This is a surprisingly common question in Florida Paternity law. When we meet with a prospective Father, or get a call from a prospective Father we always have two immediate pieces of advice.
FIRST - you must register with the Florida Putative Father registry. If your girlfriend is pregnant, unmarried, and you suspect the child is yours - stop reading this right now and go HERE.
If you do not register with the Florida Putative Father registry your child's mother (your girlfriend or ex-girlfriend) can legally give up your future son or daughter for adoption and you do not even need to be notified. What's worse, you can have your rights terminated and you don't even have the right to contest the termination. It is critically important that you register with the Florida Putative Father registry at the link we've provided filling out form DH1695 for English.
SECOND - schedule an appointment to meet with an attorney you trust. There are a ton of factors to be considered when establishing your parental rights from when to file, how to approach it, what forms to file, what type of and/or amounts of support to provide. How to keep your future son or daughter in Florida if your ex is threatening to move, etc...
This area of law is complicated further by a marriage between your girlfriend and someone else either during your relationship or after.
Being a catholic matrimonial and attorney in Florida is full of complex issues but one I cannot compromise on is being pro-life. If you are in a position where you want to promote the relationship between yourself and your child and want to assert your rights, please contact our office at 239-206-3664 to schedule an appointment.