If you are considering filing a paternity action and you are a father it probably means that you are a stand up guy and you want to have a relationship with your child. If this is the case then you need to consider the issue of child custody or parenting time before you file your petition to establish paternity. In many counties in Alabama you will not even be asked about how much parenting time you are seeking. I have seen too many paternity cases that have closed without even an award of visitation specifically ordered. If you file a paternity action and the case closes without an order on the issue of custody then it will be presumed that the mother is the primary custodian and you will suffer a strategic disadvantage if you later attempt to gain parenting time or custody. If you want a relationship with your child(ren) then you will have to ask for custody or parenting time yourself. There will be no one else at court to do it for you. You and your attorney must start your case off on the right foot and ask the court to protect your father-child relationship from the start.
Austin is an experienced litigation and constitutional law attorney.
The following language is required pursuant to Rule 7.2, Alabama Rules of Professional Conduct. No representation is made that the quality of legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers. This web site is designed for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.