My baby is a year old and his father has not been involved other than giving us money each week and occasionally stopping by to visit. Paternity has not been established, and I prefer not to, even if that means foregoing court ordered child support. I have no family here in FL and want my son to be raised around family. His father's family has not had anything to do with him. I want to discuss it with his father but am afraid he is going to fly off the handle like before when I've mentioned it. I'm at a loss and not sure how to proceed as I really want to move home and be near family.
Yes you can, however Florida will remain the child's home state until he has been in Indiana for six months, and dad could file a paternity action in Florida within that time. But if paternity has not been established then you have the right to move. Depending on the amount of his involvement with the child he could try to make you return. You should discuss your options with an attorney in Florida before deciding.
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In the State of Florida a child born out of wedlock is the child of the mother solely until the father establishes paternity in family law court. As Attorney Morcroft stated, you will have to be in the other state long enough to establish residency which in most states it is 6 months. Up until that time the father can file a Petition for Paternity and request that you be required to return your son to the state of Florida. Florida has a relocation statute located at Florida Statute 61.13001. You should probably take a look at it. Good luck.
B. Elaine Jones,
As an unwed mother you have the authority to relocate without the Father's consent. Despite this, some courts will review the matter if he files the paternity action for the time sharing schedule. The Court has to decide what is in the child's best interest, which could include extended time in Florida. Normally, the best option is to reach an agreement on a long distance parenting plan prior to moving, but if this is not feasible because of the Father's temper, then you'll have to weigh the risk of leaving and being forced back, or having large chunks of time without your child because the court orders him to spend a large amount of time in Florida with the Father.
Vanessa Vasquez de Lara, Esq.
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