The birth of a child is one of life’s greatest joys, but can also
be a time of stress for many people. If the parents are unmarried, in
the middle of a heated family law matter, or the mother simply does not
want the father around; complicated legal issues can arise. It may seem
common sense that a father is allowed to be present at his own child’s
birth, but the issue is not that straightforward.
In New Jersey, there is
legal precedent for the mother to disallow the birth father to be in the actual birthing
room when the baby arrives. While there are more than just these two persons
allowed to be present, the law gives the mom the right to deny the father
access but to permit others such as her mother or father be in the room.
The case law on this topic seems contrary to fair play, and there are
groups that advocate for father’s rights that claim this rule is
discriminatory. If this is in fact discrimination, why is a rule like
this one even on the books?
To understand why this law exists, one need only look at the rationale
behind the ruling. The Court agreed that a father’s involvement
in his child’s life is vital, but that until the child is actually
born the main focus is on the health and welfare of the mother. So, in
cases where the parties are at odds, it is possible for a birth mom to
keep a birth dad out of the delivery room. The game changes though once
the baby takes his or her first breath. After the birth, the focus shifts
to the child and what is in the best interests of the newborn baby. If
you have questions about child custody, who can be present at birth, what
names are put on a birth certificate, and what rights and obligations
all of these things confer upon a parent; call our office. We can help
you to sort out your child custody and related issues, and will work for
results that meet your needs while protecting the rights of your children.
For more information about child custody, visitation, support, and other
issues related to children call an experienced family law attorney for
answers to your questions. We can be reached online at
http://www.divorcelawyers1.com. Call today to schedule an appointment.