Child Custody

questions & answers

Question: What if I've been to prison and while I was there, my son's father took me to court and got sole legal custody, and since then has dumped my son off on his family (3 years) and has left the state? Do I have any right to do anything? He does not support our son in anyway.

Answer: The fact that you've been to prison, while unfortunate, does not automatically deprive you of parental rights. A potential solution would be to file a custody petition of your own, citing the fact that you have recently earned release and are prepared to assume the duties of a normal parent. The applicable laws are A.R.S. § 25-411 and Family Law Rule 91(A),(D)&(F).  You should read these very, very carefully, and seek advice from a private attorney or legal aid to walk you through the petition process. It involves a great deal of paperwork, and you want to make sure you get it right! You should also consider contacting Community Legal Services (CLS) to determine if they have a grant program expressly designed for inmates who are recently paroled and wish to re-establish a bond with their children. (I believe that they do.) The phone number there is 602-258-3434. Press the extension for "intake" inquiries.

QUESTIONS

  • What if I've been to prison and while I was there, my son's father took me to court and got sole legal custody, and since then has dumped my son off on his family (3 years) and has left the state? Do I have any right to do anything? He does not support our son in anyway.

STORIES

  • He told me that I could actually get all the money I needed by using my home as collateral. . .
  • He told me that I could actually get all the money I needed by using my home as collateral. . .
  • Age discrimination in the workplace. . .

LegalLEARN

YOUR FEEDBACK IS NEEDED

  • Welcome to our Newly Redesigned Website! Let us know how we are doing! Please take a couple of minutes to fill out our survey.

FIND LEGAL HELP

  • Please select your county of residence below.

    County:
     

OTHER LEGAL RESOURCES

  • State Bar of Arizona
    www.azbar.org
  • Maricopa County Bar
    www.maricopabar.org
    Referral number 602-257-4434
  • Pima County Bar
    www.pimacountybar.org
    Referral number 520-623-4625
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline
    800-799-7233
  • Bankruptcy Court Self Help Center
    866-553-0893
  • Certified Legal Document Preparer Program
    Link

ORGANIZATIONS