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Fathers' rights case brings hope to unwed fathers nationwide

Pennsylvania fathers seeking custody of their children may want to take note of a recent case. A father in another state used a law little known by many men who are fighting for their fathers' rights. Some states have a father registry, on which a biological father who is not married to his child's mother before or at the time of the birth of their child can register in order to assert his fathers' rights. In this case, the fortunate father had registered before his baby was born after his sister researched his options.

The man and his girlfriend decided not to marry once she found out she was pregnant because her mother did not approve of him. Even so, they both decided to share equally in the raising of their child. He said he communicated with her daily, but some of her actions concerned him, so he put his name on the registry his sister and her friend discovered. He was not told the day his daughter was born, and, just a few days later, a private investigator showed up at his house revealing his ex-girlfriend's plans to place the baby for adoption with a family across the country.

An attorney who heard about his battle wanted to help the man gain custody of his daughter. Had he not registered when he did, he might never have had a chance to be her custodial parent. After proving he wanted the baby and was financially able to care for her, the court allowed the child to live with him. Nine months later, he was given sole custody of the baby, and the rights of the mother were terminated. He has since set up a foundation, the goals of which are creating awareness among other men in similar positions and the creation of a national registry.

Men fighting for their fathers' rights can often run into problems while seeking custody of their children. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania does not have a similar registry; however, there are legal options for obtaining custody of a biological child. The laws can be complicated, but professionals who know state regulations are available to provide assistance.

Source: wrdw.com, "Aiken father battles for father's rights after nearly losing daughter", Lindsay Tuman, Sept. 24, 2015

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