The most significant issue to be worked out for separating unmarried parents is generally child custody and parenting time. It is important to legally establish child custody and a parenting plan even if you are on good terms with the other parent. A formal child custody determination and parenting plan will protect the interests of you and your child and will ensure that you have an agreement you can enforce in a court of law. Even parents on good terms now should have a legally sound child custody and visitation plan. Your relationship could change significantly down the road and this could spell serious trouble for you to maintain a healthy relationship with your child.
We can help with your child custody and parenting time issues. Call the Law Offices of Paul F. Sherman at (503) 223-8441 or Contact Us for a free consultation.
It is essential for unmarried parents, especially fathers to understand the law that applies to unmarried parents.
UNMARRIED FATHERS MUST ESTABLISH PATERNITY TO HAVE PARENTAL RIGHTS
Many fathers are unaware that paternity must be established legally in order to obtain parental rights in the State of Oregon. Fathers are not automatically granted parental rights unless they are married to the mother at the time the child is born. There is a presumption in the State of Oregon that a child born to a married couple is their own. Thus, the law assumes the husband is the father of the child and his parental rights are established at the time of birth. An unmarried father must sign the birth certificate or similar acknowledgement of paternity form or take a paternity test to establish his parental rights. Once paternity is established, the father will have the right to pursue child custody and visitation.
MOTHERS MUST ESTABLISH PATERNITY TO RECEIVE CHILD SUPPORT.
Establishing paternity is also important for mothers who wish to receive child support from the child’s father. Paternity may be established administratively with the state through a child support order or in a court action to obtain custody of the minor child. Once paternity is established, both parents are legally responsible for the financial welfare of the child.
In Oregon, mothers and fathers have equal rights to obtain child custody and visitation. The courts will determine child custody based on a number of statutory factors, including a preference for the primary care provider for the child, if the caregiver is deemed fit by the court and what is in the child’s best interests and welfare.
CONTACT PAUL F. SHERMAN FOR EXPERT ADVICE ON YOUR CHILD CUSTODY OR PARENTING TIME CASE.
We know you have questions and we have answers. If you would like to know more about child custody or establishing a parenting plan for your child, call the Law Offices of Paul F. Sherman at (503) 223-8441 or Contact Us for a free child custody and parenting time consultation.