Austin, Texas (PressExposure) June 15, 2008 -- In paternity law, legitimacy refers to the status of children who are born to parents that are legally married, or who are born shortly after a marriage ends through divorce. The opposite of legitimacy is the status of being illegitimate, which is born to a woman and a man who are not married to one another. Learn more of this with the Austin paternity.
In the United States, in the early 1970s, a series of Supreme Court decisions abolished most, if not all, of the common-law disabilities of bastardy, as being violations of the equal-protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
In the United Kingdom and the United States, illegitimacy carried a strong social stigma. Unwed mothers were often encouraged, at times forced, to give their children up for adoption. Often an illegitimate child was reared by grandparents or married relatives as the "sister," "brother" or "cousin" of the unwed mother.
But by the final third of the 20th century, in the United States, all the states had adopted uniform laws that codified the responsibility of both parents to provide support and care for a child, regardless of the parents' marital status, and gave "illegitimate" as well as adopted persons the same rights to inherit their parents' property as anyone else. Learn more about this with the Austin paternity.
In the early 1970s, a series of Supreme Court decisions abolished most, if not all, of the common-law disabilities of bastardy, as being violations of the equal-protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Generally speaking, in the United States, "illegitimacy" has been supplanted by the concept, "born out of wedlockâ. Visit the Austin paternity for more information about this.
A contribution to the decline of "illegitimacy" had been made by increased ease of obtaining divorce. Prior to this, the mother and father of many a child had been unable to marry each other because one or the other was already legally bound, by civil or canon law, in a non-viable earlier marriage that did not admit of divorce. If you want more information regarding legitimacy and illegitimacy issues, then visit the Austin paternity for more details.