What are my baby’s father’s rights regarding visitation?

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What are my baby’s father’s rights regarding visitation?

I just had a baby with a man who I’m not living with nor married to. He keeps harassing me saying that I have to let him have the baby at his house overnight alone. I don’t feel comfortable letting him have the baby without me around because I don’t trust him. He wasn’t there for any of the pregnancy. He has had problems with drugs and alcohol in the past and has been in rehab for it. He also just got charged with a felony. Do I have to give in and let him take my child? Can he take the child away from me?

Asked on January 13, 2012 under Family Law, New York

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

First, congratulations on the birth of your child.  If you were not married to the man who is the Father of your child then you are presumed to the legal guardian of your child.  Now, he can indeed try and assert his parental rights and take you to court for custody and visitation.  Maybe you should beat him to the punch and consult with ana ttorney about the situation.  You have some very valid concerns here and you need to protect the child.  Good luck.


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