Schwam-Wilcox & Associates, Attorneys and Counselors at Law
While You're Going Through Your Worst, We Are At Our Best
407-982-2714 | 888-337-5886
Se Habla Espanol
Evening appointments available for Clients
from 9:00pm to 11:00 pm

State court deciding visitation rights for rapist father

Generally when a parent is ordered to pay child support, he or she also has a custody or visitation arrangement to see the child occasionally. But what happens when the child involved was conceived during a rape? Child custody and visitation rights can become particularly complicated for a parent who needs child support but does not want the other parent to have visitation rights. An ongoing case in another state involving the visitation rights of a person who fathered a child through rape is an extreme example of this type of situation.

A now-24-year-old man was convicted of raping a 14-year-old middle school student when he was 17-years-old. The man pleaded guilty to the rape in 2011 and was sentenced to 16 years probation. A child was born from the incident.

Once the criminal matter was decided, the judge remanded the case to Family Court on the issue of child support. The court ordered the defendant to pay $110 a week in child support to the victim. The defendant has since filed a petition, arguing that if he is forced to pay child support, he should have the right to visitation.

In August, the lawyer for the victim filed a motion to reverse the judge's order in the criminal case that sent the support issue to Family Court, arguing that adjudicating the matter in Family Court decriminalizes the defendant's actions. The lawyer also argued that forcing the victim to send her child off with her rapist for visitation is outrageously unjust.

The victim's motion asks that the matter be sent back to Criminal Court and the defendant ordered to pay restitution instead of child support. The lawyer stated that in this way, the defendant would have no parental rights but would still pay to support the child.

Child custody and visitation issues can be incredibly stressful for a custodial parent who has no relationship with the other parent. A party facing this type of situation can benefit from legal counsel.

Source: ABC News, "Rapist Wants Visitation Rights With Child Conceived During Rape," Colleen Curry, Sept. 29, 2012

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information