Family Law Questions? Ask a Family Lawyer Online.
-Could you explain your situation a little more?Are there any court orders in effect with respect to custody, visitation or child support at this time?
Have you acknowledged paternity on the birth certificate or in any court of law?
No court orders or visitation are in affect at this time. I have been voluntarily paying $250/month in child support for over a year, despite my sons mother requesting that I not pay.
Paternity is established on the birth certificate.
I have not seen my son in 7 months.
Dear JACUSTOMER - The jurisdiction over the child will be in the family law court in the county where the child resides so that is where you will have to file your case for your paternal rights. You have an equal right to your child as does the mother but in the cases of small children the mother will normally get custody and the father visitation especially in a situation such as this. Since you live far away I doubt you could visit every other weekend so the court will set up visitation for a long distance situation meaning several weeks at a time and a week at the holidays etc. You will be required to pay child support based on the respective incomes of the parties so I cannot say that what you have been paying will be the same under the court guidelines. Once you file your motion the court will set the matter for a hearing. I would strongly suggest that, if possible, you obtain a local attorney in the county where the case is to be filed. This can get complicated and, while you are entitled to your rights there can be complications when you get into a court case, especially if the mother has legal counsel. I have provided below the website for the Bar Association who you can contact for a referral to an attorney if you choose to do so.