Some Pennsylvania fathers may struggle within the court system after divorce. From expensive support payments and civil protection orders to being left off the child's birth certificate, there are many common issues that fathers may face. However, there are ways to navigate the waters of being a single dad.
Many fathers struggle with child support obligations. Experts suggest that fathers who fall behind on child support should still try to pay something to show they are making a good faith effort. They may want to consider hiring a lawyer to help them request a modification in support. While courts expect biological parents to support their children, they also recognize that sometimes there are extenuating circumstances such as job loss. While a modification will not wipe away past child support debt, it may lower payments going forward.
Another issue for some fathers is having restrictions against seeing their children. A court may agree to a protection order if the father appears to be a danger to the children. Fathers may want to seek legal help in this case as well. In some instances, witnesses can be useful.
Unmarried fathers might face additional custody obstacles, particularly if there is a delay between the birth of the child and the father's efforts to claim custody rights. They may need to go through a legal process in which a judge will decide what arrangements are in the child's best interests.
In most cases, even if parents are on the same page about custody and visitation, it may be a good idea to have a legally binding agreement in place. Parents may create a schedule for custody and visitation, including vacations and holidays, that best suits them and their children. A lawyer can help draw up an agreement that works for everyone involved.