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Can my unborn child be added to the restraining order?2 Jan 2017

Pregnancy and the birth of a child can be joyous for all who are involved. The new life in the mother’s womb and coming into the world is a miraculous event. Sometimes there are issues that arise between the parents to create stress and anxiety. Fighting or arguing may ensue, and what happens to that child? Here are some tips on restraining orders and adding a child.

What is a restraining order?

When a person is harmed or threatened by another, they may obtain a restraining order against that person. A restraining order is a court order protecting a person and the public from an individual who has shown violence, harassment or sexual assault. This order also covers individuals who stalk another and bring fear into their lives.

In some states, there must be one of these situations to get a restraining order. In other states, you only need to show a potential for one of these to obtain the order. You can get a temporary emergency restraining order if there is an immediate need for one, but these have expiration dates. To get a permanent restraining order, you need to provide proof that the individual will do one of these things or has the potential to.

The father’s rights

The restraining order you have for yourself and your family doesn’t necessarily cover the unborn baby. The father first will need to get paternity testing to prove that he is in fact the father. This is called a Motion To Establish Paternity. Once he is proven the father, he then can proceed to file for custody if he so chooses. This doesn’t mean he will win custody, but he does have a right to pursue it.

Your rights

If you so choose, you have the right not to allow the father in the delivery room when you are giving birth. If he is proven the father through paternity testing, he still has a right to see the baby in the hospital, but no right to witness the birth if you don’t allow it. The reason for this is simple. Giving birth should be a joyous and calming occasion. If the father is there and you feel threatened, this could be harmful to you and the baby.

Restraining order protection

To cover the unborn baby under a restraining order, you would need to return to the court and file for another order for the baby. If your restraining order proves violence or some other form of harm, this shouldn’t be difficult to obtain. The court will want to provide what is best for the child. If a restraining order will protect that child, they are likely to adhere to it.

What you need to do

Documenting events goes a long way in court. You need to make sure to document everything the father has done or said since you became pregnant. Try and remember all you can because the more information you have, the more it will help your case. Continue documenting everything, and bring it to the court with you. Even after the restraining order is in place, if he attempts contact or makes threats, document those. Have a time and date for each event logged in. Pictures or medical records of any violent acts will also help with your case. If he has been violent to you, the court may feel he might be violent to the child.

Overall

After the birth of your child, the father may decide to establish paternity and pursue custody. This isn’t likely if you have the new restraining order protecting the baby. We can help you fill out the paperwork and obtain a new restraining order. Give us a call, and let us help protect you and your baby.

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