Many may feel that Connecticut law favors mothers over fathers. However, that is no longer true, as both parents have equal rights in family law matters, including in determinations of custody and child support.
If you need help asserting your rights, a dedicated Guilford mother’s rights lawyer stands ready to assist. A family attorney from our legal team can help you understand your legal rights and represent you in court.
When a child is born to married parents, the husband is deemed the legal father. However, an unmarried mother must take additional steps to establish her child’s paternal parent if she did not make sure to list the father on the child’s birth certificate. If the mother agrees on the father’s identity, she can sign a voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity, which must also be filled out and signed by the father, and file it with a local department of social services office or the Department of Public Health.
Conversely, a mother also has the right to refuse a father’s voluntary paternity acknowledgment. If she contests paternity, either she or the father can file a paternity petition in family court. In this case, a judge will typically order genetic testing to determine the child’s biological father. A skilled attorney familiar with asserting a Guilford mother’s rights can explain the paternity laws in Connecticut and guide her through the legal process.
A mother has the absolute right to seek both legal and physical custody of her children. She can request to share custody with the father, or if she believes she is the more capable caregiver, petition for sole custody.
When deciding a mother’s custody petition, a family court judge must assess what custodial arrangement would be in a child’s best interests. Connecticut General Statutes §46b-56(c) outlines the factors courts consider when determining best interests. Some of these include:
Family court judges are not required to give one factor more weight than another, but they must articulate the basis for their final decision. What a court cannot consider when deciding custody is a parent’s gender. If a Guilford mother feels she is unfairly prejudiced in a custody or visitation proceeding, she should seek assistance from a capable lawyer to protect her rights.
A mother can also request financial assistance from the child’s father. Her right to seek child support does not depend on whether she was married to the child’s father or not.
Under Connecticut’s child support guidelines, courts consider each parent’s income and the number of children they support to determine the support amount. Additionally, a judge can increase or reduce the support amount based on the child’s medical expenses, daycare costs, and any special educational needs.
It is essential to properly assess each parent’s total monthly income to determine support correctly. If a mother leaves her career to stay home and care for her children, a local attorney can help calculate child support based on her current earning capacity, not what she earned when she ended her full-time employment.
As a mother, you have the right to seek child custody and visitation, receive child support, and establish paternity. If you think your rights are being infringed upon, contact a seasoned Guilford mother’s rights lawyer as soon as possible. Our dedicated team has helped many individuals exercise their rights and will work diligently to protect your relationship with your child. Schedule your consultation as soon as possible.