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*URGENT*Can I Take Custody Of Newborn Son?

Started by pvtjokers, Dec 30, 2008, 10:48:44 AM

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Sherry, Tigger, Waylan, Giggles & Kitty, I thank you all for taking time to respond to my situation. Kitty & Giggles, your strories are exactly why I choose to gather information from the 'general public via a forum'. The replies are more consistent online than I've received through local attorneys. Whether or not all the information is accurate or not I'd rather be knowledgable. Taking our newborn is a quick resolve to this dismal situation but inevitably the courts disdane would reign havoc throughout my life (more than the psycho "x" could ever inflict). I truly appreciate everyone taking time to post & giving your own perspectives. HaPpY NeW YeAr!


The biggest thing with any custody situation is DOCUMENT DOCUMENT DOCUMENT.  Get a journal and write down every single thing that happens with your ex, make sure to include date time and any kind of documentable information.  Try to get the situation out of a he said/she said scenario and have documentation regarding her behavior. 

None of us are here to paint a bleak picture, we are here just to share our stories, knowledge and thoughts.  Waylon is an advocate of fathers rights, as well as I am.  You are doing the right thing by gaining as much knowledge about child custody laws as you can.

Good luck and have a great new year!

Kitty C.

Don't discount your 'local' attys. too fast.  They may be able to quote you custody law, chapter and verse, in Florida, but they probably haven't a clue about how it works in TX.  If it were me, I would be searching for a family law atty. in the same county that the ex lives in.  That is where any and all court proceedings will take place and only an atty. who practices in that jurisdiction will know what the 'atmosphere' (biases for and against) of the current court.  Mainly because they've actually been in front of those judges arguing cases themselves.

One other thing, I would act quickly in obtaining legal counsel.  The reason is, if the ex starts atty. shopping (and if this is a small jurisdiction, population-wise), she just might know better who might be a better family law atty.  Call the local courthouse and ask who practices in primarily family law....they may or may not tell you, but if they do, that's a huge plus.  Or contact the county or state bar assoc. for some names.  Always ask for one who specializes in family law.  Legal counsel is no different than healthcare these days..you don't want a family doctor doing your brain surgery, and you don't want a general council handling your family law case.  Make sense?
Handle every stressful situation like a dog........if you can't play with it or eat it, pee on it and walk away.......


Sherry & Kitty I appreciate all your advice. I fully understand seeking an attorney who specializes in custody issues. The X's family showed up @ both hearings on the behalf of the Biological Fathers. Point is, the X doesn't have the support of her family nor funds to pursue exceptional legal representation. However I'm not naive to suggest she couldn't find ways to obtain proper counsel. Not sure if I can document all the instances of her physical & mental abuse but I do have one witness of the aftermath. I'm carrying on as if everything is status quo till Feb. 25th (due date) since I didn't want her to experience a stressful pregnancy (I'm compassionate & care about our unborn child). The X is unaware she's going to be the X in 2 months. Are there any suggestions for breaking the news I'm leaving & going back to Fl. once our child has been delivered? Guess I'm looking for a tactful way to bring her up to speed.  I've made arrangments to purchase the property she resides so she'll not have to pay rent. All of her income is allocated towards bills & I'm currently paying the monthly rent. Waylan stated I had rights as a father but what rights do I possess w/o going to court!?! It reads like fathers have zero rights until child support is requested. Fathers then have the right to pay support & file for visitation since visitation isn't a guarantee nor FREE! If the X doesnt' allow/follow the visitation schedule then a father has the right to go back into the judicial system. The scale surely tilts towards the X regardless of their mental stability or the well being of a child. Back to the original question. What rights does any father have before going to court? I'm comparing this frustration to solving a Rubics Cube. Thanks again.


Since you were never married, you have no legal right to the child once it is born. Yes, getting your name on the birth certificate is very good and you will then have rights but in order to get those rights, you will have to go to court. It will be VERY difficult for you to get custody without solid proof.

You buying the house will not matter for child support and will be looked upon as a gift so be careful there. Most states are strickly by the numbers.

The best chance you would have is to stay near the mother and get joint physical custody (and that is very hard to get too in some areas...unless you both agree..).

If you tell her now you are leaving she may not put you on the birth certificate and leave you out of the loop of the delivery.

The posters that gave you advice have been here for YEARS. Most have been in court MANY times...fathers SHOULD have equal rights but family court is not set up for that. It will take you MONTHS in court to get a schedule in place and during that time she does not "legally" have to let you see the baby. It is very unfair but this is the reality. The best advice is wait until after the baby is born and see if you can come up with an agreement outside of court. If this is your first child, take a CPR and parenting class. If not, file as soon as child is born for parenting/custody plan..

What will you be asking for in court? Full custody and be allowed to leave with child to FL? From experience that will not happen without the mother agreeing. They are not going to let a newborn move away from mother, especially if she starts breastfeeding. If the courts just ruled that she able to take care of the other child then she already proved she is now fit enough to parent. Going to be a long, drawn out battle...courts postpone, start you out with a few hours a week with the newborn and see how it goes for a month or so...things like that..not pretty.

Good luck!


Quote from: ocean on Dec 31, 2008, 12:16:21 PM
Since you were never married, you have no legal right to the child once it is born.
This isn't necessarily true, and it varies from state to state. You DO have parental rights, but getting and enforcing them can (will) be an uphill battle. Most of what people here are telling is true; most of these folks have been going through this sort of thing for years, so I'd recommend listening carefully to what they say.

I'd suggest you read these before doing anything:





The trouble with reality is that there's no background music.


I am reading your posts and I am going to play devil's advocate here....

You are a married man, having an affair and impregnated that person. 
You now consider her not to be a stellar person and one who should not have custody, but you continue to have a relationship with her while you are married under the pretense of being together for the baby.  You have not told her you are leaving her to go back to your wife once the baby is born, and you were seeking guidance on essentially how to remove the baby from her custody without engaging the courts. 

Honestly, I am not judging you, but if you are going to go on an attack of Mom and her character, one could consider your character as well and this battle will get very ugly, very fast.   

The fact is, you are going to have an upward battle on your hands, no matter if Mom has support of her family or not.  You have received some very good advice from everyone, but this may not be as clear cut as you think your road to custody will be.  Inclusive of all of the reasons everyone has already said, the courts will consider the fact you are leaving for FL, you will not be able to gain custody and relocate the child, that is a separate  battle from gaining custody.  The courts are highly unlikely  to let you remove a baby from Mom and the courts jurisdiction.  If you move --it is you, not her creating any limitations to how often and how frequently you will see your child.  The courts will also consider in a custody battle which parent is likely to foster the relationship with the other parent.  Seeing as you were contemplating removing the child without Mom's awareness and you have already said you are leaving for FL, that will be a huge factor in the court's decision. 

   Newborns can't speak so you now have no telephonic communication. A newborn can't be put on a plane so you will have to travel back to Tx to see the baby.  You will HAVE to get along with Mom for communication and updates and seeing as that will not be very likely after you leave her for your wife, you have a long drawn out mess on your hands. 

You have some serious thinking to do before you pursue custody  in a court of law.  You will have a battle for 1) custody 2) relocation (if you get custody) and 3) does your wife know and support this decision?

Each state is different and you being on the birth certificate (if Mom even does this) does not give you automatic rights. You HAVE to petition the courts for your rights.

Kitty C.

Some very good points, MomofTwo............
Handle every stressful situation like a dog........if you can't play with it or eat it, pee on it and walk away.......


Mom of two had some excellent advice and points.  Thank you!


Momoftwo, thanks for your unbiased input. However, I'd like to clarify a few remarks mentioned concerning the affair. I'm by far not an adolescent discovering life & am aware of the saying "grass is always greener" but I truly was unaware of the affairs unstable behavior & NEVER once witnessed verbal outbursts towards her existing children or myself until AFTER she became pregnant. I'm not delusional to think any relationship continues to be "Stellar" but some form of rational & normal dimeanor is expected especially when children are involved. If I were here to tarnish the affair,"go on an attach of mom & her character" or thought is was relevant I would've mentioned the alcohol & pharmaceutical abuse which continues throughout the pregnancy. Before the pregnancy the affair was taking (2) OxyContin, (2+) Vicodin, (2+) Soma DAILY! She switched to (2+) Delotin & (2+) Vicodin (2+) Soma DAILY two months into pregnancy. She's taking (4+) Tylenol 4's DAILY w/ a Soma chaser here & there (private reserve) since the script physician won't prescribe OxyContin nor Delotin anylonger. Need I mention the physical altercations!?! I'm sure there are thousands of couples that don't tell the entire story, however, trust me when I say, telling the whole story won't do the affair one ounce of merit. I've had a life FILLED with "Male Bashing" & apologize if I'm not prone to Female Bashing. As Ocean posted, "If you tell her now you are leaving she may not put you on the birth certificate and leave you out of the loop of the delivery". If you're playing devils advocate, what's the lessor of two evils? Tell her I'm leaving now before the delivery, risk complications for the remainder of the pregnancy (suicide/drug overdose) & not being allowed to be present for the birth OR once the child is born tell her I'm leaving & let the courts decide when I'm able to see our child!?!  Per my character in question, I was separated from my wife for over 1yr. not counting the several years emotionally. My wife was FULLY aware of my visits to Tx. & the divorce path our relationship was headed. I personally feel my wife needed a wake up call which she finally acknowledged once she realized I filed for a divorce. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I'm not going back to my wife rather returning to my house in Fl.. I'm also aware of the physical limitations of an infant which I'll take into account while I make EVERY effort to spend time with our child. My parents divorced when I was 3 & didn't know or see my biological father till my 18th birthday. Not to mention I received custody of my now 18 yr. old daughter when she was 9 due to the abandonment of her biological mother. Point is, I've been around a block or two but never once needed/wanted to remove an newborn/infant from the mother with or without the courts assistance. If custody becomes an issue, I won't be seeking anything more than the mother is willing to offer since I know how spiteful the entire process can be. In retort to my intial post, I merely wanted to gain awareness of the feasibility taking our newborn son & possible insite how to handle breaking the news to the affair I'll be heading back to Fl.. If we can keep the stream of thought on those 2 topics I would be greatly appreciated. Thanks again for everyones input. It's been therapeutic & Welcome to 2009! =)