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legaleagle, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 13441
Experience:  Practicing attorney for 10 years
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How many months is considered abandoment of a child?

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How many months is considered abandoment of a child? My daughter stopped seeing her father in may 2012 and he made no attempt to contact me to see her even when i saw him in public and then I recieved a letter from his attorny on nov 30 requesting I do a mediation. Is him being absent from her life for 6.5 months and making no effort to be in her life grounds for a judge to no give him rights? Also he wants to jump into over nights when she has not stayed with him or any of his family for over 1.5 years and only his mom has contacted be about seeing her since may 2011 nothing from him

Thank you for contacting with your question. I will provide legal information related to your question.

The law does not set out a definite number of months for it to be abandonment. The parent has to leave with the intent not to return, which is hard to prove even if he made no contact in 6.5 months. If he says he intended to see her but had obstacles that will be enough for a court. He is unlikely to get overnight visits since he has no relationship to show why he should get overnight but he will likely get day visits to try to establish the lost relationship. If your daughter is 12 or older and does not want visits the court can take her wishes under consideration.
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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

she is only 3.5 and very much attached to me and shows no interest in her father at all, she is reminded of him daily as she has a picture of her with him in her room. Will they likely take that into consideration? as well as how long it took him to even establish rights when she was born? he was absent the whole pregnancy and did not establish rights till she was 4 mo old


Yes her young age and lack of bond is significant. Since you are her only constant the court will not stress your child with long visits until the father actually becomes a constant and has a relationship. It also is useful to show he was not around during the pregnancy and waited 4 months for paternity.