Is There a Way to Speed Up Paternity Testing if Child is at Risk?

Note: The DearEsq free 'ask a lawyer' site is offered as a free informational service to the public and is not intended as legal advice. Laws vary from state-to-state, and in addition every situation is unique, and relevant facts may not be known. The answer to the question posed below may not apply to in your state or to your situation. For legal advice in your state and your situation you should consult with an attorney in your state who is familiar with the rules and laws in your state.

“A child is in Morris Co. NJ DYFS care, no father listed on birth certificate.   A man was told he was the father of this child but the mother wanted to wait for paternity testing until she regained custody.  Three months later, she has not regained custody.  The alleged father calls DYFS, gives them all the information they asked for and is still waiting for the paternity test to be scheduled.  What does DYFS do with that information?  How long does it take to schedule the test and how long will it take for the results?  Are the courts involved in scheduling the paternity test?

The alleged father and his family do not want the child going to live with the mother and/or her family.  They are unfit to care for the baby.  What can the alleged father and his families do?  The child is almost 3 months now with no contact.  They want to be involved in the child’s life but need to know the paternity.  How can he (the alleged father) speed things up?  What are some of the timelines for the process of knowing the paternity and then getting the baby out of foster care?  Should he (the alleged father) get an attorney after he finds out he is the father?  Who would represent him if he has no money to pay an attorney?

Please HELP we need advice.  Thank you in advance for any answer or help you can provide.”

To get the specifics on the timing and processing of the DNA test results, contact the Morris Co. DYFS, and they should be able to walk you through the DNA testing processes and procedures specific to their office. You should also find out who is the caseworker in the case, and communicate directly with them, so they are aware of the father’s efforts to be involved with his
child, should the child be his. In complicated custody issues such as this, it is always best to find an experienced attorney to guide you through the process and avoid costly, time-consuming mistakes.  Since cost is an issue, contact the county Bar Association for a referral to a pro bono family law attorney.  You could also contact family services for a referral. If paternity test shows that he is the father, and that father wishes to provide for and support the child, and the child is in the care of the state, it is likely that the child will be placed with the father, barring, of course, that there are no issues with his ability to parent.