Adoption: Court finds father was unsupportive during pregnancy | Lane & Lane, LLC
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Adoption: Court finds father was unsupportive during pregnancy

Unmarried New Jersey parents may have to navigate a road filled with stumbling blocks. It is not uncommon for a biological father to claim parental rights of a child born to a girlfriend. In some cases, this is perfectly understandable, and it may not be challenged by the mother. However, if the relationship was ended, the child may be given up for adoption, leaving the father to fight for his rights.

In a case in which an unmarried father challenged the legitimacy of the adoption of his child, the 4th District Court of Appeals recently ruled in favor of the adoptive parents. According to court documents, the mother's pregnancy was confirmed the day after the couple ended their relationship. It was determined that the man was cyber-stalking his former girlfriend during the pregnancy by hacking into her mobile phone instead of providing support.

Some of the reported details showed that he failed to support the mother financially during the pregnancy, and did not attempt to save funds for the expenses and support of the baby in the future. Furthermore, he withdrew the money the couple saved up for child-related expenses and failed to replace it. He also made fake entries in his checkbook register to show payments to the mother that were never made.

The court ruled that he would have no parental rights because he failed to make the level of commitment that is required of unmarried fathers to assert constitutional rights to parentage. Unmarried parents in New Jersey may benefit from consultations with their respective family law attorneys to learn about their legal rights. Attorneys who are experienced in family law litigation can guide unmarried parents through issues related to adoption and parental rights. In some cases, alternative dispute resolution can resolve the issues and costly litigation may be avoided.

Source: metnews.com, "C.A. Says 'Creepy' Father Cannot Block Adoption", Oct. 8, 2015

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