A presumption of paternity arises where a child is born into an intact marriage. In that circumstance, absent clear and convincing evidence to the contrary, the husband will be deemed to be the father. However, it may be a scenario where the biological father is not the husband.
In this instance, genetic testing would be needed to conclusively establish who the father is and subsequently have the birth certificate amended to reflect the same.
There may be a very different outcome if the actual father is not established right away. Paternity by estoppel acts to impose an obligation on the party who holds themselves out as a father to the child and supports the child to continue to support the child. The Supreme Court has held that the purpose of paternity by estoppel is to keep families intact and protect the best interest of the child by shielding them from claims of illegitimacy and, potentially, a broken family.
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The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has recognized that paternity by estoppel is immediately appealable so as to protect the established parent-child relationship. In the most recent case, genetic testing proved that a child born to a married woman was not her husband's child but rather the product of an affair. The paramour filed for custody and genetic testing and proved he was the father however the court would not allow the custody order to go into effect due to the fact the husband had raised the child all along. Accordingly, the court would need to be convinced that it is in the best interests of a child to continue to recognize later recognize someone else as the father.