As a step-parent, you do not have the authority to make legal decisions for your stepchild unless you have pursued legal actions to … These rights may affect situations related to child custody/support, visitation, paternity or domestic violence. Rights to a child remain with both natural parents after a separation or divorce and are only transferred to a step-parent following legal procedures and in extreme circumstances. State laws prohibit parents from voluntarily relinquishing their parental rights to avoid paying child support. The Court stressed, "the parent-child relationship is an important interest that undeniably warrants deference and, absent a … In re: J.S. Background. When a child is born to an unmarried mother, the mother is automatically granted sole custodianship. Many states require parental involvement in a minor’s decision to terminate a pregnancy. | Last updated May 19, 2020. A mother automatically has parental responsibility for her child from birth. by attorney Wendy J. Norman. It used to be that courts automatically deferred custody to mothers following a divorce. In the parent-child relationship, parents have some basic rights and responsibilities. In fact, mothers in many ways have more rights than fathers—at least initially. A single mother's rights regarding such important issues as custody, child support or visitation can vary from state to state. Loss of Tax Benefits. Depending on the mother's financial situation, the loss of … The father has no legal right to see their child without a court order. When it comes to basic parental rights, the law strives to be gender-neutral. Mothers have substantial rights to child custody, regardless of whether they are married to the father or not. This type of situation can prevent the father from being awarded visitation … A parent's right to care and companionship of his or her children are so fundamental, as to be guaranteed protection under the First, Ninth, and Fourteenth Amendments of the United States Constitution. A mother may become a single parent through divorce, widowhood or an estrangement from the father of her child. Legally, there is no presumption of paternity; this means that unwed fathers are not, by default, assumed to be biologically related to their children. Mothers' rights . States Parties undertake to ensure the child such protection and care as is necessary for his or her well-being, taking into account the rights and duties of his or her parents, legal guardians, or other individuals legally responsible for him or her, and, to this end, shall take all appropriate legislative and administrative measures. Minors’ Rights as Parents. Lisa D. Stern has counseled married, unmarried and divorced mothers in metro Detroit and across Michigan for 20-plus years. and C., 324 A 2d 90; supra 129 NJ Super, at 489. If you are a Michigan mother who feels your rights have been violated, you have a friend and advocate in attorney Lisa Stern. A mother has certain legal rights pertaining to her children. While a healthy mother embraces her child with unconditional love and acceptance to provide confidence and a safe space to discover and grow into … The bond between mother and child is special. A mother's child support obligations only terminate if she voluntarily relinquishes her parental rights or if the court terminates her parental rights. When a mother gives up custody of her child, she loses important tax benefits. By FindLaw Staff | Reviewed by Kellie Pantekoek, Esq. 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