This post is worded as if I am writing to the parent, rather than his girlfriend. No disrespect intended.
You need to file a motion to estalish custody/vistation. Then once the court orders it, if the mother refuses to cooperate, you can move for a contempt order which could land mom in jail for a few days or have her picking up trash on the side of the road.
However, when a child has been separated from a parent for a long period of time, the child usually isn't much interested in seeing that parent, except out of initial curiousity. So, you could find yourself with very limited custody and your daughter may not want to see you.
What I'm saying here, is that this could turn into an expensive war with nothing good to come of it. The most effective way to get past this is to try to get the other parent to want to cooperate in the child's best interests. This isn't always easy, and it may requires that you swallow your ego and your sense of personal justice -- because you may find yourself begging for custody time. But, it can frequently produce a superior result to a fight.
I'm only telling you this last info, because you have been estranged from this child for a long time. If this weren't the case, then things would be much easier to resolve.
PS. I wouldn't be so quick to tell the other parent that you're having a new child with another woman. It may just make things unnecessarily difficult.
Parents have equal rights to custody of their children absent a request to the court to determine custody. There is no legal impediment to petitioning for custody while still being married, but it would be rather unusual to do so. Most attorneys would have to research the procedure.
I don't know why you're contemplating this process, and I"m not gonna ask.
I thought maybe you had something you didn't want to disclose.
The reason why the police cannot get involved is because there is no court order for custody in place -- not because the mother can refuse. As a counterexample, if the mother were to die today, the father could go to the house and take the child and the police would be unable to stop him even if the grandparents disagreed.
Because there's no court orders in place.
The court would probably view the removal of the child from his/her status quo home and parent after such a long period of time as child abuse -- maybe even criminal abuse -- so be careful.
The correct way to handle this is to get a temporary restraining order preventing the other parent from removing the child from the county without the other parent's consent or further orders of the court.
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