Q: separating unmarried couple, can mother/father move out with a 3 year old child?
unmarried, been together for about 5 years, child is 3 years old.
A: Yes. There are several factors that may affect legal rights and responsibilities. First, whether natural father signed an acknowledgment of paternity at the child's birth. If so, that is legal paternity. If not, parents can only bring a private action to legally establish parentage within the child's first 4 years of life. If the parents are not residing together, the issues of decision making, parenting time, and financial support are best handled through the courts, even if the parties are friendly and can agree. That way, if something changes in the future, each parent has enforceable rights and responsibilities. Each parent should at least consult with an attorney confidentially about their specific facts in order to determine how best to proceed. Best wishes as the family dynamics change and you navigate this process.
A: If both parents are on the birth certificate, then they both have parental rights to the child. If the parents have an unresolved dispute about where the child should live and who with, then it is likely time to file a custody action to get a court order to determine these things.
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