Pennsylvania courts will strive to serve the best interests of the child in every child custody matter. In the vast majority of cases, this means that courts will take action to ensure that children have the chance to spend ample time with both parents. Still, this does not mean that one or more parents will not try to fight such parenting arrangements.
Sometimes, a mother will fight to retain full custody of her children and prevent a Pennsylvania father from having any parental rights. A mother might prevail in these court proceedings in certain circumstances, but in most situations, a father can assert his parental rights in court to ensure he maintains his visitation rights, parenting time and the ability to make decisions on behalf of his child relating to education, religion, medical care and general upbringing.
In evaluating a child custody case, courts will look at several factors to ensure that a child’s best interests are being served. Those factors might include:
— The need for continuity and sustainability with regard to the child’s family, community and education
— Which parent has a higher likelihood of ensuring that the other parent will have ample contact with the child
— The parental duties carried out by both parents
— The availability of both parents to take care of the child
— How close the parents live to one another.
At Palange, Endres & Marks, PC, we know that many fathers are unaware of their rights as parents, and that many fathers are unaware that they can assert those rights in court. If you feel like your parental rights are in jeopardy and that the best interests of your child or children are being compromised, our firm is here to help — regardless of which side of the dispute you happen to be on.