Do I have to allow overnight visits if the biological father of my child does not have a job or a stable place? 9 Answers as of February 18, 2014

I have been separated from my child's father for over 3 years now. I have filed for child support but still nothing is done. The father has no proof of residency, has no current job, or a dependable way of transportation as well as telephone. He wants to see our child. We were never married. His name is not on the birth certificate either. I don't want to keep our child away but I also want what is best for our child. We did supervised visitations on and off for a year on my terms. Things were looking up and I let the father keep him overnight once a month for about 3 months. Now he doesn't have job again and no stable place but still wants overnight visits. What do I do?

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Law Offices of Lauren H. Kane | Lauren H. Kane
You should consult an attorney. However, if there is an order giving him overnights then you have to abide by it or you will be in contempt. Then you should file a petition to modify the Order. Otherwise you should file a custody petition.
Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
Replied: 2/18/2014
The Law Office of James P Peterson
The Law Office of James P Peterson | James P Peterson
Hire a lawyer and get orders.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 2/18/2014
Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock
Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock | Arlene D. Kock
It is understandable not to allow for overnight visits if he has an unidentified location where he resides or an unsafe environment where he stays. You must be careful about ensuring the child has an ongoing consistent relationship with father. Please meet with an experienced family law attorney to explore you options.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/14/2014
Law Office of Morgan L. Place (MP Law Office) | Morgan L. Place
What is the current custody/visitation order? Until you change it, that's what you're obligated to allow. If you think the circumstances have change enough to justify a change, you need to request that. In the meantime, you're obligated to comply with the current court order. So, if the order says over night visits, that's what you're bound to do. If it doesn't order those visits, then you're not obligated.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/14/2014
John Russo | John Russo
The job is irrelevant, the place to live is the issue if you can show to the court that he does not have his own residence that has accommodations suitable for the child then he will not have overnights until he does. But neither issue would or should stop regular weekly visits.
Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
Replied: 2/14/2014
    Law Offices of Helene Ellenbogen, P.S.H | Helene Ellenbogen
    What you should have done when the child was born. File a parentage action. This will get the father on the birth certificate, provide for a parenting plan in the child's best interest (which includes no overnights unless he has a stable place for the child to stay, and child support. Private agreements about children are not legal and obviously, from your experience, not stable or reasonable.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 2/14/2014
    Law Office of Annette M. Cox, PLLC
    Law Office of Annette M. Cox, PLLC | Annette M. Cox
    If you have not done so already, I would file a formal petition to establish decision-making and parenting time. With that, you can work out a schedule that you both either agree to or address the concerns you have about the father and overnight visits.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 2/14/2014
    Peters Law, PLLC
    Peters Law, PLLC | Mark T. Peters, Sr.
    You go to court and get a custody order defining when he may have overnights. At a minimum, he must have a place to stay. The language will have to be worked out, so I suggest you talk with an attorney to get this done properly.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 2/14/2014
    Petit & Dommershausen SC
    Petit & Dommershausen SC | Tajara Dommershausen
    If there is no court order adjudicating him dad and giving him placement, you have the sole discretion. If there is an order and you disregard it and he files a motion, you will have to defend your actions to the court.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 2/14/2014
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