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Burlingame Family Law Blog

What Are the Parental Rights of Unmarried Parents?

Unmarried parents can sometimes have legal complications when they decide to separate. Unlike their married counterparts, unwed fathers, for example, are not automatically presumed to be the biological parents of their children, even if they are listed on the birth certificate. This lack of legal connection can prevent a mother from receiving child support from the father and a father from getting custody or visitation rights.

Considering divorce? You have some choices.

Do I have to go to court?

In my 30 years of being a divorce lawyer, no one has ever come to my office for a consultation and asked: "When can I go to court?" In fact, usually, clients ask "Do I have to go to court?" The answer to that question is no, it is possible to get a divorce and never have to step through the courthouse door. There are processes available that allow a couple to avoid going to court: Mediation; Collaborative Practice; and Negotiated Settlement.

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