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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    1

    Default Step Parent Rights

    My question involves a child custody case from the State of: Ohio
    My husband who is not the biological father of my 14 year old daughter is threatening to take my daughter from me when we divorce. He says that my daughter wants to stay with him. My question is, what is his rights to my child? I share custody with her biological father and my parents. Is there anyway that he could possibly and legally take my child?
    Over the last 3 weeks, he has done everything in his power to "stack his deck". He has called the police and told them I was suicidal, he has called Child protective services and told them that my daughter is afraid of me and I am abusive. I have NEVER even spanked my child!! I need to find out my legal rights, what I can do to stop him and his harassment. He has created a very hostile and unbearable living environment between my daughter and myself.
    Thank you

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Default Re: Step Parent Rights

    My question is, what is his rights to my child?
    Zero. None. Zip. Nada. Bupkiss.

    Legally, he is a stranger to your daughter. She already has two parents - you, and your ex, with whom you share custody.

    He can bluster and threaten all he wants, he's not getting custody of your daughter. The courts won't even remotely consider it.
    I'm not a lawyer, but I play a researcher on the internet!
    Caution: I bite. WARNING: Do not send questions or complaints by PM. I'm likely to post them publicly and embarrass you half to death.
    I'm training for the MS Society's Bike to the Bay - and blogging about it!

  3. #3

    Default Re: Step Parent Rights

    Several states have rejected the concept of “de facto parent” among them are: Kentucky, West Virginia, Ohio, Vermont and New York.


    Ohio in the unpublished opinion in IN RE: CHEYENNE MADISON JONES ruled in a
    case involving two women, that Ms Dvorak (the non-biological partner) was neither the natural nor the adoptive parent of Cheyenne, therefor she cannot be a "parent" within the meaning of Ohio law, and she is not entitled to an award of parental rights under the statute without first proving that Jones is unsuitable.

    Ms Dvorak resided with Cheyenne's biological and legal mother, Ms Jones for several years prior to Cheyenne's birth and she had helped plan Cheyenne's conception and birth. Ms Dvorak asserted that, after Cheyenne's birth, she had acted as one of Cheyenne's co-custodians, providing care and support for several years. Ms Dvorak and Ms Jones separated and visitation occurred regularly between Cheyenne and Ms Dvorak until Ms Jones terminated contact. The court rejected Ms Dvorak’s request for custody, visitation, support and other relevant matters.


    reference: http://www.steuartlaw.com/De_Facto_Parents.pdf

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Step Parent Rights

    Excellent job, Joe.

    (I'm going to answer your PM later )

    Additionally, in this case even if Ohio DID recognize that stepdad was in a parental role, stepdad would have to prove that not just Mom but Dad and the grandparents (evidently - not sure how that happened, but ok) were unfit!

  5. #5
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    Nov 2009
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    Default Re: Step Parent Rights

    Chances are highly unlikely that the step parent would EVER get visitation. EVER. I've never heard of any case where that happened.

    And while the Ohio case cited is interesting, given that it's unpublished, it is NOT precedent.

    Just an FYI.

  6. #6
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    Minneapolis/St. Paul area
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    Default Re: Step Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting EA1970
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    Chances are highly unlikely that the step parent would EVER get visitation. EVER. I've never heard of any case where that happened.

    And while the Ohio case cited is interesting, given that it's unpublished, it is NOT precedent.

    Just an FYI.
    I disagree, EA1970. I know several states that will grant a former step-parent visitation rights to his/her former step child, provided that certain criteria are met. However, the step-parent will, with 99.9% certainty, never get CUSTODY of a step-child.

  7. #7
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    Nov 2009
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    Default Re: Step Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting NdK1009
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    I disagree, EA1970. I know several states that will grant a former step-parent visitation rights to his/her former step child, provided that certain criteria are met. However, the step-parent will, with 99.9% certainty, never get CUSTODY of a step-child.
    The state in question here is Ohio. This child has two parents and while the case cited doesn't serve as legal precedent, it definitely shows the attitude of the courts in Ohio towards providing custody or visitation to legal strangers.

    It is HIGHLY doubtful that the court is going to split this child's time between the CP, the NCP, and a step-parent who has made (according to the OP) false accusations to CPS.

    Historically grandparents have been hard pressed to gain visitation rights, although courts have recently started to recognize their rights.

    They've granted visitation rights for children born to same sex couples.

    But a step-parent?

    The situation would have to be beyond extraordinary for this to occur in this situation and in this state, especially given the fact that the child has two living biological parents. They aren't going to cut out visitation or parenting time in favor of a step-parent.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Step Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting EA1970
    View Post
    Chances are highly unlikely that the step parent would EVER get visitation. EVER. I've never heard of any case where that happened.

    And while the Ohio case cited is interesting, given that it's unpublished, it is NOT precedent.

    Just an FYI.


    Um....did you read the case?

    The step was NOT ordered visitation...that was precisely both Joe's and my point.

    It supports what you've said here. I'm not entirely sure what you're disagreeing with.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
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    Default Re: Step Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting Dogmatique
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    Um....did you read the case?

    The step was NOT ordered visitation...that was precisely both Joe's and my point.

    It supports what you've said here. I'm not entirely sure what you're disagreeing with.
    Not disagreeing. Just pointing out that unpublished cases aren't considered legal precedent. In other words, you can cite them but if you're arguing a case, you're much better off citing a published case.

    That's all.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Step Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting EA1970
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    Not disagreeing. Just pointing out that unpublished cases aren't considered legal precedent. In other words, you can cite them but if you're arguing a case, you're much better off citing a published case.

    That's all.


    Fairy nuff!

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