My brothers ex girlfriend has kept their son away from him for almost a year. She refuses to let him see his son. He has tried calling, showing up to her house, etc. she changed her phone number and moved. He is a great dad and deserves to be in his sons life, he just got a stable job and is able to file for visitation rights now but he is nervous that he won't win. He is scared the court will look down on him since he hasn't seen his son in a year. What should he do? What are his chances of getting visitation rights? This is in Illinois.
1 Answer from Attorneys
He shouldn't have any trouble getting visitation rights. He's entitled to them unless the court has declared him unfit, something which is much harder than most people think. Depending on the age of the child, initial visitations may be supervised by someone but that should last very long and is not something which your brother should object to. The real question here is whether or not your brother has established his parentage by signing a voluntary acknowledgment of paternity. If not, he will have to do this prior to the court granting him visitation. He should also be prepared to pay child support which is generally 20% of his net after-tax income.