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Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 41220
Experience:  I provide family and divorce law advice to my clients in my firm.
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I am a writer trying to get my facts straight in a situation.

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I am a writer trying to get my facts straight in a situation. This is a case of teenaged unmarried parents. The father is not on the birth certificate, although the mother acknowledges his paternity. She wants the baby to be adopted. He would like to have custody of the child. What legal steps would need to be made?
Thank you for your question.

In what state would this hypothetical situation would take place? In your book, do you want the father to prevail or the mother? How old is the child? Does the father pay support of any kind?

Edited by Dimitry Alexander Kaplun on 11/1/2010 at 5:36 PM EST
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you. Good questions. Takes place in Connecticut. I want the father to prevail. The child is three months old. The mother and the father have thus far been splitting the expenses for the child.
In that situation the father would have to petition the court for paternity, which the mother would contest. The father would have to request a DNA blood test on claims that the child is his, and that he wants proof of biological paternity. The mother can attempt to contest it, but if the father provides evidence that the mother permits the other parent to put the child off as his own, shares custody, and splits expenses, the judge would allow the test to go forward, most likely.

Then, when the result would come back and it would be positive, the father would then formally file a petition to assert his parental rights and add his name to the birth certificate. With evidence, and with the child's age it should be granted, even if the mother contests--usually the courts become less likely to grant requests once the children are older than 2 years old. Then, once parentage is assured, the new biological and legal parent can file for formal custody and visitation, but more importantly for the purposes of your book, can refuse to grant consent on the adoption. That will block the other mother from adopting the child out unless she either gets the father to agree, or she gets a court order permitting adoption to take place, which would not happen if the other parent is active in the child's life.

Good luck.

Edited by Dimitry Alexander Kaplun on 11/1/2010 at 6:02 PM EST
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you. That's incredibly helpful and just what I needed....I have one more question, though. The mother doesn't dispute the guy's paternity--she just wants to have the child adopted so neither of them have this responsibility. Would the father still need to do a DNA test in that case? Or would it be enough for the mother to sign an affidavit of paternity?
You are most welcome.

Yes, in that situation, to prove paternity, a DNA test would make him getting paternity rights later easier. That is because without paternity the mother can simply claim that he was "helping out" with the child but he has no real ties to the child. Therefore it would be best in his interest to get paternity done and prove rights first, as then the affidavit of paternity would no longer be able to be contested down the line.

Good luck.

Edited by Dimitry Alexander Kaplun on 11/1/2010 at 6:14 PM EST
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