CA Welf & Inst Code Section 726.4


At the disposition hearing, in any case where the court orders the care, custody, and control of the minor to be under the supervision of the probation officer for foster care placement pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 727, the court shall inquire of the mother and any other appropriate person as to the identity and address of all presumed or alleged fathers. The presence at the hearing of a man claiming to be the father shall not relieve the court of its duty of inquiry. The inquiry may include all of the following:


Whether a judgment of paternity already exists.


Whether the mother was married or believed she was married at the time of conception of the child or at any time thereafter.


Whether the mother was cohabiting with a man at the time of conception or birth of the child.


Whether the mother has received support payments or promises of support with respect to the child or in connection with her pregnancy.


Whether any man has formally or informally acknowledged or declared his possible paternity of the child.


Whether paternity tests have been administered and the results, if any.


If, after the court inquiry, one or more men are identified as an alleged father, each alleged father shall be provided notice at his last and usual place of abode by certified mail return receipt requested alleging that he is or could be the father of the child. The notice shall state that the child is the subject of proceedings under Section 602 and that the proceedings could result in the termination of parental rights and adoption of the child. Nothing in this section shall preclude a court from terminating a father’s parental rights even if he appears at the hearing and files an action under Section 7630 or 7631 of the Family Code.


The court may determine that the failure of an alleged father to return the certified mail receipt is not good cause to continue a hearing pursuant to Section 682.


If a man appears in the delinquency action and files an action under Section 7630 or 7631 of the Family Code, the court shall determine if he is the father.


After a petition has been filed to declare a minor a ward of the court, and until the time that the petition is dismissed, wardship is terminated, or parental rights are terminated pursuant to Section 727.31, the juvenile court which has jurisdiction of the wardship action shall have exclusive jurisdiction to hear an action filed under Section 7630 or 7631 of the Family Code.
Last Updated

Aug. 19, 2023

§ 726.4’s source at ca​.gov