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Biological parents have a right to seek legal or physical custody of their child or child visitation, regardless of whether they were married or not when the child was born. As a father, you are still a biological parent, and so you have as many parental rights to your child as their biological mother does. Contrary to what many people believe, fathers have the same rights as mothers regarding child custody in a divorce.

What If I Was Not Present at the Birth of My Child?

Even if you are an unmarried father, or you were absent at the birth of your child, you still have rights under Kentucky Law. Fathers who were not married when their child was born must legally establish paternity in order to gain access to father’s rights. Often, this simply means both parents signing and filing an acknowledgment of paternity with the court, either at the time of the child’s birth or afterward. In disputed paternity cases, a legal process including DNA testing will conclude with a court order stating whether the man in question is the child’s biological father.

Child Custody Factors

Child custody is based on several factors, including the best interest of the child. Often one parent may be better suited to parenthood than the other. In these cases, it will probably be necessary to have the court intervene and make a determination for the best custody arrangement and visitation schedule. In order to seek custody, you will need to prove your commitment to having a relationship with the child. You will need to provide evidence to satisfy the court regarding your involvement in the child’s life. The most common types of evidence offered in a child custody case include witnesses, journals, emails, text messages, voicemails, letters, photographs, videos, audio recordings, schedules, and records such as financial, medical, school, and police reports.

Evidence To Prove Your Involvement With Your Child May Include…

  • Photos of you with your child
  • School reports
  • Insurance or medical bills
  • birthday cards you sent
  • Cashed checks
  • Sports involvement
  • phone call log

What Are the Best Interests of the Child?

Although there is no standard definition of “best interests of the child,” the term generally refers to the deliberation that courts undertake when deciding what type of services, actions, and orders will best serve a child as well as who is best suited to take care of a child. “Best interests” determinations are generally made by considering a number of factors related to the child’s circumstances and the parent or caregiver’s circumstances and capacity to parent, with the child’s ultimate safety and well-being the paramount concern. Your ability to care for your child’s financial, emotional, and social needs will be considered by the court when determining a child custody arrangement. Failure to show commitment to being involved in the child’s life may compromise your ability to seek custody.

We are committed to helping families resolve legal challenges and get back to their lives. We offer the guidance and support that you will need when you are involved with the legal system.

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About Helmer Somers Law

Helmer Somers Law helps individuals and businesses navigate the complex system of rules that accompany all legal situations. We are licensed to practice in both Kentucky and Ohio and offers flexible, affordable payment terms for our services. We welcome the opportunity to earn your trust and become your lawyer for life! It’s a fact of life in the modern world. There comes a time for virtually every adult American when the services of a competent, dedicated lawyer are required. Circumstances such as divorce, bankruptcy, estate planning or an income tax audit demand that your rights be protected, and your long-term interests advocated for with diligence and perseverance. When you call Helmer & Somers Law, you can rest assured that they will be.

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