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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Des Moines, IA

    Default Establishing Paternity after Father has died

    I am not sure if this is the right board to go to or not, but I thought I would give it a try. My son's father and I had broken up before I found out I was pregnant. 2 months before I have my son, the father is killed in a car accident by a drunk driver. While I have always been interested in getting him established as the father, it is a bit of a difficult situation. My son's father was from Africa, where his parent's currently reside; so I can't "make" them take any sort of paternity test. While he hadn't been working very long in the country when he was killed; I am unsure of the Social Security benefits. Also, the man who killed my son's father was driving drunk, and the trial was just concluded in August. The guy has to pay $150,000 to the estate. My son's father, however, was married at the time of the acciden't to get his citizenship, or so he says. So now what? Is hiring a lawyer to do all this really worth it? Is my son entitled to anything? I really don't have the money to hire a lawyer, since the only source of income is mine. This is probably a bit jumbled up, but hopefully I have it as clear as I can make it. Thanks in advance for any advice. Cheri

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Behind a Desk

    Default Sharing Personal Injury Settlement

    If you hire a lawyer, get a court order to try to establish paternity, and make a claim against the settlement, your child should end up with a considerable portion of the settlement. Particularly if you can demonstrate that the marriage was a sham for immigration purposes.

    Your lawyer should also be able to help you determine if the father was covered by Social Security, such that the child would be eligible for survivor benefits, and (if so) with the application process which will likely be complicated by the father's death.

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