Do I have custody of my child if the father wrote it down but was never notarized? 22 Answers as of July 05, 2013

My boyfriend and I just moved in together and he was in the army. He served a few tours in Iraq and now is in rehab for melt downs. He is having the full custody of our child, but before he left he wrote on a sheet of paper that he gives all custodial rights to me, but we didn't have it notarized. Am I now the custodial parent?

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The Law Office of Cathy R. Cook
The Law Office of Cathy R. Cook | Cathy R. Cook
In Ohio, you are the custodial parent as you are unmarried. That will not change, unless the father files in court and is awarded custody or shared parenting.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 9/27/2012
Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock
Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock | Arlene D. Kock
You need to file and serve a paternity action with a motion to establish custody, visitation and support.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/26/2012
Attorney at Law | Michael P. Vollandt
File a petition for custody in the family law court and set a Request for Order asking for custody and use the note as your evidence.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/26/2012
Lombardi Law LLC
Lombardi Law LLC | SUZANNE LOMBARDI
In Alaska in order for you to be the custodial parent there would have to be a court order that cancels out the original custody arrangement if that was done through the courts.Even if the custody was not through the courts I would recommend that you file for custody and have a court hearing.Then you could explain your situation to a judge and have him or her make the custody order.
Answer Applies to: Alaska
Replied: 9/26/2012
Hamblin Law Office | Sally Hamblin
It depends if you had court papers stating who has custody.Since you never married, he does have rights, but not custodial unless the court or DHS states otherwise.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 9/26/2012
    Law Offices of Pamela R. Lawson | Pamela R. Lawson, Esq.
    You said that he "is having full custody of our child" - His argument with respect to the writing before he left is that he was being deployed to a dangerous part of the world and he wrote that to give you "custody" during his absence.Here is what you should do.file a Petition to Resolve Child/Parent Issues; if his condition re "melt downs" is a danger to the child and a doctor will agree to so state, then you can petition for full or primary custody.If his condition is not a danger to the child, what will probably happen is you and the child's father will be granted joint physical custody and a schedule will either be worked out between you, or a mediator or a judge will decide. Are you receiving child support?
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 9/26/2012
    Ezim Law Firm | Dean Esposito
    No.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 5/22/2013
    Grace Law Offices of John F Geraghty Jr.
    Grace Law Offices of John F Geraghty Jr. | John F. Geraghty, Jr.
    if that is no longer his intention then it wll no longer be valid.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 9/26/2012
    Burnett Evans Banks
    Burnett Evans Banks | Paul Evans
    If your child was born outside of wedlock, then a Court must make a declaration or establishment of paternity before your boyfriend can have any legal rights to the child. If paternity has been established through the court system, and your boyfriend has been awarded custody of your child, then it will have to be modified by the Court to have any legal effect. If paternity has not been established through the court system, then your boyfriend never had any type of legally-enforceable custody of the child.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 9/26/2012
    Steven Alpers | Steven Alpers
    You don't have custody unless there is a court order, neither does he.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/26/2012
    Dennis P. Mikko Attorney at Law | Dennis P. Mikko
    As a parent, you are a custodial parent. The child's father also has custodial rights. Unless there is a court order, both of you would have custodial rights to the child. A parent cannot simply write a note giving up his/her custodial rights.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/24/2012
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    The note will be evidence of his agreement, but there will probably be some question if the agreement was due to an for the time he was overseas, of if he had contractual capacity if in was made following his return and during his "meltdowns". I think you should see an attorney with details.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/24/2012
    John Russo | John Russo
    No. Only a court and confer that, also that piece of paper you have even if it was notarized is worthless since by your own admission he is not in a good mental state, so what he signed could be challenged on that bases alone.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 9/24/2012
    WARM SPRINGS LAW GROUP | Elliott D. Yug
    In Nevada if the parents were never married, the mother has primary physical custody unless and until a court orders different.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 7/5/2013
    John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law
    John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law | John Kirchner
    Your posting doesn't provide any information about how the father has what you call "full custody". Unless there is a court order saying what each parent's rights and responsibilities are, the father technically has no legal "custody" rights to give you and you still have the basic legal rights of a mother. What he wrote on piece of paper is virtually useless, regardless of whether it was notarized, except to show what he was thinking at the time he wrote it; it isn't binding on a court and doesn't create any legal rights. But, it sounds like you allowed your boyfriend to leave with the child, which means that you have created a totally confusing situation. You need to consult a lawyer to discuss the options and procedures to get a court involved to enter an appropriate parenting plan that defines each parent's rights and responsibilities.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 9/24/2012
    Law Offices of Maxwell Charles Livingston
    Law Offices of Maxwell Charles Livingston | Maxwell C Livingston
    Is it signed? If so, you could argue that, yes.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 6/27/2013
    Law Office Of Jody A. Miller
    Law Office Of Jody A. Miller | Jody A. Miller
    Custody can only be transferred by court order, not notarized statement.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 6/27/2013
    Beaulier Law Office
    Beaulier Law Office | Maury Beaulier
    If a child is born and the parents are not married, the mother is by default the custodial parent. Nothing changes that unless there is a court order entered as part of a paternity or custody case which specifies custody an parenting time. Agreements that are not memorialized as a court order are unenforceable but may be used in court as evidence of the intentions of the parties.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 9/24/2012
    Victor Varga | Victor Varga
    No, only the court can award you custody, but that is great evidence to use in court. You need to file for custody.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 9/24/2012
    Law Offices of Helene Ellenbogen, P.S.H | Helene Ellenbogen
    To transfer that custody, you would need to go to court to have the custody shared or transferred to you. Notarization has nothing to do with it. If the court removed custody from you, the father can not give it to you.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 9/24/2012
    David A. Browde, P.C.
    David A. Browde, P.C. | David Browde
    No.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/22/2013
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