A lot of people, especially in recent years have decided upon living together either before or instead of marriage. There are several varying reasons for this, but the most common reasons are that the couple wants to live together and get to know each other better before deciding to get married, the couple doesn’t believe in the institution of marriage, or the couple is a same-sex couple in a state where same-sex marriage isn’t legal.
Having said this, there are a lot of things to consider when living together, such as what is going to happen to the property the couple accumulates together, are both of the people in the couple going to work or is one of them going to stay home and take care of the cooking and cleaning, and children. There are quite a few couples who aren’t married that decide to have children together. So what things do you need to consider if you are thinking about having a child out of wedlock? Below is a list of things that should be considered for unmarried couples thinking of having children together:
- What last name should the children have? On the birth certificate, the parents can decide to either give the child the mother’s last name, the father’s last name, or a hyphenated version of both last names joined together.
- Make sure that both of the parents names are on the birth certificate. This isn’t just so the parents can show off that they have a baby,but it helps the child later on in life to not only know who their parents are (should something happen to them), but also to entitle them to things such as survivorship benefits from their parents
- Make sure that everything is in order (all legal paperwork) so that your child will be entitled to social security benefits or other government benefits
- Decide which parent will claim the child (or children) on their taxes
- How the child’s care, living situation, custody, and visitation rights should be handled if the couple ends their relationship
- Adoption. Some couples can’t have children the natural way, or they wish to adopt a child for various other reasons. Adoption agencies are tougher on unmarried couples and it may require a lot of time and patience if you and your partner want to adopt a child without being married.
There are other things that unmarried couples should consider when deciding to have children together, as there are several things that married couples need to consider as well when bringing a child into the world. The above list covers the important legal aspects that need to be considered for unmarried couples before they either give birth or adopt. Having children can be an exciting and also very stressful event in one’s life, but if the couple takes care of the legal things they need to be concerned with before the day comes when they bring their child home, then it can make things a lot easier for them.
Consult with a family law attorney to better understand the legal responsibility it is to be unmarried parents. Contact The Law Offices of Amy M. Montes and schedule your consultation today. We can help you set an agreement legally holding the two involving parties responsible and accountable when it comes to their children. We can help, call today.