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Can my ex girlfriend move out of state?

Toledo, OH |

I have a 2 year daughter that i pay child support on and the mother denies my rights to see her. But now she is planning on moving out of state. She is trying to harass me and get "dirt" on me by using other people and I have done nothing wrong. I am not on the birth certificate but a paternity test proved she is mine. What kind of grounds do i have to stand on with this?

Attorney Answers 2


  1. Assuming that you are paying child support, but there is no court order regarding custody and visitation currently in place, then it is possible for your ex-girlfriend to move over your objection. Payment of child support alone does not give a parent any custodial or visitation rights. Under Ohio law, where a child is born to unmarried parents, the mother is the sole custodial parent by default. However, the father has the right to petition a court, typically the local county juvenile court, for custodial and visitation rights.

    However, if there is an order currently in place that provides you with custodial and/or visitation rights, typically, there is a process that you can object to the move through the court. Most court orders require that parents provide notice of relocation prior to moving. Once the notice has been provided, you can object to the move through the court. If no notice is provided, you may have the right to file a motion to show cause (aka motion for contempt) for violation of the order.

    In any case, I highly recommend that you consult with an attorney as soon as possible to review your situation and potential options.

    Please feel free to contact our office, which is located in Perrysburg, Ohio, just south of Toledo, at (419) 931-0065.


  2. Without a court issuing an order granting you parental rights to the child, the only thing that the paternity test has given you is the responsibility to pay support. In Ohio an unwed mother is by law the primary residential parent of the child until a court says otherwise. If you wish to prevent her from moving out of state, you need to contact an Ohio family law attorney immediate and get your paternity acknowledged by a court and an appropriate custody order established. Best wishes.

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