Room 314, 128 North 2nd Street, Yakima, WA 98901
Honorable Robert W. Inouye
Honorable Lani-Kai Swanhart
Honorable Gayle M. Harthcock
YAKIMA COUNTY COURT FACILITATOR
PATERNITY (NON-MARRIED PARENTS)
If you want to request custody, visitation or child support and you were never married to the other parent; you may be able to file a Petition in Superior Court. You may purchase a “parentage book” in room 323 of the courthouse for $40.00. This book contains all the forms, samples, and instructions necessary to start and finalize your parentage case. The filing fee is $280.00.
This book is intended to assist you with completing the paperwork necessary to start and finalize a parentage case in which the father has signed an Affidavit of Paternity and it has been filed with the State of Washington. Note: You will be required to order a certified copy of the Acknowledgment of Paternity from Olympia. There is a fee. An order form is included in this book. You must wait at least 60 days after an Acknowledgement of Paternity has been filed before you commence an action for a Residential Schedule or Child Support Order.
YOU SHOULD SPEAK WITH THE COURT FACILITATOR BEFORE PURCHASING THIS BOOK.
If you need assistance with the forms or process, you may contact the Facilitator by calling (509)574-2695.
1. Do I need an attorney?
You are not required to have an attorney and you may represent yourself. You may also hire an attorney at any time.
2. Do I need a case number?
No. If you are not sure about a whether you have a case number, you may contact The Clerk’s Office by calling (509) 574-1430.
3. What if I have a case number?
If you already have a case number, you don’t need to start a new case. You will file for a modification instead. Modification may include changing custody, visitation or child support. There are books available for those actions.
4. Why would I need to order another copy of my paternity affidavit?
The copy you may have is a carbon copy and is used for your records. However, the court will require a “certified copy” which can only be obtained from Olympia. The Facilitator can give you instructions on how to order it.
5. What if we didn’t sign a paternity affidavit?
If the child’s birth certificate indicates that no father was listed, then you may contact the Prosecutor’s Office for assistance with your case. They can be reached by calling (509) 574-1300.
6. What if I cannot find the other parent?
You may request court permission to serve them by mail to a last known address or family members address.
7. Can I get an emergency custody order?
Yes. You may request the court grant you emergency custody. If the court feels it is appropriate, they may sign an order immediately.
8. Do I have to go to court?
If your case is contested, you will have to go to court.
9. Do I have to ask for child support?
No. You may decide to ask for just visitation or just child support or both.