When the parents of a child are married, a child born during the marriage is presumed to be the child of the father.
When a child is born to parents who are not legally married, then paternity must be established. Otherwise, the child has no legal father. There are two (2) ways to establish paternity in New York State. The father can sign a voluntary acknowledgement form. In the alternative, either party can petition the court to determine paternity.
Once paternity is established, various potential legal rights of custody, visitation and support are then available.