Q: I was told Arkansas has a law called “year and a day” when it comes to child custody.
I was wondering what that is exactly and what can set that into motion for his father to sign his rights over .
A: This question is a little confusing, but I think you're referring to the definition of abandonment in the family law section of the Arkansas Code (Title 9). The law is that if a parent significantly fails without good reason to communicate with a child or pay support for the child for over a year, that person is deemed to have abandoned the child. That doesn't mean his rights are automatically terminated at "a year and a day."
For example, if a father doesn't see his kids or pay child support for over a year and the mother is remarried, the stepfather could petition for adoption and the biological father's consent wouldn't be needed for the adoption to go through. In that case, the adoption would sever the rights of the biological father, but it's not automatic.
If you are in a similar situation, it would be wise to consult with an attorney about your options.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.