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Question on Custody

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What is the name of your state? AR

My 19 year old daughter has a 4 month old. The father hasn't called since she was 3 weeks old or paid any support. Friday night, he called and wants to come see her. I don't have a problem with this, I want him to know his daughter. Our only concern is, what if he takes her? They were never married, he is listed on the birth certificate and did sign the paternity papers. Her caseworker through Human Services told her that in the case of an unmarried couple, the mother automatically has sole custody and that if he left with her, it would be considered kidnapping, even if he is the father.

They had a terrible break up and this is something he had threatened to do at one point. He is coming to my home to see her, I really don't think there will be any problem. I just wanted to know if ya'll knew if legally he could just up and leave with her.



Senior Member
depends on your state. . the worker may know she may not.. you should find your states custody guidelines, so you know for sure. I happen to live in a state where both parents do have equal rights to the child, but thier are states where as you were told the mother assumes custody if there is no order in place.

if the father is going to start having a relationship with the child, I think your daughter SHOULD go to court, and work out custody, legal visitation and child support, as soon as possible. that way even if they are getting along, someday if they are not, they will have a legal agreement to fall back on.


Thanks for your replies. I have contacted an attorney about this this morning and am waiting on a call back.

I found one site that said that in Arkansas, unless a judge signs a paternity order finding him to be the father and granting visitation, that he has no right to visitation and my daughter has no right to child support. In other words, for him to get visitation and her to get support, they have to pursue it. This may be wrong, I don't know. I will not deny him to come into my home to see his daughter (they live with me) but until I find out for sure, he will not leave my home with her. The whole reason for this question is because I will not allow them to use their baby as a weapon against each other. While he is here today, I am making my daughter leave the house. They are not mature enough to even be civil to one another. I'm just nervous, I guess.

If anyone knows anything about Arkansas custody guidelines, please let me know. Thanks.


pthalo said:
once he is on the bc and paternity papers are signed then he has as many rights as she does.. never listen to the system.. they are biased.. listen to the laws b/c they are on paper.. the two parents need to get into court and sign papers to establish custody/visitation and then child support.. so when mom claims full custody without a hearing or an agreement why is that not kidnapping..
Just wanted to report that I have talked to 2 lawyers. In Arkansas, in regards to unwed parents, mother has sole and complete custody until custody/visitation orders are put into place. Daddy signed paper at hospital acknowleding no custody/visitation rights and mother having custody (it was on the back of the birth certificate forms).

Thanks for all ya'll's help!

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