child welfare

1 Answers. Asked on Aug 26th, 2013 on Child Custody - Florida
More details to this question:
My daughter is 10 years old now and her mom and I never got married we signed no paperwork so nothing is legal I have paid her child support since day one heres my problem i have never been allowed to take her alone ever...not overnight not even to the park..i have no arrests and no reason to not let me spend time with her...her mother just says NO..just this weekend I asked to take her to the park and my daighters answer was " don'y tell MOM she will not let you do that. I know now that it is never going to change we need to file some legal paperwork to end this ...can we just go thru a lawyer or do we have to go to court
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Answered on Aug 26th, 2013 at 11:45 AM

It sounds like you have a child support order as a result of a DOR (child support enforcement) type of action. Unfortunately those court orders do not address visitation or custody.  If you want to have visitation and parental rights, you must file a "petition to establish paternity, visitation, and parental responsibility".   The mom must be served by a process server and the matter must be decided by a judge.  Any issues dealing with children must be court ordered and not based upon agreements made between the parties outside of court. The mom is jerking you around now because she can.  You will need a court order to see your daughter, and the process is there for you to participate in.  If you cannot afford a lawyer, there are do it yourself forms available at most court houses and online. Further there are low cost services at most court houses called "self help legal centers" where a lawyer will assist you in completing the do it yourself forms for a very low fee.

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Child Custody
Your children are precious, and issues of child custody shouldn't be treated casually. Even the most amicable splits and custody agreements should be negotiated with the assistance of child custody attorneys and approved by the courts. Once a judge has approved the agreement, changes in custody or visitation, as well as enforcement of child custody agreements, should be handled with the assistance of your lawyer. Child custody law firms can also work with grandparents and other parties other than parents who are seeking custody of a child.
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