Paternity Law

What Is Paternity Law?

A paternity action allows a person to secure child support, custody, visitation rights, and child support for a child born to unwed persons or persons in a same sex relationship. A paternity action establishes the legal parentage of the child. Generally, the parties can agree to parentage of a child. However, if the parties cannot agree on parentage, the Court 

can order DNA genetic testing to determine who is the biological parent of the child in question. Once parentage is established, the court can make orders regarding that child as to custody and visitation rights and hold a parent responsible for paying child support.

Our Approach to Paternity Law

Although paternity appears relatively straight forward, paternity laws are constantly evolving and even a non-biological parent or a same sex parent may be determined to be the legal parent of a child and have parental rights and responsibilities. At Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich & Davidson, LLP, we have represented clients on both sides of the parentage issue and are knowledgeable about all of the ramifications such parentage determinations may involve.

At Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich, LLP, we recognize that family law cases involve sensitive issues and can be emotionally draining on the client. As one of the largest family law firms in Southern California, Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich, LLP has the dedication and experience required to handle every type of family law matter.

How Paternity Cases re Determined

Establishing paternity means that the courts have officially decided who a child’s father is. This affects parents who are unmarried when a child is born and also same-sex couples. Taking a DNA test is the easiest way to establish your parentage of a child. When a person is declared the legal parent of a child, that person must financially support them.

Specializing in complex family matters, GFT has a staff of eight experienced attorneys. Combining top-notch litigators with experts in non-litigation alternatives, GFT emerges as one of the most well-rounded firms in the family law practice area in Southern California. We are dedicated to providing our clients the highest quality legal service to effectively represent them. From litigation to mediation to collaborative divorce, GFT has a proven track record of favorably resolving cases through skilled representation and strong advocacy.

What Is Paternity Law?

A paternity action allows a person to secure child support, custody, visitation rights, and child support for a child born to unwed persons or persons in a same sex relationship. A paternity action establishes the legal parentage of the child. Generally, the parties can agree to parentage of a child. However, if the parties cannot agree on parentage, the Court can order DNA genetic testing to determine who is the biological parent of the child in question. Once parentage is established, the court can make orders regarding that child as to custody and visitation rights and hold a parent responsible for paying child support.

Our Approach to Paternity Law

Although paternity appears relatively straight forward, paternity laws are constantly evolving and even a non-biological parent or a same sex parent may be determined to be the legal parent of a child and have parental rights and responsibilities. At Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich & Davidson, LLP, we have represented clients on both sides of the parentage issue and are knowledgeable about all of the ramifications such parentage determinations may involve.

At Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich, LLP, we recognize that family law cases involve sensitive issues and can be emotionally draining on the client. As one of the largest family law firms in Southern California, Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich, LLP has the dedication and experience required to handle every type of family law matter.

How Paternity Cases re Determined

Establishing paternity means that the courts have officially decided who a child’s father is. This affects parents who are unmarried when a child is born and also same-sex couples. Taking a DNA test is the easiest way to establish your parentage of a child. When a person is declared the legal parent of a child, that person must financially support them.

Specializing in complex family matters, GFT has a staff of eight experienced attorneys. Combining top-notch litigators with experts in non-litigation alternatives, GFT emerges as one of the most well-rounded firms in the family law practice area in Southern California. We are dedicated to providing our clients the highest quality legal service to effectively represent them. From litigation to mediation to collaborative divorce, GFT has a proven track record of favorably resolving cases through skilled representation and strong advocacy.

FAQs About Paternity Cases

Can I obtain child support if I’m unsure who my child’s father is?

Unfortunately, no. Paternity must legally be established before a party is responsible for child support.

My child’s father does not have any financial resources. Why should I establish parentage?

It’s a good idea to establish paternity as soon as possible so that the child may have access to support and health insurance once the parent in question obtains a job.

How do I get a paternity test if my child’s parent lives in another state?

Local agencies can collaborate with their counterparts in other states in order to obtain a paternity test for you.

Do I have to pay for a DNA test?

It depends where you have the test administered. If it’s performed at the Department of Child Support Services, there is no cost. Rules vary from district to district, so it’s best to confirm with your attorney.

Our Family Law & Divorce Attorneys

When you’re going through a tough time, you need a full team on your side. Our five-attorney firm has all of the resources to attend to our clients’ needs.

John J. Gilligan, CFLS

John J. Gilligan, CFLS

John J. Gilligan, CFLS has practiced family law for 39 years and handled over 7500 family law matters. He sits on the Family Law Executive Committee for the Los Angeles County Bar and donates several hours of his time each month to the court system as a mediator and Judge Pro Tem.

 

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Janine M. Frisco

Janine M. Frisco

Ms. Frisco’s first preference is always to mediate spousal, financial and custody issues, she is also a staunch advocate for her client’s and a relentless opponent in a court of law. Ms. Frisco regularly litigates complex trials, acts as a mediator for both parties, and collaborates when the parties pursue collaboration.

 

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Kristin Trutanich

Kristin Trutanich

Kristin Trutanich is a trial attorney with over 13 years of litigation experience. Prior to joining Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich, Ms. Trutanich was a Deputy District Attorney with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. As a Deputy District Attorney, she tried over 70 jury trials involving domestic violence etc.

 

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Michael Sarris

Michael Sarris

Michael Sarris specializes in California family law with extensive experience in the areas of child support, child custody and visitation, spousal support and community property division. Mr. Sarris founded the Law Offices of Michael Sarris.

 

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Wendy K. Tse

Wendy K. Tse

Family law attorney, Wendy K. Tse, has practiced family law exclusively since 1998. Ms.Tse specializes in and has extensive experience with matters pertaining to California divorce, contested custody disputes, child support, spousal support etc.

 

LEARN MORE

Our Family Law & Divorce Attorneys

When you’re going through a tough time, you need a full team on your side. Our five-attorney firm has all of the resources to attend to our clients’ needs.

John J. Gilligan, CFLS

John J. Gilligan, CFLS

John J. Gilligan, CFLS has practiced family law for 39 years and handled over 7500 family law matters. He sits on the Family Law Executive Committee for the Los Angeles County Bar and donates several hours of his time each month to the court system as a mediator and Judge Pro Tem.

 

LEARN MORE

Janine M. Frisco

Janine M. Frisco

Ms. Frisco’s first preference is always to mediate spousal, financial and custody issues, she is also a staunch advocate for her client’s and a relentless opponent in a court of law. Ms. Frisco regularly litigates complex trials, acts as a mediator for both parties, and collaborates when the parties pursue collaboration.

 

LEARN MORE

Kristin Trutanich

Kristin Trutanich

Kristin Trutanich is a trial attorney with over 13 years of litigation experience. Prior to joining Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich, Ms. Trutanich was a Deputy District Attorney with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. As a Deputy District Attorney, she tried over 70 jury trials involving domestic violence etc.

 

LEARN MORE

Michael Sarris

Michael Sarris

Michael Sarris specializes in California family law with extensive experience in the areas of child support, child custody and visitation, spousal support and community property division. Mr. Sarris founded the Law Offices of Michael Sarris.

 

LEARN MORE

Wendy K. Tse

Wendy K. Tse

Family law attorney, Wendy K. Tse, has practiced family law exclusively since 1998. Ms.Tse specializes in and has extensive experience with matters pertaining to California divorce, contested custody disputes, child support, spousal support etc.

 

LEARN MORE

100+ YEARS COLLECTIVE EXPERIENCE

Our Law Firm’s History

Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich, LLP, was co-founded by John J. Gilligan, who has been practicing family law in Long Beach since 1981. Janine M. Frisco is also a partner, as is Kristin Trutanich. Together, they are the area’s most comprehensive legal stronghold.

GFT has helped individuals and their families surmount their legal difficulties for the past several decades. We are proud to serve Southern California, and have the dedication and experience required to handle every type of issue.

The Team of Attorneys
You’ve Been Looking For

Our experienced team of professionals will guide you through life’s murkiest waters. At Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich, LLP, we have the resources needed to represent clients in all aspects of family and criminal law.

The Team of Attorneys You’ve Been Looking For

Our experienced team of professionals will guide you through life’s murkiest waters. At Gilligan, Frisco & Trutanich, LLP, we have the resources needed to represent clients in all aspects of family and criminal law.

Office
Locations

We have two offices conveniently located in Long Beach & Palos Verdes. We represent clients in courts throughout Los Angeles, Orange, and Riverside counties.

Long Beach Office

One World Trade Center, Suite #1740
Long Beach, CA 90831
Telephone: (562) 431-2000
FAX: (562) 431-2100

Palos Verdes Office

2516 Vía Tejon, Suite 309
Palos Verdes Estates, CA 90274
Telephone: (310) 237-9001
FAX: (562) 431-2100