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Never married father is yanked around by mother on time with child; he wants court orders now

Your Question:
I have a 7 year girl who lives with her mother and for the past 7 years i havent really kept consistant employment but whenever her mom asks for money or whatever I try my best to get it to her. On the other I keep my daughter every weekend ,every school break and all summer except on the weekeends. My ex , when she in her mood likes to play the keep away game with my daughter if im not giving her money for whatever is she ask for she says i cant see her unless i come get her and bring her back even though we have an agreement to meet half way.(I live in Flint,MI and she lives in Southfield MI)So we're about an hour away from each other.Anyway i want to just cut out all this stuff and get legal joint custody and pay her child support and recieve support when i have her what do I do?

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My Answer:

You'll need to file a paternity action in the county where the child lives more than 50% of the time.

You'd lay out evidence of what you explained above, ask for a parenting schedule that is in the best interest of the child (e.g., perhaps the exact same thing you've been doing), and ask the court to assign child support per state guideline.

The outcome will be court orders for all of that, so both of you have to follow it.

It's not likely that the court will make each parent pay the other parent child support, depending upon time of year.

The court will plug all relevant factors into the state guideline formula and come up with a number that represents who should pay who what money every month.

In some states, overall custodial time and each parent's income (or full-time potential income) all go into the formula.

I don't know about your state.

But if your state does include custodial timeshare into the equation, you'll argue that the child is in your care perhaps 40% of the time. The resulting number will reflect that.

If you have no clue how to proceed, you need to consult an experienced family law attorney in the county where the child resides most of the time.

The danger of doing this yourself and screwing up is that there is NO do-over. Once it's done, it's very difficult to modify it.


This website gives common sense advice that is not intended to act as legal guidance nor psychological guidance. The author is neither an attorney nor licensed psychologist. For specific legal guidance or specific psychological guidance, consult with a licensed professional.

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