The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Child Welfare Information Gateway is an excellent online tool to get started when looking for information on adoption. The gateway features information on domestic and inter-country adoption. Its resources contain a wealth of information on adopting, especially from the U.S. Foster Care System.
Under specific circumstances, it may be possible for 16-year-old minors to move out of their parents' homes, according to the Legal Information Institute of Cornell University Law School. The process of legally moving out at such a young age is called emancipation, and it is only granted in certain cases.
In the United States, the length of time someone must pay child support is governed by the state, not the federal government. The length of child support obligations is dependent on the relevant laws of their particular state.
By law, child custody and visitation rights for fathers are identical to those of mothers in every state. While mothers and fathers are technically equal under the law, About.com notes that fathers' visitation rights can sometimes be harder to exercise and enforce.
According to law firm Ciyou & Dixon, PC, five things should be in a custody letter: complete contact information for anyone providing a character reference, photographs, a timeline of events, recorded conversations (texts or emails) and explanatory letters.
A stepfather is the husband of someone's mother by a later marriage. If a mother gets a divorce from the child's father or becomes a widow, she may marry another man who becomes her child's stepfather.
All Georgia parents are required to provide adequate support for their minor children, according to Fulton Superior Court. As of 2007, child support in Georgia is calculated using the income of both parents, taking into consideration previous child support orders, which parent is the custodial or non-custodial parent, the proportion of income earned by each parent, the number of children and special circumstances, such as medical needs, according to Nolo.
In general, an unmarried father who has established legal paternity can ask the courts to approve a part-time living arrangement and an equal say in child-rearing decisions. He may also have the right to visitations. In cases where the mother is deemed unfit, an unmarried father may be able to seek sole legal and physical custody.
According to Child Care Aware, individuals might be entitled to child care costs depending on a number of factors and circumstances. For the 2013 tax year, there are Child Tax Credits available for families with earned income less than $51,567.
The purpose of a child custody letter is to provide evidence to the court or mediator that the parent seeking custody is fit, according to LegalZoom. Fitness generally indicates that the party can act for the best interests of the child.
To write a child support agreement letter, determine the amount of support that legislation prescribes based on location and income. Contact the other parent or their lawyer to ensure that they are in agreement with these terms. Then, write a letter to a judge, the other parent's lawyer or the parent themselves stating the amount to be paid and when payments shall be made, as reported by Find Law.
Each state has its own laws regarding child support and paternity, but in general, a court has the discretion to order a man not named on the birth certificate to pay child support. Paternity of the father can be established after the birth. If a woman files a claim for child support through social services, the agency makes an attempt to establish paternity through DNA testing.
As the American Association of Retired Persons explains, grandparents do not have automatic visitation rights to see their grandchildren; however, some states allow grandparents to petition the court to grant visitation rights in specific situations. The criteria used by courts to grant visitation to grandparents varies by state but generally take into account the marital status of the parents and the prior relationship between the grandparent and grandchild.
Nolo explains that a parent is not required to pay child support until he is established as a legal parent, by a paternity test, court order or other legal means. An unmarried father who signs an acknowledgement of paternity pays child support, even without his name on the birth certificate.
Grandparents sometimes have visitation rights in the state of California, according to the California Judicial Branch. There are required circumstances that must be met for these rights to be awarded.
Grandparents have the right to petition for visitation rights if a grandchild was born out of wedlock, if one parent has deserted the child or if the parents of the grandchild have dissolved their marriage, according to chapter 752 of the Florida statutes. As of 2015, a grandparent's rights are typically limited in Florida.
In the state of Texas, there are no current grandparent's rights that automatically kick in, states TXAccess.org. Right to visitation, however, is possible with a court order in certain circumstances.
A guardianship letter is a directive written by a parent that specifies his wishes for the care and raising of his minor children if he dies unexpectedly, notes Pennyborn Planning. The letter contains the parent's reasons for choosing a specific guardian and the terms of care.
According to the Texas State Legislature, parental rights can be involuntarily terminated if the parent endangers, abandons or refuses to adequately care for the child. If the parent is convicted of a crime or incarcerated, parental rights can also be terminated. Parental rights can be voluntarily terminated if the child is not genetically the parent's or if the child is put up for adoption within 48 hours of birth.
One way a father may gain custody of his children living in another state is if the mother agrees to modify custody and the court approves the modification, states The 'Lectric Law Library. Only the state that first determined custody is allowed to make changes to the agreement.
In drafting a custody agreement, both parties involved should outline legal and physical custody, financial obligations, visitation schedules and transportation arrangements, according to About.com. Agreements that are not clear and concise may be altered by the court.