Q: What are the steps and requirements needed to terminate my son's father's parental rights in Massachusetts?
My son is 15 months old, and his father has made no effort to see him or even ask how he's doing since I left him when my son was less than 3 months old. I've reached out multiple times with opportunities for visits with no response from him. He has my facebook blocked and has a new number so the only way to attempt to reach him is via Instagram or mail. He recently got indicted for trafficking heroin by a grand jury. He's supposed to be sentenced in about 2 weeks. He has never given me support of any kind, he just continues to abuse drugs/alcohol and lay in bed.
A: If you were divorced did you have a reference to custody and visitation in the agreement or in the Judgment post trial? If this is an unmarried parents Judgment of paternity or custody and support, then the issue of what custody there is would be addressed in that agreement and Judgment. You would need to file a Modification Petition and seek an Emergency Order to have the Court enter orders terminating/suspending visitation, and ,if applicable, legal custody and if father is trying to see the child under the circumstances you allege the Court would want to be convinced that he is sober for a lengthy period of time after he serves sentence before granting visitation, including various corroboration of his sobriety and program participation.
You can file for custody and child support in Court in MA. See: https://www.mass.gov/guides/filing-for-child-custody-or-parenting-time-in-massachusetts
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