If the parents of a child were never married, the mother has sole legal and physical custody until a court order says otherwise. It is presumed that the mother is the parent of a child, but unless the father and mother are married, there is no presumption for the father being the parent of the child (Minnesota Statute 257.54) . In order for a father to be viewed as a legal father, a Recognition of Parentage must be signed, or a court action may be started to name the father. Having the Recognition of Parentage signed and recorded has the same effect of a judgment or order by the court determining the father of a child. Having the Recognition of Parentage allows for actions such as awarding temporary or permanent custody or parenting time (Minnesota Statute 257.75). If you complete the Recognition of Parentage form before leaving the hospital, the father’s name will automatically be included on the birth certificate. If you complete the Recognition of Parentage form after leaving the hospital, you would need to have the father’s name added to update the birth certificate.

If you have questions regarding your parental rights, contact Ken Wasche today at 763 280 5100.