Unmarried Fathers Rights

Parents too, birth father’s for children born out of wedlock have rights.  As do de facto fathers who are not found to be related to a child.  The same best interests and welfare for the children considerations apply. 

  1. For the birth father, the procedure follows the filing of a Paternity Action that gives Dad the availability if court orders both before and after mother gives birth.  
  2. For the non-bio Dad, a custody action is filed. Here the issue of best interests and welfare both governs the non-bio Dad’s access to rights as well as the visitation and custody plan ordered by the court.  For example where non-bio Dad has lived with the child and the child has come to know him as Dad in fact, even when clearly not bio Dad, as where non-bio Dad’s surname differs from the child’s  and where child has never regarded him as his true bio-Dad, if found to have provided the predominant Dad’s role for the child.  Bond, not biology, rules.  

Fathers Rights To See Children

Whether divorced bio-Dad, never married bio-Dad or a de facto non bio-Dad are rights governed by the familiar best interests and welfare test.  That rule applies both as to the answer to question whether — as well as to the question as to how much.  In cases of abuse or domestic violence the answer to the question could understandably be, No visitation for a perpetrator, as well as supervised contact for him are possible outcomes even where the biology runs deep in the connecting blood lines /- per stripes. 

Fathers Rights Law Center specializes in actions to reunify Fathers denied contact based on alienation issues as well as where abuse has intervened to have denied Father contact.

Birth Fathers Rights and de facto Fathers in Adoption – a De Facto Father, one who has assumed the role without testing positive for the biology like bio-Dads can adopt and can foil adoptions by others.  While the playing field in adoption cases shifts to the Probate Court, from the Family Court, the general consideration remain the same.  Best interests not biology rules.

Paternity Rights

Unmarried bio birth fathers, while having no absolute rights to visitation and custody,  have a right to be screened by the courts therefore.  But again best interests and welfare for the child, not biology , rules. 

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