How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Harris Your Own Question
Harris
Harris, Family Law Expert
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 2725
Experience:  Family Law - Specialist in Divorce, Financial Relief and Children Matters
90234221
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
Harris is online now

My daughters father didn't acknowledge her existence for the

Customer Question

My daughters father didn't acknowledge her existence for the first 2 years of her life. Then decided to get in touch. He isn't on the birth certificate as he didn't turn up to sign. He has been seeing her for 5 months on a mostly weekly basis at my good will. He has disappeared twice in that time and now for a third time. He said he couldn't be her dad any more. A week later he got in touch to say he would see her and a mental melt down caused him to dissappear. He has alcohol excess he told me about and severe depression. He lost his job with autistic children due to misconduct. I've given him a visiting schedule based on my daughters routine, but can I stop him seeing her as he isn't in a sound mind and I believe it's best for my daughter due to him already letting her down. My question is can I stop him as he has no PR and it's in her best interests?
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Harris replied 10 months ago.

Hi, thank you for your question. Firstly, parental responsibility would entitle him to be involved in her upbringing and major decision making, but does not impact contact rights. In relation to contact, the child has a right to a relationship with her father, and this can only be reasonably restricted if there are welfare or child protection concerns, and from the information you have provided there very may well be due to the alcohol issues and him not demonstrating consistent commitment to contact - therefore you would be within your rights to prevent contact if there remain concerns about his alcohol use and mental health issues which would impact any care he provides your daughter.

I hope this assists you. If you found this information helpful please provide a positive rating using the stars at the top of this page. I will not be credited for your question without a positive rating. Thank you

Expert:  Clare replied 9 months ago.

My name is ***** ***** I have been a solicitor for more than 30 years.

My colleague has given you sound advice about the relevance of Parental Responsibility however

the law says that a child is entitled to contact with both parents and the Courts will try and achieve this if possible.

Instead of simply stopping contact you should offer contact at a local Child contact centre on a fortnightly basis.

This will give independent evidence of any lack of commitment and any alcohol abuse.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I have offered him fortnightly access on mutal ground with my background supervision. I offered a contact centre but his mother refused. I am being constantly harressed by both of them. He had unlimited access to his daughter after not being there for 2 years. But in 5 months he has disappeared without contact. This is not fair on my daughter and is confusing for her. His home isn't safety proofed and his dog bit my daughters ear on one occasion. He is not on the birth certificate as he wouldn't come to sign.
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Sorry, he has disappeared without contact 3 times. I have based the new visiting around my daughters routine of lunch and sleep. As I feel routine is important to her. But his constant disappearing and returning without explaining only that his mental health problems were an issue, it's very disruptive to my daughter. She doesn't understand. I don't feel this disruption is fair.
Expert:  Harris replied 9 months ago.

Thank you for the further information. It is important and in the best interest for your daughter that there is a consistent and regular arrangement and due to the concerns you have raised, if he is not agreeable to proposals for supervision that you are making then you have reasonable grounds not to agree to him having contact until he is willing to agree to this.

I hope this assists you. If you found this information helpful please provide a positive rating using the stars at the top of this page. I will not be credited for your question without a positive rating. Thank you

Expert:  Harris replied 9 months ago.

Hi, this question remains open. If you found my information provided helpful please could you rate my response positively using the stars at the top of this page as I will not be credited for my response without a positive rating.

Related Family Law Questions