Not all unwed dads are the deadbeat, disengaged, unhelpful parents that the media often makes them out to be. In Missouri and elsewhere, there are many who are willing to work hard to fully financially support and otherwise raise their children. The problem is that many unmarried fathers run into serious child custody obstacles right at the starting gate.
Such is the situation for a single father in another state. He loves his 2-year-old daughter. Even at the young age of 24, he has always played an active role in her upbringing. He is not married to the toddler's mother, however, and that woman surrendered her parental rights some time ago.
That's when all the trouble started. The state's Department of Child and Family Services took the baby from her mother. Before then, the child's dad had already been proactive in his quest to establish paternity. When the mother surrendered her parental rights, the child's father was suddenly and unexpectedly denied access to his daughter. Sadly, more than a year went by without the young man seeing his child.
He retained assistance from an attorney who said everyone in Utah (where the case was ongoing) should be shocked and dismayed that the court can obstruct a parent/child relationship so easily. The attorney also stated that there was absolutely no proof the father was unfit in any way to raise his daughter, and the state intentionally created roadblocks to deny his access to her. An appellate court since ruled that the man's paternity has indeed been declared. Missouri fathers facing similar child custody issues can seek assistance from experienced family law attorneys in the area.
Source: ksl.com, "Father in complex court fight is one step closer to raising his daughter", McKenzie Romero, April 7, 2017