Unmarried Parent Custody Rights in Northern Virginia
Protecting the Rights of Unmarried Parents
Parental rights are not limited to mothers and fathers who were married. While paternity may first need to be established, mothers have the right to expect financial support from fathers and fathers have the right to spend time with their children. At Hale Ball in northern Virginia, we understand the laws that apply in these cases. Our lawyers have decades of experience protecting the rights of unwed mothers and fathers.
Child Custody and Visitation for Unwed Parents
Whether parents are getting divorced or they were never married in the first place, the expectation of the court is the same: the best interest of the child takes precedent. Typically, it is considered to be in the best interest of the child to have both parents play an active role in the child’s upbringing. That means child custody and visitation plans should be developed that allow the unwed father to spend time with his child.
The issues considered are the same in all child custody and visitation cases: Which parent has been the primary caregiver up to this point? What arrangement will have the best chance of preserving the child’s relationship with both parents? While cases involving unwed parents may typically involve the mother serving as the primary caregiver, this is not always the case. The stereotype of the unwed father who is distant and uninvolved should never guide these arrangements. We overcome stereotypes as necessary to get meaningful results.
Child Support for Unwed Parents
When an unwed father seeks child custody and visitation arrangements, it is important that he understands that he may also have to fulfill child support obligations. Likewise, an unwed mother who seeks child support payments must be aware that, once paternity is established, the father has the right to seek visitation and be part of the child’s life.
If you have a question, we encourage you to schedule a confidential consultation with one of our Northern Virginia lawyers. To make an appointment call us at the above telephone number 1-703-591-4900 or use the contact form below.
Since 1980 the AV-rated law firm of Hale Ball has served the legal needs of individuals and businesses. Our team of attorneys include lawyers named to Super Lawyer and Rising Star lists, as well as attorneys with advanced legal degrees, specialty certifications and lawyers who teach their areas of practice to other lawyers.
Use the contact form on this page to schedule a consultation, or call 703-591-4900.
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10511 Judicial Dr
Fairfax, VA 22030