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Can I serve a Georgia petition for legitimacy of my child on the child support office since I don't know where the mom lives?

Atlanta, GA |
Attorney answers 4


Short answer is no. Personal service has to go the the child's mother.

Darrell B. Reynolds, Sr.
Attorney and Counselor at Law

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First, you need to hire a family law attorney to represent you.

To answer your question, you cannot serve CSE as an agent or proxy for your child's mother, because CSE would not be a proper party, nor are they legally an authorized representative of a person receiving or paying child support to accept service of legal docs on that person's behalf. If you have not yet filed the action, I advise hiring an attorney and have a private investigator try to locate the mother, because the less you have to get the court involved, the better. Plus, you cannot proceed with an action involving children without the other party being properly served, nor is a court in Ga authorized to issue judgments re: children if there is service by publication (vs. personal service).

Based on past experience with CSE in Ga, I have a strong feeling that the only way (short of consent) that CSE would give up the name and address of the recipient would be if ordered to do so by a court. Notwithstanding, if there are legitimate reasons for not disclosing said information (e.g., concern for safety of the child and/or recipient parent, clear that such a domestic action would not be in the best interests of the child, etc., and this is not a comment on your case or yourself), you may not be able to get even a court to order the disclosure.


No. You cannot serve anyone with an initial pleading except the actual defendant.

I hope this information helps answer your question(s).

~ Kem Eyo

The above answer is a general explanation of legal rights and procedures. It does not constitute legal advice. Nor does it establish an attorney-client relationship between the individual posting the question and the attorney providing the answer.


You cannot serve the state, and since the case cannot be done by publication you must find the mother. To do this right you'll need to hire a private investigator and a lawyer. Good luck!

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