I was legally divorced as of May 9, 2014. I gave birth to my son on July 2, 2014. His father was not my ex- husband. When filling out my son’s birth certificate the hospital worker told me that I could not put my son’s father on the certificate because I had been married before the deadline in North Carolina. She gave me a sheet of paper from N.C. Vital Records that states:
If the mother is married, an Affidavit of Parentage may still be completed, but the biological father cannot be placed on the birth certificate without court order. The mother must have been legally divorced 280 days from the time of birth in order for the biological father to be added.

The attorney that handled my divorce called this a “legitimacy proceeding” and quoted me $3,500.00 to be able to put the biological father on my son’s birth certificate.

However, she is in Union County and my son was born in Mecklenburg so she can not represent me nor my son’s father.

My question is: Why does it cost so much to file paperwork with the clerk and is this something I can do myself??

Thank you,


I cannot speak to what other attorneys charge for their services. If you are unsure why this service costs more than you were expecting, ask the attorney what the fee encompasses and how the fee is calculated (i.e., hourly v. flat rate). You could also ask the attorney for a referral in Mecklenburg county, perhaps she will recommend someone who charges less. You are certainly welcome to navigate the process on your own; NC law doesn’t require that you have an attorney to establish paternity and ultimately have the father’s name included on the birth certificate. If you feel confident that you can navigate this procedure on your own, you are more than welcome to do so.