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Paternity Suit

A civil action brought against an unwed father by an unmarried mother to obtain support for an illegitimate child and for payment of bills incident to the pregnancy and the birth.

A paternity suit, also known as an affiliation proceeding, is a criminal proceeding in certain states.

Generally the unwed mother initiates a paternity suit; in some jurisdictions, however, if the mother is a minor, proceedings must be initiated by a parent or guardian acting on her behalf.

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