Vital Statistics (VS) maintains the Paternity Registry for the state of Texas. This registry contains Notices of Intent to Claim Paternity and does not establish legal paternity.
A man may register with the Paternity Registry when he is not listed as a father on the birth certificate of a child he may have fathered. Filing a Notice to Claim Paternity form to register with the Paternity Registry is useful in (but is not limited to) the following situations:
- A man and woman do not agree that he is the father of her child. The man wishes to assert his paternity.
- More than one man claims to be the father of the child. Each man would complete a separate Notice of Intent to Claim Paternity.
- The mother refuses to complete and sign the Acknowledgment of Paternity form.
The Paternity Registry helps:
- Protect parental rights of fathers who affirmatively assume responsibility for children they may have fathered. *
- Expedite adoptions of children whose biological fathers are unwilling to assume responsibility for their children.*
*Note: The Notice of Intent Claim Paternity form does not legally establish paternity, nor can it be used to add a man's name to the child's birth certificate. It is simply an assertion of belief that the man is the father of a child and wishes to preserve his rights as a parent. For information on establishing paternity for a child born in Texas and filing an Acknowledgement of Paternity, see the Texas Attorney's General Office website. For more information, see the Texas Family Code, Chapter 160, Subchapter E.
How to Register
If you believe your situation qualifies for the Paternity Registry, complete the following form:
The Notice to Claim Paternity Form must be filed
- before the birth of the child, OR
- within 31 days of the birth of the child.
Paternity Registry Inquiries
Qualified individuals or parties can request a search of the paternity registry.
Qualified individuals or parties include:
- Court or person designated by the court
- Mother of the child
- An agency authorized by another law to receive the information
- Licensed child-placing agency; (E) A support enforcement agency
- Party, or party's attorney of record, to a proceeding under this chapter or a proceeding to adopt or to terminate parental rights regarding a child who is the subject of the registration.
- Paternity Registries in other U.S. States
To request a search, complete the following form:
Send your completed form and check or money order of $10 by mail to:Paternity Registry
DSHS - Vital Statistics Section
P.O. BOX 12040
Austin, TX 78711-2040
Check or money orders should be payable to DSHS - Vital Statistics.