Paternity is essentially the legal recognition that a man is the father of a child. Establishment of paternity brings with it various rights and responsibilities, including (i) the right to establish a time-sharing (visitation) schedule for the father, (ii) the responsibility of the father to provide the child with financial support, and (iii) the right of the child to inherit from the father.
As stated in section 742.011 of the Florida Statutes, the following people may bring a paternity suit in Florida:
- Any woman who is pregnant or has a child;
- Any man who has reason to believe that he is the father of a child; or
- Any child when paternity has not been established by law or otherwise.