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My son (21 years old) has a child and he is not married to…

My son (21 years old)...
My son (21 years old) has a child and he is not married to the mother (20 years old) but they are in a relationship. Should they break up, what are the chances that he would get custody. They currently both live with me with the child. They are not able to survive on their own. Her family is on government assistance and father is a heroin addict.
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Answered in 2 hours by:
3/27/2018
Sean K
Sean K, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 418
Experience: Family Law Attorney in Private Law Firm
Verified

Hi, I’m Sean and I will be assisting you as an expert today. I’m an attorney with more than 20 years of experience. It is my goal to provide a solid overview of your situation. Whether the analysis is good or bad as to your matter, I want to make sure you understand any points you need and that you have options to better address the questions you have. If I am able, I will also provide you with some resources. Please note that the system, independent from me, may offer a phone call. You are not obligated to engage in a phone call, but I am happy to speak if you desire. This is completely up to you.

It is always a good thing to ask questions in advance before problems arise. First, i hope they don't break up and this does not become an issue, but there are things that can be done now to best situation your son for custody if something does or were to happen.

The main thing is to make sure that he is involved. He should be focused on the care, feeding and nurturing of the child. He should be going to doctor's visits, he should be involved with the daycare, he should be doing an equal part of everything with the child. He should also take steps to show that his residence is the primary residence for the child - the address should be for the point of contact and make sure he is listed on all records.

Have you son spend time around other people with his child so you can have witness statements if necessary on how he interacts with and how he spends time with his son.

The goal is to have him be involved no so much so that if something does happen she has already allowed him to be an active participant in the child's life so he could seek custody if he wanted.

In New York, if there is no Court order, both parents have equal rights to the child. So even if she left, she absent her getting a Court Order, could not take away those rights. I mention this as sometimes people believe the Mother has a preference, but this is not the case.

The Courts look at what is best for a child and the best way to prove this is to show that things, like I have said above, have already occurred or are occurring.

That having been said, if she does try to leave and she tries to take his child, be careful about any violence around the child as that could be a problem later on. It would be best if they were to break up if she left and the child stayed. But if she does leave and takes the child, he will need to get a lawyer and get to Court immediately. If she leaves and has nowhere to go, he could likely get the child back on an emergency basis and go from there.

Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. There is no specific course of action is proposed and no attorney-client relationship or privilege formed within this conversation.

If you have any follow up questions it would be my pleasure to answer them. As experts we only get credit for the time and effort we spend on our answers if you rate us positively - 5 stars is definitely appreciated but not required! There is no cost associated with you rating me and you can still ask follow up questions after rating me and I will respond.

One final point, there may be a delay between your question and my answer; this is because I'm either not at my computer or helping someone else but rest assured, if you ask, I will provide an answer. Thank you again.

Sean K
Sean K, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 418
Experience: Family Law Attorney in Private Law Firm
Verified
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Sean K
Sean K
Sean K, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 418
418 Satisfied Customers
Experience: Family Law Attorney in Private Law Firm

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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