Submmission Needed – Paternity Implications
The Births, Deaths, Marriages, and Relationships Registration Amendment Bill is open for submissions.
This is an important bill for Fathers as there are serious implications for paternity registration buried in the bill.
Clauses 10, 11 and 12 are of particular interest as is 84A
To Sum Up
The first is in relation to the part of the bill which places a statutory obligation on both parents of a child to jointly notify a Registrar of the birth of a child. If
The only exceptions are when there is only one parent at law – this happens with some procedures for assisted reproduction, or where one parent is “unavailable”, or where requiring the other parent to sign the form would cause so-called “undue distress” to one of the parents.
This changes the position from the current law, where the obligation to notify a Registrar rests only with people who are legally guardians of the child at the time of the birth.
If this bill goes through there will therefore be a statutory obligation on fathers of children to make the notification, and an obligation on mothers to jointly make the notification with the father – whether they choose to or not.
If the father does not agree to having his name on the Birth Certificate the registrar can use extensive investigation powers to place a fathers name on the birth certificate.
Section 89(e) of the Act makes it a criminal offence to “having had the relevant provision of this Act drawn to the person’s attention, fails or refuses to give any information required by this Act to be given”.
Please have a look at the bill and please make a submission to the select committee.
Remember a child has a right to know both of his parents and while it is easy to identify the mother the only conclusive evidence that a man is a child’s father is a DNA test. Please stress the need for FREE DNA testing if requested by a Father as a requirement for birth registration.
The certificate of birth is the primary document used for establishing proof of paternity for child support (tax) recovery and if it is wrong it is currently and will under this bill will be very difficult and expensive for a father to gain redress against the injustice.
Remember the solution is simple FREE DNA tests,without the mother acting as a gatekeeper, if requested as this will protect the child and the father and provide honesty and truth in parenthood.
Finally lets not forget the kids, they have the right to be sure that dad is dad and not an unrelated stranger.