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Chicago Divorce Lawyer > Blog > Child Custody > Were You Unmarried when Your Child was Born in Chicago? Read this Article about the Chicago VAP Process

Were You Unmarried when Your Child was Born in Chicago? Read this Article about the Chicago VAP Process

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According to the Chicago Tribune, an estimated 40% of children are born to parents who are unmarried in the United States. While having children without being married is certainly popular and nothing out of the ordinary, what many Chicago parents may not realize is that certain child custody issues may crop up due to their unmarried status. To remedy this issue, in Chicago, parents can complete a form called a “Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity” or “VAP” form, in which the biological father of a child born to unmarried parents declares that he is, indeed, the biological father of the child, regardless of the fact that he and the child’s mother are unmarried. But how does the Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity process work, and where can Chicago parents turn to if they need legal help with child custody issues? To help Chicago parents better understand the VAP process, we answer those questions here.

Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity (VAP) – A Declaration of Paternity

The first thing that unmarried Chicago parents should know is that parentage in Chicago is determined under Illinois state laws. While the woman giving birth to a child is legally presumed to be the legal biological mother of the child she gave birth to, the same is not necessarily true about the father of the child. In fact, under Illinois laws, in Chicago, while the man that the biological mother is married to at the time of the child’s birth is legally recognized as the father of the child, if the couple is not married, that is not the case. Instead, the biological father of the child must take additional steps to be legally recognized as the father under Illinois laws.

Filling Out a VAP Form – The Ins and Outs

A Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity (VAP) form includes a declaration from the father of a child who is born to unmarried parents that he (the father) is, in fact, the father of the child. Simply put, if a VAP form is completed by the unmarried parents of a child, then the child’s parentage is legally recognized, according to the form. A VAP form may be signed at the hospital when the child is born, or, if the father does not complete the form at the hospital, it may be signed at a later date. A copy of the VAP form can be found online, and can be submitted by mail.

Legal Help for Parents in Chicago – Chicago Child Custody Lawyer

If you are in the Chicago area and you need legal help with your child custody or family law case, contact the experienced Chicago child custody lawyers at the law firm Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC. The experienced Chicago child custody lawyers at Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC help Chicago parents with the most sensitive and precious of legal issues – those surrounding their beloved young ones. Contact Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC today and speak to a lawyer about your case now.

Source:

chicagotribune.com/2023/08/15/jeffery-leving-illinois-needs-to-put-children-first-and-give-fathers-equal-rights/

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