Birth Certificate

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Question: I live with my boyfriend we are not married and he has no intention of getting married. He intends on being involved in our, as he calls it “illegitimate child’s birth” and I would prefer to use my last name for our child. He disagrees and wants to use his last name. I have a child from a previous marriage and I find it difficult with us having different last names over the years with insurance and doctors appointments, just frustrating. Do I have to use our child’s father’s last name for this child?

Answer: First, your child is not "illegitimate."  That is an outdated concept that is no longer used.  No child is illegitimate.  Your question is difficult to answer because I don't have all the facts.  Is your boyfriend willing to sign the appropriate documents to be listed on the birth certificate as the father?  If so, he will be legally obligated to support the child to age 18.  If he is on the birth certificate, the name question still remains.  There is Arizona case law going both ways.  Some cases say if dad is on the birth certificate, he has a right for the child to have his last name.  Other cases say that the age old custom is that children borne out of wedlock have mom's last name.  What you decide to do may depend in large part on how permanent you expect this relationship to be.

QUESTIONS

  • I live with my boyfriend we are not married and he has no intention of getting married. He intends on being involved in our, as he calls it “illegitimate child’s birth” and I would prefer to use my last name for our child. He disagrees and wants to use his last name. I have a child from a previous marriage and I find it difficult with us having different last names over the years with insurance and doctors appointments, just frustrating. Do I have to use our child’s father’s last name for this child?

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