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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    11

    Question What is Considered "Abandonment" in Florida

    I have a question concerning a parents rights in the state of Florida.

    I have a 5 month old son with my ex-boyfriend. When my son was 3 months old I took him and moved out of my ex's house because my ex is an alcoholic who refuses to get help. In the last 2 months, my ex has seen his son about 5 times at my home (from 20 - 45 mintues each visit), and he has picked his son up for 5 or 6 hour stretches only twice (at my urging). He has not seen, nor attempted to see his son in over 2 weeks now even though I have made many, many attempts to try and get him to spend time with him. Yesterday my ex told me via text message that I won't ever be hearing from again. I sent one back letting him know to call me when he has come to his senses and that his son NEEDS him in his life! I know my ex, and I have no doubts that we will not hear from him for a very, very long time.
    So my question is this: If he does in fact disappear from our lives now, how much time must go by before I can take legal steps to have my son considered "abandoned" by his father? The reason I want to do this is because I will not put my son thru the ups and downs of having a father who pops in and out of his life once every few years. And also because I don't want my ex to be able to one day try to enforce his legal rights, even though he hasn't been around for years. I have no other "man" in my life at this time, but one day if I do, I'd like for my son to be able to be adopted by any future husband I may have without me having to try and track down his bio and having to convince him to sign over his rights. Sorry, I'm making this longer than it probably needs to be. But I just want all the details in there. Oh, and my ex has given me a total of $60 in the past 2 months even though he makes about $1000-$3000 every 1-2 weeks, so there is zero financial support also.

    Thanks for any answers you may have for me!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    2,772

    Default Re: What is Considered "Abandonment" in Florida

    Quote Quoting samasc
    View Post
    I have a question concerning a parents rights in the state of Florida.

    I have a 5 month old son with my ex-boyfriend. When my son was 3 months old I took him and moved out of my ex's house because my ex is an alcoholic who refuses to get help. In the last 2 months, my ex has seen his son about 5 times at my home (from 20 - 45 mintues each visit), and he has picked his son up for 5 or 6 hour stretches only twice (at my urging). He has not seen, nor attempted to see his son in over 2 weeks now even though I have made many, many attempts to try and get him to spend time with him. Yesterday my ex told me via text message that I won't ever be hearing from again. I sent one back letting him know to call me when he has come to his senses and that his son NEEDS him in his life! I know my ex, and I have no doubts that we will not hear from him for a very, very long time.
    So my question is this: If he does in fact disappear from our lives now, how much time must go by before I can take legal steps to have my son considered "abandoned" by his father? The reason I want to do this is because I will not put my son thru the ups and downs of having a father who pops in and out of his life once every few years. And also because I don't want my ex to be able to one day try to enforce his legal rights, even though he hasn't been around for years. I have no other "man" in my life at this time, but one day if I do, I'd like for my son to be able to be adopted by any future husband I may have without me having to try and track down his bio and having to convince him to sign over his rights. Sorry, I'm making this longer than it probably needs to be. But I just want all the details in there. Oh, and my ex has given me a total of $60 in the past 2 months even though he makes about $1000-$3000 every 1-2 weeks, so there is zero financial support also.

    Thanks for any answers you may have for me!
    Did he sign the AOP when child was born?

    Are there any court orders that established legal paternity?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: What is Considered "Abandonment" in Florida

    Well he signed the birth certificate and whatever else they handed us at the time. There have been no court orders or anything like that. I thought that in Florida (and maybe everywhere, I don't know) that if he signs the BC that he has legal rights, unless and until there's a paternity test proving otherwise. Which is no issue here. He is the father.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    2,772

    Default Re: What is Considered "Abandonment" in Florida

    Quote Quoting samasc
    View Post
    Well he signed the birth certificate and whatever else they handed us at the time. There have been no court orders or anything like that. I thought that in Florida (and maybe everywhere, I don't know) that if he signs the BC that he has legal rights, unless and until there's a paternity test proving otherwise. Which is no issue here. He is the father.
    You really need to go and file for a CS order. If you have that, and he doesn't pay, it will be easier to prove abandonment later.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: What is Considered "Abandonment" in Florida

    Right. Well, I've told him from the beginning that I wasn't going to do that because I don't want his money and I don't need his money. And that's the truth. People tell me that I'm crazy and that legally and morally he should be helping me out financially. But honestly I just don't want his (damn) money! Call me stubborn. He wouldn't pay it anyway. He's been behind on his CS to his ex-wife for the past 2 years.
    So do you think that even if I don't go after him for CS that I could still have a pretty good case if he doesn't see his son or help me out of his own accord for, say, a year? I've kept meticulas (sp) records of the few times he's seen him, the few supplies he's bought and the whole $60 he's given me in the past month and half that we've been broken up.
    Also, is there something I could file or something that gives me legal full custody? (Meaning that we don't have some sort of 50/50 custody arrangement or anything) Or is that just assumed since I'm the mother?
    Thanks again!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    636

    Default Re: What is Considered "Abandonment" in Florida

    You need to file for CS through the court. Then you will have legal documentation.

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