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  1. #1
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    Jul 2013
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    Default Absent Father Seeking Custody

    My question involves a child custody case from the State of: California
    My son was born 5 months ago, his father moved out of state when I was 6 months pregnant and was not present during the birth and has never seen the baby. I was told that paternity was established recently and he's threatening to ask for custody. He was physically and emotionally abusive for the majority of my pregnancy. Can he file for custody from his home state of Rhode Island? And does he really have a case if he's never tried to be involved? He's only doing this to upset me because I won't continue the relationship.

  2. #2
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    Apr 2008
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    Bunker Hill, West Virginia
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    Default Re: Absent Father Seeking Custody

    How could paternity be established if no DNA test was done on your son?

    I don't know the laws in California, but here in Virginia, the father can go to court for a paternity determination (DNA testing on him and baby to determine paternity), and then if he is proven by DNA to be the father, he can go to court to file for whatever he wants -- custody or visitation. HOWEVER, he has to file in the state where the baby lives.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Inland Empire
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    1,410

    Default Re: Absent Father Seeking Custody

    Quote Quoting Cmoon
    View Post
    My question involves a child custody case from the State of: California
    My son was born 5 months ago, his father moved out of state when I was 6 months pregnant and was not present during the birth and has never seen the baby. I was told that paternity was established recently and he's threatening to ask for custody. He was physically and emotionally abusive for the majority of my pregnancy. Can he file for custody from his home state of Rhode Island? And does he really have a case if he's never tried to be involved? He's only doing this to upset me because I won't continue the relationship.
    Who told you that paternity was established? Were you or are you and dad married?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    16,185

    Default Re: Absent Father Seeking Custody

    Quote Quoting Cmoon
    View Post
    My question involves a child custody case from the State of: California
    My son was born 5 months ago, his father moved out of state when I was 6 months pregnant and was not present during the birth and has never seen the baby. I was told that paternity was established recently and he's threatening to ask for custody. He was physically and emotionally abusive for the majority of my pregnancy. Can he file for custody from his home state of Rhode Island? And does he really have a case if he's never tried to be involved? He's only doing this to upset me because I won't continue the relationship.
    Unless you filed for child support and paternity was established via the CSE (which means he could have been tested in RI), paternity could not have been established. Your son would have had to be tested as well.

    However, as far as custody/visitation is concerned dad would have to file for that in your state, and his odds of winning would be slim to none, and slim has left the building. He could and would however get joint legal custody (joint decision making) and a parenting schedule. He would have to start out visiting in your community at first.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
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    2

    Default Re: Absent Father Seeking Custody

    I applied for child support but decided to retract it, the case worker said they still needed to establish paternity because the baby was receiving medi-cal benefits. They sent him the paperwork which he did not send back in the alloted time and was not cooperating. I called the case worker yesterday for an update and they were going ahead with establishing him as the father by default. My ex has been threatening me with askin for custody for months.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Inland Empire
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    1,410

    Default Re: Absent Father Seeking Custody

    Quote Quoting Cmoon
    View Post
    I applied for child support but decided to retract it, the case worker said they still needed to establish paternity because the baby was receiving medi-cal benefits. They sent him the paperwork which he did not send back in the alloted time and was not cooperating. I called the case worker yesterday for an update and they were going ahead with establishing him as the father by default. My ex has been threatening me with askin for custody for months.
    Custody and support are two very different things. Unless he comes to California he will not be able to seek custody or visitation.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    244

    Default Re: Absent Father Seeking Custody

    Quote Quoting Cmoon
    View Post
    I applied for child support but decided to retract it, the case worker said they still needed to establish paternity because the baby was receiving medi-cal benefits. They sent him the paperwork which he did not send back in the alloted time and was not cooperating. I called the case worker yesterday for an update and they were going ahead with establishing him as the father by default. My ex has been threatening me with askin for custody for months.
    He can ask for lots of things, the question is will he get the things he is asking for. Can't answer a yes or no on that. However since the state is establishing paternity by default, that will make dad the legal dad. Once paternity is established he can file for custody, parenting time and child support modifications. He will get some kind of parenting time order. Custody, hard to say if he will get any custody. Different kinds of custody, there is sole custody, joint legal custody, joint physical custody, which may or may not be true 50/50 physical placement. Even if you were to start out where the court gave you sole custody, dad later on can file to have a custody modification.

    Since the child is an infant and dad has never had any contact with the child, chances are high that he would have to come to CA to have parenting time at first. Most likely he would get some kind of graduated plan that eventually gives him parenting time in his state. Dad created the distance, so ask the court to make dad responsible for all transportation associated with his parenting time.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    16,185

    Default Re: Absent Father Seeking Custody

    Just to add, again it would require dad to file in CA...and require dad to be present in court in CA, probably multiple times before the case is finished.

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