When it comes to establishing paternity, parents may have a variety of options. According to Illinois Child Support Services, the easiest method for parents in Belleville and throughout the state to establish paternity is by completing a Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity (VAP) form at the time of their child’s birth. On these forms, parents will find helpful instructions and their responsibilities and rights are listed as well.
When parents fill out a VAP form, they must provide information pertaining to their child and each other and sign the form before an adult witness who is not their child or parent. Witnesses also need to give their address and phone number. When a child is born to parents who were not married, the child’s parents can submit these forms at any time. However, hospitals provide unmarried parents with VAP forms when a child is born and the name of the father is listed on the child’s birth certificate upon completion of the form. Parents who cannot fill out a VAP form in the hospital are able to mail it in afterward. If a parent changes his or her mind after submitting a VAP form, they can have the form rescinded by signing a Rescission of Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity form.
According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, parents can find Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity forms at their local health departments, public aid offices, county clerks and also online. VAP forms are also available at certain community centers and registrar’s offices.