When Michigan women are in labor with a child, they typically want the father in the delivery room to support them during the process. But, if they don't for some reason, does the man have the right to be there? A recent court case has decided that fathers do not have the right, even if they are married to the mother.
Many court rulings in Michigan are based on previous decisions. However, laws are always changing -- as are family situations. This means that courts must look to the best interests of the child and this could mean setting a precedent. A Michigan man who raised a young boy since birth was recently allowed by a court to retain his parental rights -- even though the man is not the boy's biological father.
A Michigan man who fathered a child with a married woman is contesting a law that allowed the woman to deny him his parental rights. The man is questioning the constitutionality of the statute, which grants mothers significant discretion in deciding whether biological fathers can claim paternity rights following the birth of a child conceived during an adulterous affair.
The new tests could have important legal implications and prove valuable for both men and women across Michigan. A Kalamazoo-based testing facility will become the first lab in West Michigan to allow patients to test a fetus's DNA to establish paternity before a child is born. The facility's co-founder explained that men often want to know whether they are the father of a child without having to wait until it is born. However, states could decide to use the tests to require prenatal paternity tests and force non-custodial fathers to pay child support before their children are actually born.
Although custody battles can put a significant strain on parent-child relationships, moms and dads still have a responsibility to maintain a connection with their children. Michigan divorce proceedings can be difficult on some fathers, who often are shut out of their children's lives because of animosity and resentment from their former spouse.
An old Michigan law stands in the way of a biological father's right to custody of his daughter, while the man who the state says has all the rights is in jail on drug charges. The man is now the inspiration behind a bill that will allow biological parents to petition for child custody in some circumstances.
Under the law, Michigan fathers have the same rights to co-parenting as mothers. Often, a father may feel as though these rights have been violated. In some cases, the laws that are upheld in a court are antiquated and no longer relevant to a more modern familial structure. Recently, the Michigan Senate approved four bills that would update an outdated law that may violate a father's rights.