Proving They Are Mine
Unmarried fathers must prove paternity to have parental rights; otherwise only the mother has those rights.
Take the next step to prove fatherhood.
Changing Current Agreement
Sometimes an already divorced parent will see a need to change their existing parental agreement.
Find out how to take that step.
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Enforce Your Rights as a Parent in Georgia
Establish and Enforce Your Georgia Parental Rights
Parental rights are established in a number of different ways, some of which are easy and some of which require legal action. Mothers, regardless of their marital status, have inherent rights to their children. Since mothers give birth, there can be no dispute about their parentage and their parental rights. In the case of a married mother, both husband and wife have equal rights to their children, so long as they remain married. Once a married couple chooses to separate or divorce, however, each parent’s rights may very well change. The court will intervene at the request of one party or the other,and issue custody and visitation orders that specifically outline each parent’s rights to their children. These orders can range from giving both parents equal rights to a child to one parent being granted sole custody of the child and the other parent being granted only limited access and rights to the child.
When parents are unmarried, however, the situation is more complex. Upon a child’s birth to unmarried parents, only the mother of the child has any rights to the child. The father, even if both parties know that he is the biological father, has no rights to the child at all. Paternity or legitimization can occur through a court proceeding, through the parties undergoing DNA testing, through the parties admitting paternity, or by the parties signing an acknowledgment. Once paternity or legitimization occurs, rights are established for both the father and mother, just as if the child had been born to a married couple.
Enforcing Your Parental Rights
After parental rights are established, disputes still can arise concerning one parent’s rights. For example, a mother may be concerned that visitation between the child and father would pose a danger to the child due to the father’s substance abuse. A mother and father may be unable to cooperate or work together sufficiently to carry out the terms of a joint legal custody order when they disagree on the educational choices for the child. In these cases, one parent may find it necessary to turn to the court for assistance, either to enforce his or her parental rights, or to resolve a dispute concerning parental rights that the parents cannot resolve on their own. In this situation, legal assistance from a knowledgeable Atlanta parental rights attorney is invaluable.
Shaw Law Firm PC is dedicated to helping parents establish and enforce their parental rights across a wide variety of situations. We have the expertise and knowledge to effectively and successfully represent parents in these types of disputes. Whether you are a mother or a father, you need advice and guidance that only a qualified Georgia family law attorney can offer. Contact Shaw Law Firm PC for all the information that you need about the legal situation that you are facing.