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Child Custody, Child Parenting Time and Unmarried Fathers

Child Custody and Unmarried Fathers | Family Law Attorney Jeffrey M. Bloom

Child Custody, Child Parenting Time and Unmarried Fathers

Biological parents have a right to seek child custody and visitation rights regardless weather the parents were married when the child was born. The determining factor is always in the best interest of the child and includes unmarried fathers.

How to Establish Your Rights As A Father

The first step is to establish your paternity in order to begin the process. Both parents must sign acknowledgement of paternity (with the courts) at the time of birth or thereafter. In cases where paternity is disputed, a DNA test can confirm paternity and establish rights to a father including child parenting time and child custody.

Parenting Time Agreements

Many parents negotiate a parenting plan whereby they determine who will have primary custody, visitation frequency and days, holiday schedules, who makes final decisions on the child’s healthcare or religion, and procedures for handling changes to the agreement.

Court Orders and Parenting Plans

Parents who can agree to a parenting plan may file it with a court, asking the judge to approve and incorporate it into a court order on visitation and/or custody. Having the agreement become part of a court order allows either parent a direct way to enforce his or her parental rights.

If the parents cannot agree on visitation or custody arrangements, either one may ask the court to grant his or her request through a contested hearing. Generally, courts presume that children benefit from having both parents involved in their upbringing. This presumption can be overcome if one parent can show that visitation or custody by the other parent would likely cause harm to the child.

New Jersey Child Custody and Visitation Lawyer

To learn more about the rights of unmarried fathers on child custody and parenting time, contact The Law Offices of Jeffrey M. Bloom today at 855-208-3650 to schedule your consultation.

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