The Houston Family Law Blog

CDC Study: Teens Having Less Sex

A Center for Disease Control (CDC) study finds that the teen sex rate is down because teens are having less sex, reports the Houston Chronicle.

The report about the teen sex rate found that 43 percent of teen girls and 42 percent of boys have had sex at least once by the age of 19. Those numbers are down from 51.1 percent of girls and 60.4 percent of boys in 2002.

Not surprisingly, the teen birth rate is the lowest in recorded history. The teen birth rate is currently at 39 per 1,000.

Part of the reason for the drop in teen pregancy has to do with the use of contraception. Just about 78 percent of girls and 85 percent of boys use contraception — particularly the first time they have sex.

Of course, this is good news all around — and the lower teen sex rate and lower teen pregnancy rate also allows for less need for the implementation of Texas paternity laws.

Paternity laws are very useful in situations involving teen pregnancies. It is the Texas paternity laws, for example, that help to establish who the legal father is. Under Texas Law, a child born to a man and woman who are not married, is considered to have no legal father. So while an unmarried man might be a child’s “biological” father, that doesn’t make him the “legal” father. It is not until a biological father completes an “acknowledgment of paternity” to establish legal fatherhood that he becomes the legal father.

Also, not all teen pregnancies will lead to marriage, since most teens are not mature enough to decide who they should spend the rest of their life with. In these cases having a paternity test will make it easier for fathers to get visitation or enforce custody rights and for mothers to seek financial support from the fathers.

As teens have been made more aware of teen sex and teen pregnancy, they should also be made more aware of the legal consequences of having children.

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