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Paternal Legitimation Lawyer in Marietta

Custody and Visitation Rights for Unwed Fathers

By law, fathers of children conceived out of wedlock are required to pay child support as part of each parent's legal responsibility to provide for the needs of their children. However, even when fathers have been ordered to make support payments, this does not automatically grant fathers any right to custody or visitation—only the mother has any automatic parental rights for children born out of wedlock. To obtain custody and visitation rights in these situations, fathers must take appropriate legal action.

Protecting Fathers' Rights and the Child's Best Interests

At Henrickson & Sereebutra, our Marietta divorce attorneys has a decade of collective experience helping clients resolve issues concerning paternal legitimation, including custody and visitation. Our firm is devoted to helping individuals find solutions to difficult family law issues. We understand how complicated a family situation may be, but we also know how important it is to protect the rights of parents and look after the best interests of children involved. When it comes to establishing fair parental rights and involvement in a child's life, let Henrickson & Sereebutra help you obtain the positive resolution you seek.

Look after your best interests with our divorce lawyer in Marietta. Contact our firm today!

Filing a Petition for Legitimation

To establish custody and visitation rights and begin playing an active role in the child's life, fathers must file a petition for legitimation. Usually, this petition must be filed in the county where the mother resides. If paternity has not already been established, the court may require the father to present evidence proving that they are the biological father.

Why Do I Need an Attorney to File a Petition?

There are a number of factors that influence the outcome of a legitimation petition. The request may be denied for any number of reasons—not only if you are unable to prove you are the father, but also if it is not shown that the legitimation and other rights would be in the best interests of the child. Many fathers file a legitimation petition without proper preparation or understandings of what the process will entail, which often results in a failed petition or undesirable custody and visitation rights.

Our divorce attorney in Marietta works closely with fathers to help them file a petition for legitimation correctly and prepare sufficient evidence that can demonstrate to a court why they should be involved in the child's life. When it comes to custody and visitation, courts seek to make decisions in the best interests of the child—when a parent's interests coincide with the child's interests, it is important to clearly demonstrate this to a court. 

Schedule a free case consultation with our firm and take steps to obtain the custody and visitation rights you deserve and have an active role in your child's life!

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