Every parent should play a role in the life of their child. For fathers of children born out of wedlock, this can be a challenging process. Jim Cummings works with Dads to assert their Father's Rights by establishing paternity and working through the child custody and child support process.
The Role of a Father in Their Child's Life
While historically society and family law courts have leaned towards giving mothers custody there has been a major shift in that line of thinking. Now it is a commonly held belief by the family law courts in Connecticut that it is in the best interest of the child to have a relationship with both their father and mother. While that doesn't necessarily make the path towards fathers' rights simple or easy, it's a process that we can help you work as through effectively and efficiently as possible.
Establishing Paternity of a Child Born Out of Wedlock
The first step in moving through the process is establishing legal paternity. Under Connecticut law when a child is born to married parents the father is automatically granted paternity. If the parents are unwed, then Paternity must be established. This can be done voluntarily or by court order. Establishing Paternity Voluntarily If both the mother and father agree and acknowledge that they are indeed the parents of the child, they can sign a “Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity” declaration. Once this is signed, both parents are acknowledging that this man is the father of the child. The acknowledgement form becomes final 60 days after hit has been signed. Once the order is in place, a judge has the ability to make orders related to child support payments, child visitation and providing of medical insurance for the child.
If you are being asked to sign a Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity and have any questions, hesitations or doubt, contact my office immediately. This is a powerful document with long-lasting effects.
Establishing Paternity Through a Court Order in Connecticut
If one or both parents is unwilling to sign the voluntary acknowledgement, then either the mother or the presumed father has the right to request that the court help them in establishing paternity. There are a number of parties who can initiate the process of petitioning the court to begin the process of establishing paternity.
- The child's mother
- Any man who believes he is the child's father
- Any man who has been identified as the child's father • Town welfare Administrator • Connecticut Dept. of Social Services
Fathers' Rights and Visitation / Child Custody
Once the paternity has been established, the father can work towards getting a visitation schedule and shared custody arrangement. Again, the family law court here is looking out for the best interest of the child. Generally uprooting a child who has an established relationship to a school or social group is not ideal. Requesting that a child move also would require fairly extreme circumstances. Every situation is unique; in a consultation, attorney Cummings can help you understand what would be reasonable to expect from your situation.
Contact Us Today – Waterbury CT Fathers' Rights Lawyer
Hiring a lawyer is a big decision. The process of establishing paternity and gaining fathers' rights takes time and effort. It's important that you have an advocate who is willing to fight for you. Contact Jim Cummings today to learn how he can work through the process in an effective manner and help you establish a role in your child's life.