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Wyoming State Paternity Laws

posted by DNA Identifiers @ 11:22 AM
Thursday, July 30, 2009

wyoming

The below information is a general guide to Wyoming State Paternity Laws. Please conduct further research on your state laws for current or updated information or contact a family attorney for professional legal advice. For information on state collection locations, click here.

Link: Wyoming Department of Family Services

Required Probability of Paternity for Wyoming Courts: 99%

Required Paternity Index: 100 to 1

Current Wyoming Paternity Law: Title 14 Children Chapter 1 General Provisions – Article 5

PARENT-CHILD RELATIONSHIP

14-2-501.  Establishment of parent-child relationship.

(a)  The mother-child relationship is established between a woman and a child by:

(i)  The woman’s having given birth to the child;

(ii)  An adjudication of the woman’s maternity; or

(iii)  Adoption of the child by the woman.

(b)  The father-child relationship is established between a man and a child by:

(i)  An unrebutted presumption of the man’s paternity of the child under W.S. 14-2-504;

(ii)  An effective acknowledgment of paternity by the man under article 6 of this act, unless the acknowledgment has been rescinded or successfully challenged;

(iii)  An adjudication of the man’s paternity;

(iv)  Adoption of the child by the man; or

(v)  The man’s having consented to assisted reproduction by his wife under article 8 of this act which resulted in the birth of the child.

14-2-502.  No discrimination based on marital status.

A child born to parents who are not married to each other has the same rights under the law as a child born to parents who are married to each other.

14-2-503.  Consequences of establishment of parentage.

Unless parental rights are terminated, a parent-child relationship established under this act applies for all purposes, except as otherwise specifically provided by other law of this state.

14-2-504.  Presumption of paternity in context of marriage.

(a)  A man is presumed to be the father of a child if:

(i)  He and the mother of the child are married to each other and the child is born during the marriage;

(ii)  He and the mother of the child were married to each other and the child is born within three hundred (300) days after the marriage is terminated by death, annulment, declaration of invalidity, divorce or after the entry of a decree of separation;

(iii)  Before the birth of the child, he and the mother of the child married each other in apparent compliance with law, even if the attempted marriage is or could be declared invalid, and the child is born during the invalid marriage or within three hundred (300) days after its termination by death, annulment, declaration of invalidity, divorce or after the entry of a decree of separation;

(iv)  After the birth of the child, he and the mother of the child married each other in apparent compliance with law, whether or not the marriage is or could be declared invalid, and he voluntarily asserted his paternity of the child, and:

(A)  The assertion is in a record filed with the state office of vital records;

(B)  He agreed to be and is named as the child’s father on the child’s birth certificate; or

(C)  He promised in a record to support the child as his own.

(v)  For the first two (2) years of the child’s life, he resided in the same household with the child and openly held out the child as his own.

(b)  A presumption of paternity established under this section may be rebutted only by an adjudication under article 8 of this act.

ARTICLE 6

VOLUNTARY ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF PATERNITY

14-2-601.  Acknowledgment of paternity.

(a)  The mother of a child and a man claiming to be the genetic father of the child may sign an acknowledgment of paternity with intent to establish the man’s paternity.

(b)  An acknowledgment of paternity of a child born in Wyoming may be filed with the state office of vital records.

14-2-602.  Execution of acknowledgment of paternity.

(a)  An acknowledgment of paternity shall:

(i)  Be in a record;

(ii)  Be signed, or otherwise authenticated, under penalty for false swearing by the mother and by the man seeking to establish his paternity;

(iii)  State that the child whose paternity is being acknowledged:

(A)  Does not have a presumed father, or has a presumed father whose full name is stated; and

(B)  Does not have another acknowledged or adjudicated father.

(iv)  State whether there has been genetic testing and, if so, that the acknowledging man’s claim of paternity is consistent with the results of the testing; and

(v)  State that the signatories understand that the acknowledgment is the equivalent of a judicial adjudication of paternity of the child and that a challenge to the acknowledgment is permitted only under limited circumstances and is barred after two (2) years.

(b)  An acknowledgment of paternity is void if it:

(i)  States that another man is a presumed father, unless a denial of paternity signed or otherwise authenticated by the presumed father or a court order rebutting the presumption is filed with the state office of vital records;

(ii)  States that another man is an acknowledged or adjudicated father; or

(iii)  Falsely denies the existence of a presumed, acknowledged or adjudicated father of the child.

(c)  A presumed father may sign or otherwise authenticate an acknowledgment of paternity.

(d)  Before a mother and a man claiming to be the genetic father of a child can sign an acknowledgment of paternity affidavit, the mother and the alleged father shall be provided notice orally or through use of video or audio equipment and in writing of the alternatives to, the legal consequences of, and the rights and responsibilities that arise from, signing the acknowledgment of paternity affidavit.  If either the mother or the alleged father is a minor, any rights that attach as a result of the status as a minor shall also be provided orally or through the use of video or audio equipment and in writing, in addition to any other requirements of this subsection.

14-2-603.  Denial of paternity.

(a)  A presumed father may sign a denial of his paternity. The denial is valid only if:

(i)  An acknowledgment of paternity signed, or otherwise authenticated, by another man is filed pursuant to W.S. 14-2-605;

(ii)  The denial is in a record, and is signed, or otherwise authenticated, under penalty of perjury; and

(iii)  The presumed father has not previously:

(A)  Acknowledged his paternity, unless the previous acknowledgment has been rescinded pursuant to W.S. 14-2-607 or successfully challenged pursuant to W.S. 14-2-608; or

(B)  Been adjudicated to be the father of the child.

14-2-604.  Rules for acknowledgment and denial of paternity.

(a)  An acknowledgment of paternity and a denial of paternity may be contained in a single document or may be signed in counterparts, and may be filed separately or simultaneously. If the acknowledgement and denial are both necessary, neither is valid until both are filed.

(b)  An acknowledgment of paternity or a denial of paternity may be signed before the birth of the child.

(c)  Subject to subsection (a) of this section, an acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity takes effect on the birth of the child or the filing of the document with the state office of vital records, whichever occurs later.

(d)  An acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity signed by a minor and a legal guardian of the minor is valid if it is otherwise in compliance with this act.

14-2-605.  Effect of acknowledgment or denial of paternity.

(a)  Except as otherwise provided in W.S. 14-2-607 and 14-2-608, a valid acknowledgment of paternity filed with the state office of vital records is equivalent to an adjudication of paternity of a child and confers upon the acknowledged father all of the rights and duties of a parent.

(b)  Except as otherwise provided in W.S. 14-2-607 and 14-2-608, a valid denial of paternity by a presumed father filed with the state office of vital records in conjunction with a valid acknowledgment of paternity is equivalent to an adjudication of the nonpaternity of the presumed father and discharges the presumed father from all rights and duties of a parent.

14-2-606.  No filing fee.

The state office of vital records shall not charge for filing an acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity.

14-2-607.  Proceeding for rescission.

(a)  A signatory may rescind an acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity by commencing a proceeding to rescind before the earlier of:

(i)  Sixty (60) days after the effective date of the acknowledgment or denial, as provided in W.S. 14-2-604; or

(ii)  The date of the first hearing in a proceeding to which the signatory is a party before a court to adjudicate an issue relating to the child, including a proceeding that establishes support.

14-2-608.  Challenge after expiration of period for rescission.

(a)  After the period for rescission under W.S. 14-2-607 has expired, a signatory of an acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity may commence a proceeding to challenge the acknowledgment or denial only:

(i)  On the basis of fraud, duress or material mistake of fact; and

(ii)  Within two (2) years after the acknowledgment or denial is filed with the state office of vital records.

(b)  A party challenging an acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity has the burden of proof.

14-2-609.  Procedure for rescission or challenge.

(a)  Every signatory to an acknowledgment of paternity and any related denial of paternity shall be made a party to a proceeding to rescind or challenge the acknowledgment or denial.

(b)  For the purpose of rescission of, or challenge to, an acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity, a signatory submits to personal jurisdiction of this state by signing the acknowledgment or denial, effective upon the filing of the document with the state office of vital records.

(c)  Except for good cause shown, during the pendency of a proceeding to rescind or challenge an acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity, the court may not suspend the legal responsibilities of a signatory arising from the acknowledgment, including the duty to pay child support.

(d)  A proceeding to rescind or to challenge an acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity shall be conducted in the same manner as a proceeding to adjudicate parentage under article 8 of this act.

(e)  At the conclusion of a proceeding to rescind or challenge an acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity, the court shall order the state office of vital records to amend the birth record of the child, if appropriate.

14-2-610.  Ratification barred.

A court or administrative agency conducting a judicial or administrative proceeding is not required or permitted to ratify an unchallenged acknowledgment of paternity.

14-2-611.  Full faith and credit.

A court of this state shall give full faith and credit to an acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity effective in another state if the acknowledgment or denial has been signed and is otherwise in compliance with the law of the other state.

14-2-612.  Forms for acknowledgment and denial of paternity.

(a)  To facilitate compliance with this article, the state office of vital records shall prescribe forms for the acknowledgment of paternity and the denial of paternity.

(b)  A valid acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity is not affected by a later modification of the prescribed form.

(c)  Every hospital or birthing center located in the state shall provide to any person who holds himself out to be the natural parent of a child born in the state an affidavit of paternity pursuant to this act. The facility providing the affidavit shall forward the completed affidavit to the state office of vital records. Upon request, the state office of vital records shall provide blank affidavits of paternity to any facility making the request under this subsection.

14-2-613.  Release of information.

The state office of vital records may release information relating to the acknowledgment of paternity or denial of paternity to a signatory of the acknowledgment or denial, to courts and to the Title IV-D agency of this or another state.

14-2-614.  Adoption of rules.

The state office of vital records may adopt rules to implement this article.

Link: Wyoming State Laws

This information is a general guide. Research your state laws for current information or contact a family attorney.

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8 Responses to “Wyoming State Paternity Laws”

  1. If a married couple is separated and she becomes pregnant during that time, but they don’t divorce, and it is unclear who the father is, what is the next appropriate step to take? The man who thinks the child might be his is pressuring the married woman into getting a paternity test on her husband and supposedly has an attorney, but no legal action has been taken yet. Does her husband have to cooperate in any way by taking a paternity test for the other man?

  2. admin says:

    Hello Michelle,

    No the husband does not have to cooperate. But it is best to get paternity issues resolved as soon as possible because most states have a time limit on challenging paternity. I have included the section of Wyoming State Paternity Law regarding the presumption of paternity. You might want to contact a Family Attorney regarding your rights in this situation.

    14-2-504. Presumption of paternity in context of marriage.

    (a) A man is presumed to be the father of a child if:

    (i) He and the mother of the child are married to each other and the child is born during the marriage;

    (ii) He and the mother of the child were married to each other and the child is born within three hundred (300) days after the marriage is terminated by death, annulment, declaration of invalidity, divorce or after the entry of a decree of separation;

    (iii) Before the birth of the child, he and the mother of the child married each other in apparent compliance with law, even if the attempted marriage is or could be declared invalid, and the child is born during the invalid marriage or within three hundred (300) days after its termination by death, annulment, declaration of invalidity, divorce or after the entry of a decree of separation;

    I hope this answers your questions. Please let us know if we can be of any more assistance.
    Briana Rogers

  3. Debbie says:

    If a child is born in Spearfish, SD but the parents live in Wyoming, do they take care of the birth certificate at the hospital and send it to Wyoming ?

    If the couple is not married and want to complete legal DNA testing, does it need to be done before leaving the hospital?

    Does the birth certificate need to be completed before leaving the hospital?

  4. admin says:

    Hello Debbie,

    I just spoke with Vital Records, Dept of Health for South Dakota (605) 773-4961. The parents will need to complete the birth certificate in South Dakota because that is where the birth occurred. Unfortunately I was not able to get a very clear answer as to whether the birth certificate needed to be completed prior to the mother and child leaving the hospital.

    They do not need to complete the DNA test prior to leaving the hospital but would have to have a legal test done in order to modify the birth certificate.

    I hope this helps.
    DNA Identifiers Staff

  5. Racheal says:

    When I became pregnant with my daughter i was unable to locate her Biological father to inform him. I later married after her birth and her step father adopted her. We have divorced since and I have recently located her biological father and he wants to cliam her but is not sure how to go about this as he is not a citizen of the U.S. What do we need to do to establish paternity for him so that he has rights to his child. Please help us resolve this problem as it has taken me ten years to find him.

    Thank you.

  6. admin says:

    Hello Racheal,

    You will need a DNA paternity test with the biological father in order to modify the birth certificate, or for any other legal purpose. This can be done even if he lives in a different country. I am not sure what steps you would need to take after proving his parentage for him to have rights to his child. That is best addressed by a family law attorney.

    Best,
    The Staff at DNA Identifiers

  7. Grandma says:

    Son and ex gf became pregnant in May of 2009. Ex gf lived in our state 2 years prior to becoming pregnant and continued living through her whole pregnancy and 2 months after giving birth. She moved to Wyoming stayed for total of 3 weeks, moved to a different state back East for a month and now has returned to Wyoming. She thinking about moving back East. Where does my son need to go to file Petition for Paternity so that he can exercise his rights as the father? The state where the child was conceived and born? The mother’s home state? The new state she is planning on moving to? He is listed on the birth certificate.

  8. admin says:

    Hello Grandma,

    I am sorry but that is a question best answered by a family attorney in your area. We don’t specialize in family and law and would hate to give you the wrong advice.

    Best of Luck,
    The Staff at DNA Identifiers

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