If two people have a child together and are not married at the time of the child’s birth, it may be necessary to have the court determine paternity for the child. There are several ways paternity can be established. During a paternity action, the court may not only determine child custody but also other issues such as child support and visitation. The court may also address the child’s name or name change.

Can I request a DNA test?

Yes. Either parent can request DNA testing. The Judge will decide if DNA testing is appropriate and also who will be responsible for paying the costs of the test. Parents can agree to do DNA testing voluntarily without a court order.

What if my spouse has a child that is not mine while we are married?

Under Iowa law, the spouse is considered to be the legal parent. It may be necessary to disestablish paternity so that the proper person is named as the parent.

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