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Father faces sporadic visits from child's mother; now wants sole custody

Your Question:
We've had my step son for 4 years. We had school and doctor's records to prove this. The mother (who lives in another state) continues to pop-up every now and again threatening to take him. So, we recently filed a summons for parental allocation. My husband has requested full custody.

The mother also, has a long criminal record. What are our chances?

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My Answer:

The criminal record is relevant only if it shows a pattern of crime that would make her an unstable parent. Certainly, one can't parent from a jail cell. So if she's done jail time repeatedly, it's relevant.

That said, if she has a few misdemeanor convictions (payable with a fine and no jail time) for something like check fraud, what's your argument that it's relevant to being a parent?

If there's nothing wrong with you or the husband, and if you can put together a convincing case with credible testimony and evidence, it would seem to me that your husband would stand a pretty good chance at retaining the primary caretaking time of the child.

The emphasis should be to maintain the status quo, because it's serving the child's best interest.

The term "parental allocation", by the way, is new terminology to decide who has custody. I guess it's a way to prevent a winner vs. loser ruling, though it still has the same outcome.

I strongly recommend that you buy your husband the book "Child Custody A to Z - Winning with Evidence", which I describe on my Recommended Books page. No other book available will do a better job at really helping your husband put together his case.


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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