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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    3

    Default Rights of Unwed Father to Name the Baby

    My former girlfriend and I are expecting a baby. If things get less-than-cordial prior to the baby's birth, what rights do I have in naming the child? Further, and more specifically, I want the boy to have my last name. What rights do I have in this? I am a father-to-be who intends on being as involved as possible with my son, and really want him to have my last name.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,658

    Default Naming a Baby

    The baby will be named by the person who fills out the application for the birth certificate. If you are not on cordial terms with the mother at the time of birth, the odds are very low that you will be the person who completes that application.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    3

    Default Naming The Baby--The Last Name

    Thank you for your response. So basically, I have NO "rights" as the father for protecting my interests in naming this child? I imagine we will both be there when the birth certificate application is completed, but essentially all of the rights for naming the child stop with the mother??

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,658

    Default Unmarried Father & Name Issues

    Until you have established your legal rights in relationship to the child, you don't have legal rights. Depending upon state law, you may be able to achieve that through an affidavit of parentage at the hospital after the birth of the child.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    3

    Default Naming The Baby--The Last Name

    Again, thank you for your response. I do have the written results of a paternity test for this child, establishing me as the father. Does that establish me as having parental/paternal rights? And if so, how does that affect my rights to naming the child with my last name? Thanks!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    4

    Default

    I hate to give you more bad news, but when I had children, they pretty much ignored my husband when it came to chosing the name. The hospital staff waited until the next day (when I woke from the c-sections) so I could fill out the paperwork on the name. And even though my husband and I were happily married at the time, his name didn't even get put on the birth certificate. I personally thought this was just wrong, but that's how they handled it with us. I think a child (especially boys) should have their father's last name and I wish you luck on getting your child to have your name. You may want to consult with an attorney to see what other options you have.

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