Orlando, FL – November 14, 2017 – As an unmarried Florida father, you are facing a lot of uncertainty. What rights do you have regarding your children? What are your responsibilities? How can you protect your rights and your relationship with your children?
Understanding The Legal Process
The best way to obtain and protect your rights is through the legal process with the assistance of a Florida Father’s Rights Attorney, even if you and the mother are currently on good terms. She could, at any time, decide to relocate or otherwise sever ties between you and your child, and without the proper legal protection in place, there is essentially nothing you can do to enforce your rights.
Step 1. Establishing Paternity
Establishing paternity is the first step in obtaining Father’s Rights. If you were married at the time your child was born, then it is assumed that you are the biological father. However, if you were not married and did not sign the birth certificate and claim paternity, then you may have to establish paternity through the court system.
If the mother of your child was married to another man at the time your child was born, then the presumption of paternity of him as the father can make the process more challenging, especially if the other man has been acting as father to the child for an extended period of time.
Once you have established legal paternity of your child or children, you are then only able to work toward obtaining your Fathers Rights.
Step 2. Responsibilities First
Before you can enjoy your rights as a father, you first must deal with your responsibilities. Whether you work towards obtaining any rights of access, once you are legally established as a father, you have a financial responsibility to your child, commonly referred to as child support.
Child support is determined on a case by case basis, based on current Florida paternity law. Your family law attorney will help you understand what you can expect to pay. Once you have taken financial responsibility for your child, only then can you begin to establish rights regarding your children.
Step 3. Obtaining Father’s Rights
You have the right to an ongoing relationship with your child or children, and the best way to protect that right is through the legal process. The State of Florida uses a document called a parenting plan, which defines each parent’s decision-making and time-sharing rights.
Historically, mother’s have frequently been given full-custody of their child, however this is no longer the case. Child Custody is now handled in a more equitable way, focused on providing both parents ample time and access, based on what is in the best interests of the child.
Your Paternity Attorney will assist you in developing a Parenting Plan and Time Sharing Agreement that will work for both you and the mother of your child, keeping in mind your work schedules and the activity schedules of the children. If you and the mother can establish a working plan on your own, that plan will typically be accepted by the courts without adjustments. However, if you are unable to reach an agreement, the courts will determine a plan for you, and you will have no option but to adhere to it.
Modification & Enforcement of Rights
Once you have established your rights, you will now have the assistance of local law enforcement to ensure your rights are protected. Your Father’s Rights Attorney will assist you as well in handling any modification or enforcement issues.
Many couples are able to make short-term adjustments without getting the courts involved, however if your situation changes and you need a long-term adjustment to your parenting plan, timesharing agreement, or child support, a qualified Florida Fathers Rights Attorney, such as Orlando Family Law Firm Grigaltchik & Galustov, can provide the assistance you need.
Company Name: Orlando Family Law
Contact Person: Family Law Attorney David Grigaltchik, Esq.
Country: United States