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  1. #1

    Default How to Get Full Legal Custody

    My question involves a child custody case from the State of: CA.

    I have always had full physical custody of my son. His father shares legal custody because it is usually always granted. Anyway, his father has not seen his son for over a year and has seen him about 50 times total in his life. He will be 4 soon. I have gone to court to be able to relocate my child anywhere, so he has no say in where we live, has no idea where we live, and knows nothing of this child. When I show my son a picture of his father, he has no idea who it is.

    I have a couple of things that we want to be able to do freely, with no interference: #1) I want to get a passport for my son and it requires a signature from both parents. If I don't know where he is, how am I to do this?

    #2) I want to get married and am thinking that the best thing for my son would be to be adopted by my husband. Does the other parent have to relinquish rights if this is to be accomplished?

    #3) I don't want this man appearing back into our lives and trying to take this child away from the only environment that he has known. He is known to go away for months at a time, to when it suits his life, then comes back in and expects my son to act like he is a loving caregiver. I don't want this inconsistency for my son. So, even if the adoption doesn't happen right away, full sole custody would help with this.

    Could you let me know how to go about getting full sole custody (legal/physical)? If I don't know where his father is, do I just register this in the state that I am residing in?

    I also want to note that there is no visitation agreement. I tried to set something up for 2010 in the fall of 2009, but he never responded and has been non responsive since then.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Somewhere near Canada

    Default Re: How to Get Full Legal Custody

    1. You can't. You have to have sole legal custody...which involves a court proceeding. Dad will have to be served, and because you claim not to be able to find him you may need to serve him via publication and for this you really need an attorney.

    2. Yes. This also needs an attorney - adoption is never a do-it-yourself process.

    3. Wrong. If the adoption doesn't happen, sole custody doesn't mean Dad can't get visitation rights. In fact, he can file for those any time he wants right up until the adoption is completed.

    You really need to speak with an attorney.

    And you need to reinforce to your child who his father is - because even if a stepparent adoption goes ahead, your child deserves to know his biological roots.
    An intelligent hell would be better than a stupid paradise - Victor Hugo

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