Q: What do you do if my boyfriend, who I have never married, keeps threatening to take my children?
He constantly threatens me with saying he will take the two children and claims to have money for a lawyer when I mentioned taking him to court.
A: After constantly threatening you, if you still want him to be your boyfriend, perhaps you should consider a formal custody and child support arrangement done in the court system. You might also consider professional counseling that will help you and your children learn how to cope in situations such as this.
A: Under Arkansas law, the mother of children born outside of marriage automatically has legal custody of them. In order to obtain custody, a father would have to (1) establish paternity, (2) show that he has financially supported the children and maintained a relationship with them, and (3) show that an award of custody to him would be in the children's best interest. Without a court order giving him custody or visitation, a father of a child born outside wedlock has no rights. If you are sued by your ex for custody, you should speak to an attorney. You must also be mindful of any deadlines for filing a response to the lawsuit.
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