Child holding teddy bearThis is the second post in my series on the rights of unmarried fathers in Peoria, Illinois. My last article provided an overview of topics I will be discussing and stressed the need to speak with an attorney if you are in a dispute with the mother. It is important to understand that the longer you allow the current situation to continue then the more likely the Court is to view it as acceptable. This, in turn, may lead to your receiving a reduced amount of visitation. In this article I will be discussing how an unmarried father can protect his rights. Call my office today to speak with a lawyer.

Peoria fathers must establish paternity in order to receive visitation and decision making authority

Illinois is like other states in that a dad will not have rights or obligations, regarding his children, until paternity has been established. This means that if you are not on the child’s birth certificate, and have not signed an acknowledgement of paternity, you will find yourself unable to demand visitation, without input as to the child’s upbringing, and you will not be obligated to support the child. Once paternity has been established then the dad will enjoy his rights and will often be required to pay back support if he has not previously helped to support the child.

My next post will provide an in-depth discussion of the process for establishing paternity. For now you should understand that while it may take some time to obtain a final custody order, the Court can determine paternity and issue a “temporary” visitation solution relatively quickly. This will allow you to enjoy time with your child while the case proceeds. If you have questions about this process then contact my office today to speak with a Peoria fathers’ rights attorney. I service the cities of Bloomington, Eureka, Galesburg, Morton, Normal, Pekin, Springfield, and Washington. I serve the counties of Fulton, Knox, LaSalle, Marshall, Mason, McLean, Putnam, Rock Island, Schuyler, Stark, Tazewell, and Woodford.

It is best for Peoria fathers to establish a child custody order even if they are on good terms with the mother

It is common for unmarried Peoria parents to not establish a child custody order. It may be that the parents are still together as a couple or that they have worked together in an amicable fashion since their separation. Separated parents getting along long term is often the exception, however, and not the rule. Even if you are a father who is on good terms with his child’s mother the fact remains that it is best to have a custody order in place. This will allow you to have protections in place should you ever go your separate ways.