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Law Pro
Law Pro, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 24869
Experience:  20 years practicing family law from divorce, custody, support, alimony to equitable distribution
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Ive been married for about 12 yrs and never adopted my estranged

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I've been married for about 12 yrs and never adopted my estranged wife's son, who I've raised for the past 13 yrs and he's almost 16 now. What are my chances of getting full custody of him?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Law Pro replied 7 years ago.
Is the father still alive and have anything to do with the child?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
It is unknown if the father is still alive or what state he might live in. His father never had anything to do with him and has not seen him since he was 3yrs old (when we started dating) or maybe longer. Sometime ago, he settled on paying a lump sum of money to seize anymore child support payments. Since I've been separated (April 09), I've had full custody of him and my 2 daughters. She has shown little interest in seeing them, but I have never denied her the opportunity to.
Expert:  Law Pro replied 7 years ago.

Yes, then under the circumstances I believe that a court would give you primary custody of the child.


Where does the child want to live?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
All three want to live with me. Plus, she has never given me a dime of child support, and I've never asked for anything.
Expert:  Law Pro replied 7 years ago.

First, because of the age of the child - that although he is not of the age of majority or emancipated - he can inform the court with whom he wants to live if the judge deems him mature enough to make the decision. His being almost 16 would seem self-evident that he's mature enough to know what's in his best interest and where he wants to live.


Second, I would go file an emergency motion for primary custody with the family court to make sure you obtain a court order. I'm sure that, under the circumstances, the court will award you temporary primary custody of the child. Thereafter the judge will list the matter for a full hearing (if necessary).


Prior to that hearing - I'm sure if she's any type of mother and has any sense and realizes with whom the child wants to live with and with the pending charges against her - that she will realize she's fighting an uphill battle and will just consent to your being the primary custodian of the child.


That although you haven't adopted the child - the court makes a determination based upon "the best interests of the child(ren)" regardless of who is involved.

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