We hope our readers had an absolutely fabulous Father’s Day. It is a day to celebrate the contributions that father make in our lives. However, it is an unfortunate reality that some fathers were not able to spend time with their children because of an unresolved custody dispute. It is especially painful when a parent cannot spend time with a child because the custodial parent has moved away.
These cases, which are commonly referred to as “move-away” cases, are becoming increasingly common as more people are apt to move to a different state to pursue employment, or to connect with family for support in raising a child. As such, many fathers, especially those who were never married to the mother of their child, are often left without many options.
Nevertheless, it does not have to be that way. Fathers have the right to be in their children’s lives, but they must follow a process in order to secure rights to parenting time and custody. It could be a long and arduous process, especially if the other parent is resistant, but it is ultimately worth it in the end. There are countless statistics detailing the benefits to a child when he or she has a father figure in their lives.
With that said, a conversation with an experienced family law attorney can get things started. This is important so that the process is understood as well as the factors a court will consider in determining custody and parenting time. This way, the proper expectations are set so that absent fathers will not be so forever.
Source: Parentingafterdivorce.com “Emerging issues in relocation cases,” Philip M. Stahl, 2013