If my ex-wife cheated and had a child who I have raised as my own for the last 13 years but now she won’t let me see him, do I have any paternal rights?

UPDATED: Aug 12, 2012

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If my ex-wife cheated and had a child who I have raised as my own for the last 13 years but now she won’t let me see him, do I have any paternal rights?

I have raised the child for the last 13 years as my own since he was born even after she and I divorced. I have taken care of him finacially and have split visitation with him since the divorce alternating 1 week with me 1 week with his mom. A year ago just before I remarried his mother told him of and introduced him to his biological father and 6 months ago she stopped me from seeing him and communicating with me about him. Do I have any parental rigths and can I fight for visitation of my son?

Asked on August 12, 2012 under Family Law, Maryland


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If you have not adopted this child you technically do not have any legal parental rights over this child as his or her father. However, given the fact that you raised this child for the past thirteen (13) years, under statutes of some states in this country you might be able to have certain custodial or visitation rights which you have stated in the past.

Given the past visitation rights you had and if you want to renew such, I suggest that you consult with a family law attorney as to what your course of action should be concerning the matter that you have written about.

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