Either person who signs the Acknowledgement of Paternity (AOP) can take back (or “rescind”) their signature, but there are time limits for doing this. An AOP may be rescinded within (the earlier of):
- 60 days; or
- The date of an administrative or judicial proceeding relating to the child in which the signatory is a party
The relevant District law is DC Code § 16-909.01(a-1).
There is a form that can be used to rescind the AOP. The form is available at the Child Support Services Division and the Vital Records Division. It needs to be completed in its entirety and should be typed or hand-written in ink.
The person who rescinds the AOP does not have to give a reason for rescinding.
If the AOP is rescinded in accordance with the procedures set out in the law, the man’s name is deleted from the birth certificate as the child’s father. In addition, if the child has the man’s last name, the child’s last name will be changed on the child’s birth certificate.
Paternity can also be established by a court. A man who believes he is the father (even if the mother has rescinded the AOP) can ask the court for an order declaring him to be the father. For more information about this option, contact the District of Columbia Family Court Self-Help Center, Monday – Friday (except holidays), 8:30 am to 5:00 pm.
The Center is located at:
500 Indiana Avenue, NW, Suite 4335
Washington, DC 20001
Phone: (202) 879-1471