Paternity Establishment

All actions to establish paternity must be initiated through your local Child Support agency. The Columbiana County CSEA provides services to establish paternity. Paternity becomes an issue when a child is born out of wedlock. By establishing paternity, a legal determination is made naming the biological father of a child. To request paternity services, please complete the Application Forms below. Once completed, please send these to the CSEA.

Birth Certificate

If the father of a child who was born out of wedlock signs the birth certificate at the hospital, he will also be required to sign the Paternity Affidavit. When this occurs, paternity is established, and we can proceed with establishing a child support order.

Paternity Acknowledgement

If there are no other claims or pending actions to establish paternity for a child, the biological father of a child who was born out of wedlock may sign a Paternity Affidavit acknowledging that he is the father of the child. This can happen at the hospital when the child is born, at the CSEA, or at the local Registrars office. Once signed, the affidavit can be rescinded, at your local CSEA, for a period of 60 days.

Genetic Testing

Often genetic testing is used to determine the biological father of a child. The CSEA provides genetic testing services. In most cases, the parties must first apply for child support services (see application forms above), and the testing will be completed at no cost to the parties. A copy of the child's birth certificate is required. The CSEA may be able to assist you in obtaining a copy.

The Agency also provides genetic testing for individuals who have been court-ordered to have the testing completed.  When completing court-ordered testing, there is sometimes a cost to the parties. To apply for Paternity Establishment services, please complete the above forms and send the IV-D Application for Services and the Application Questionnaire & Checklist to the Columbiana County CSEA. 

Cooperation Requirements

If you have applied for Public Assistance, you may be required to cooperate with Child Support to establish paternity and a support order. If this is the case, you will be receiving information from us.