Florida man fights for rights to a child born to a married mother

A Florida man recently went to court in his pursuit of parental rights over his biological child. At issue is the fact that the child's biological mother is denying the child's biological father rights to his child, because another man has been legally recognized by the state as the child's legal father. The court needs to determine whether it is in the best interests of the child for the child to have a relationship with his biological father.

The child's biological father had an on-again-off-again relationship with the child's mother during the time period in which she and her husband were undergoing a separation period, but were technically still married. The child's mother gave birth to a child fathered by the Florida man who was not her husband. However, the Florida man was unaware that he did not have rights to his biological child. The child's mother gave testimony that she never intended to end her marriage with her husband, and she objected to the Florida man's paternity action.

The Florida man wishes to play a role in his child's upbringing. He has stated that for the first 18 months of the child's life, he was able to form a relationship with the child. The child's mother gave testimony that the only reason she permitted the Florida man to have a relationship with the child was because she was unaware that when a child is born to a married husband and wife, the husband is legally presumed to be the child's father.

The child's mother argues that the Florida man cannot pursue a paternity test, because the only means for proving he is an exception to state law on this issue is if he can demonstrate he has a relationship with his child. The Florida man maintains that although he lacks a current relationship with his child, that is not due to his own choices. The judge in this case has requested the parties' attorneys provide their written closing arguments. Then the judge will determine whether it is appropriate to have the biological father undergo a DNA test.

This father may be facing an uphill battle in regaining a relationship with his child. It is a legally complex case. However, fathers in situations like this should not lose hope. With the right legal help, it may be possible to make a compelling argument that will result in an appropriate outcome.

Source: wptv.com, "Testimony wraps up in biological father's paternity rights petition," Michelle Quesada, Feb. 2, 2018

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