Child Custody Rights in Ohio – The Unmarried Mother
Under Ohio law, when it comes to child custody rights, an unmarried mother who gives birth to a child is automatically the sole residential parent and legal custodian of the child until a court makes a formal Court Order stating something else. To read the full statute involving this click here. This means that the unmarried mother does not need to file anything with anyone to legally establish the fact that she has sole custody of the child. This also means that until a Court legally “recognizes” the unmarried father as the child’s father, the father has no legally enforceable rights regarding the child, including but not limited to Parenting Time (Visitation). However, without obtaining some type of child support Order, whether it comes from the Child Support Enforcement Agency, or from a Court, the unmarried mother will not be able to force the father to provide her any type of support whatsoever.
A birth certificate will usually be sufficient for most issues wherein proof of custody is required. The only major exception is if the child needs a passport. To review the issues related to an unmarried mother obtaining a passport for a minor child, click here.
Child Custody Rights: Mother’s Rights vs Father’s Rights
Under Ohio law, the Court is not permitted to favor one parent over the other because of gender. This basically means that when two parents come to Court to have there first custody determination, they both come to the Court on “equal legal footing” when it comes to all Child Custody Rights. This is a solid legal principle that has been codified in Ohio Revised Code Section 3109.042. When the Court is first presented with the issue of establishing child custody rights, the Court is required to apply the “best interest test” to the facts of the case. The Court must also determine if Shared Parenting is in the child’s “best interests”. To read the complete list of the best interest factors, and the Shared Parenting factors click here.
Whether you are an unmarried mother who wants to establish a formal visitation schedule for the father, or whether your an unmarried father who wants to establish your child custody rights, finding an attorney with the right attitude and experience to represent and guide you through this difficult process, may be the most important decision you make regarding your child. The Law Office of Anthony W. Greco is committed to providing each and every Client with professional, aggressive and practical representation, while being sensitive to the Client’s unique concerns and goals in dealing with child custody rights. With more than 23 years of experience, our firm is equipped to deal with all issues involved in Child Custody matters. From the most complex, emotionally charged Child Custody rights case, to the most basic situation where the parents agree to Shared Parenting, the Law Office of Anthony Greco is prepared to aggressively represent your concerns and interests from the first day of representation through trial.