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Title 68 Health, Safety and Environmental Protection


Chapter 3 Vital Records ACT OF 1977

68-3-302. Birth inside institution - Establishing paternity - Acknowledgment of paternity - Report.

(a) When a birth occurs in an institution or en route to an institution, the person in charge of the institution, or that person's designated representative, shall obtain the data required by the certificate, prepare the certificate, certify that the child was born alive at the place and time and on the date stated, either by signature or by an approved electronic process, and file the certificate with the office of vital records or as otherwise directed by the state registrar within the required ten (10) days.

(b) The physician in attendance shall provide the medical information required by the certificate to the institution's designated representative within seventy-two (72) hours after the birth.

(c) Immediately before or after the birth of a child to an unmarried woman in a birthing institution, an authorized representative of the birthing institution shall provide to the mother, and, if present, the biological father:

(1) Written and oral information concerning the alternatives to, the legal consequences of, the rights, and the responsibilities arising from the completion of the voluntary acknowledgment. The information shall be provided to the birthing institution by the department of human services, which shall develop the information in conjunction with the department of health. A videotaped or audio presentation will satisfy the requirement for the oral explanation.

(2) An acknowledgment of paternity on a form approved pursuant to § 68-3-305(b), and shall provide the opportunity to complete and submit to the institution the acknowledgment form.

(d) The birthing institution or other entity receiving the voluntary acknowledgment of paternity shall forward the original, signed acknowledgment of paternity to the office of vital records, and shall send a copy of the signed and notarized acknowledgment of paternity to the Title IV-D child support agency where the mother resides, if the mother or child is receiving temporary assistance pursuant to title 71, chapter 3, part 1, medicaid, TennCare, or any successor programs. Copies of the signed and notarized voluntary acknowledgment of paternity shall also be provided to the mother and father of the child. The copies shall be deemed originals.

(e) The department of health shall annually assess the numbers of acknowledgments of paternity as compared with the numbers of out-of-wedlock births by each birthing institution, and shall prepare a report of the results, which shall be provided to the department of human services or other persons or agencies that request it.

(f) Voluntary paternity establishment services through hospitals and the department of health shall be offered in accordance with federal regulations as prescribed by the secretary of health and human services.

Acts 1977, ch. 128, § 6; T.C.A., § 53-442; Acts 1994, ch. 988, § 11; 1997, ch. 551, §§ 36-38; 1998, ch. 891, § 1; 1998, ch. 1098, § 63; 2001, ch. 139, §§ 1-3; 2004, ch. 432, § 1.

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