Is it right or wrong to deny a father access to the child when he said he was not the father when you were pregnant??

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Tinker1987 - posted on 12/07/2011

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The father has the right to access the child,you cant hold a grudge to him because he was being a douche in the beggining,you have to put the baby's needs first now not yours. Have supervised visits,he pops over whileyour there until you build enough trust that he can do one on one visits.

Brianna - posted on 12/09/2011

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I think it's wrong. Even though it's messed up for a father to deny his child while the mom's pregnant, you have to realize everyone makes mistakes & has a right to change their mind. He might have realized his stupidity once he saw his child for the first time. A lot of dads don't accept that they are a father until they actually lay eyes on their child. You can't tell a father how he feels about his own child because they're his own feelings. Denying him access is harmful to the child too. Most children without dads don't have one because he doesn't want to be in their life, not because their mom won't let him - which can cause resentment toward you & unneccessary emotional stress. Also, if the dad really wants to, he can take you to court, which would be a mess you can avoid. I think you should set your own feelings aside & think of the feelings of your child. This guy could end up being a great dad & a positive influence in your child's life.

[deleted account]

Nothing in the world wrong w/ breastfeeding for 3 years. Way better than denying your children a chance to know THEIR father. Crummy man or not... I hope your children don't end up hating you when they learn that you are the reason that they never met their dad.

My ex didn't hardly ever SEE his son til he was a year and a half. Still only sees the kids 2-3 times/year. I can't stand the man, but my kids love their daddy and I couldn't live w/ myself if I was the one to take that away from them.

Jodi - posted on 12/07/2011

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Wrong. If he is the father and once he realises he is the father, and he wants a relationship with the child, it is his right. The child ALSO has a right to know its father. Just because he is a shit of a partner doesn't mean he won't make a good father once he gets used to the idea.

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Stifler's - posted on 02/04/2012

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It's about the child so I feel that it's wrong to deny your kid access to their father unless there is a very good reason.

Catherine - posted on 02/03/2012

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My husband and I split I fell pregnant while we were split he took on the child, who calls him dad, we have since split the child is three years old now he still looks after him and takes him for acces. Although the child sees his biological father. If the father/dad wants to see the child then that child should be allowed the access, if he doesn't think he the father tell him to pay for dna test for the sake of the child! Good luck!

Emma - posted on 01/28/2012

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@ Innocentia Simango



Regarding SA law



On 1 July 2007, the new Children’s Act No. 38 of 2005 came into effect.

The point of the new Children’s Act is to improve and define the rights of children in line with our country’s Constitution. Part of what this legislation aims to do, is to define parental responsibilities and rights. 

When the legislation was being drafted, experts used as their framework something called “The Best Interests of the Child Standard.” This means that in all matters concerning the care, protection and wellbeing of a child, the child’s best interests is of paramount importance – more so than the rights of the parent.

In a nutshell

1. A child, male or female, becomes a major upon reaching 18.

2. The biological mother of a child has full parental responsibility of the child, whether she’s married or unmarried.

3. The biological father of a child has full parental responsibility of the child if he’s married to the child’s mother or if he was married to the child’s mother at the time of the child’s conception, birth or any time between the child’s conception and birth.

4. An unmarried biological father may ask a court of law to grant him full parental responsibilities if he:

• at the time of the child’s birth, is living with the mother in a permanent life partnership, or

• consents to be identified as the child’s father, or

• successfully applies to be identified as the child’s father, or

• pays damages in terms of Customary Law, or

• contributes or has tried to contribute to the child’s maintenance and upbringing for a reasonable period.

What does this mean?

It doesn’t matter whether the parents are married and they conceive a child, or, whether they marry after conception and before the birth of a child: they’re both equally responsible for that child. Nothing has changed as regards the law concerning minor children.

Full parental responsibilities and rights

In legal terms, what does the phrase “full parental responsibilities and rights” actually mean and include?

1. The responsibility and right to care for the child;

2. To maintain contact with the child;

3. To act as guardian of the child;

4. To contribute to the maintenance of the child.

Fathers have more rights now

There are various other matters which a parent or guardian would have to administer, safeguard and consent to for the child.

Under the old dispensation, where parties were divorced, one parent (usually the mother) would usually be awarded custody of a minor child and the other parent (usually the father) would be entitled to visitation rights.

The custodian parent would be vested with making all of the day-to-day decisions of the minor child including which school the child would attend, what religion the child would practice, where the child would reside and so on.

This is now no longer the case.

The parents now have joint parental responsibilities and rights, and all major decisions relating to the minor child need to be taken by the parties jointly, which is a far healthier situation for the child.

And if my child is illegitimate?

When a child’s parents are not married, the mother remains the primary caregiver of the child and the father can apply for rights if he complies with one of the requirements mentioned above. Again, the natural father of a child born of unmarried parents still has to pay maintenance for a child under 18 years if age, whether he wants to or not.

What if the father won’t pay?

Importantly, the biological father is responsible for the payment of maintenance for the child, regardless of whether he chooses to apply for parental responsibility or not. If there is a dispute between the child’s parents about maintenance, the matter has to be dealt with by a family attorney, social worker, social services professional or other suitably qualified person.

This applies regardless of whether the child was born before or after the commencement of the new Act.

Some women find themselves in situations where they are involved in relationships, fall pregnant out of wedlock and then discover that their partners want nothing to do with them. They choose to have the child, and their partners attempt to avoid responsibility.

In situations like these, the mother is entitled to approach the maintenance court for the area she lives in to claim maintenance from the father of the child. The court will make an order for an appropriate amount. There are people at the court to assist the mother in completing the necessary documentation and serving the papers on the father to appear at court.

Once an order has been made for the payment of such maintenance, and the father fails to pay the maintenance, he could be sent to prison for failing to do so. When the father of an illegitimate or even a legitimate child is unable to pay maintenance for a child, the court may look to the grandparents of the minor child on the father’s side, to decide whether they are capable of paying maintenance for that child.

So let’s say there’s a situation where, for example, the father of a minor child is killed in an accident, and there are paternal grandparents who are financially able, the mother could ask the court to get the grandparents to give a good reason why they should not be ordered to pay maintenance for the minor child.

Do you have a cohabitation contract?

It is extremely important for women to know their rights. Not just in relation to children, but in relation to their rights generally.

For example, did you know that in South Africa there is no law governing cohabitation relationships? Therefore, in a situation where a couple who may have lived together for many years, when that relationship ends, there are no “common-law husband or wife” rights, as such.

Even if you lived in your boyfriend’s house for 15 years, and have several children together, if that relationship suddenly ends, you might find yourself without a home, unless there’s a contract in place.

You can approach any legal aid clinic or lawyer to help you draw up a simple document that gives you the same rights as a married woman, even if you’re not married. Do it for your peace of mind, and your children’s security.

Adam and Steve?

In South Africa, recently, in terms of the Civil Union Act which became effective on 1 December 2006, same-sex marriages are legally recognised. The laws that apply to children in heterosexual marriages also apply to children in same-sex marriages.

In a recent decision in South African courts, the Department of Home Affairs was ordered to register both parents in a same-sex marriage as the parents of a minor child, to enable a divorce to proceed and to ensure that the parental responsibilities and rights could be properly regulated.

Whose surname does the baby get?

If a child is born out of wedlock, the child will take the mother’s surname, unless the father of the child consents to having his surname being registered on the birth certificate.

If the parties are living together in a marriage-like relationship, then the parents may wish for the child to have the father’s surname.

However, if there is no such relationship then it would make sense for the child to have the mother’s surname to avoid confusion. It’s an entirely personal decision. If you gave your child the father’s surname, then later came to regret it and wished to change the child’s surname, you need the father’s permission, or the Department of Home Affairs will refuse.

You need permission to go overseas with the kids

When a child born in wedlock is taken out of the country, in the company of only one parent, it is necessary to have the written consent of the parent who stays behind. This becomes especially important in divorce cases, where the spouse who remains behind in South Africa may be concerned that the spouse who is travelling might be trying to kidnap the child.

If the child is born out of wedlock it depends on whether or not the father of the child has parental responsibilities and rights and, if so, then his written consent will also be required.

A will is extremely important

If you have children, the issues in a will which need to be dealt with are:

• Who should be their guardians?

• Who will be responsible for their education?

• Who will be responsible for managing your financial affairs?

• It is important to decide who to appoint as Trustees.

• It is important to appoint as your Executor and Trustees people whom you know personally and not, for example, huge financial institutions.

• If you die without a Will, then your Estate will be wound up as an intestate Estate and a person whom you do not know may be appointed to manage your affairs.

Outdated terminology

Courts used to use words like “custody” and “access” when they referred to children’s rights. The terms which are now used are “care” and “contact.”

A parent is now no longer a “custodian” but may provide the “primary place of residence” for a minor child, and have the “care” of the child.



Hope that helps.

[deleted account]

Did he have a justifiable reason to doubt paternity? Has a paternity test been performed, banishing all doubt? If yes, then it is incredibly wrong and very anti-good-mothering to deny a father access to a child. Children are not a bargaining chip and women/men who use them as such should be sterilized.

Innocentia - posted on 12/09/2011

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hi all

I'm in South Africa......I dont think he will take me to court.i decided to leave him alone and i told him if he wants to walk away now i will let him have any access to the child...imagine my distress when i found out they were actually twins.even my mom called him when the kids were born,but did he show up?? and the time i was pregnant was the hardest for me.....but 5 months after they were born i found a great job,now they are almost two he calls me in all the hours of the night.now they are his,he cant sleep because of what he done to me.here if a man denies you it says pretty much you are a slut...i wont deny that i never went the proper channels with the pregnancy,i never went to his family with my uncles to inform his family and ask for damages.my family advised me not too.so his not welcomed in my home.for him to gain access again it will cost him many thousands of rands.breastfeeding for 3 years WOW

Maree - posted on 12/08/2011

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Yeah i guess the laws are very different there.

My ex sister in law bf her son for 3 years so that my brother couldn't bring his child to Sydney for visitation. (she is interstate)...

When i was having issues with my ex and my son was 1 year old...my ex was getting drunk and putting my son in the car. My solicitor said i should continue to bf as they are very unlikely to give overnights while bf-ing. It made no difference as i was going to bf anyway but because i was so concerned about his safety,it gave me hope that i could keep my son safe for a while longer in hopes that his dad would grow up and stop doing stupid things.

Even if you don't bf,they are still reluctant to give a child to the dad overnight under 3 years of age unless the mum agrees or the father has been very involved with the child up until the break up...and can prove it.

Saying that,when going through mediation(which you have to do before having a hearing in the family court of Australia) they can be very pushy and sometimes not really leave you with much of a choice...

Innocentia,since i don't think you are in Australia....don't risk refusing visitation as from what i have heard,especially in the US...if you deny for no good reason they are very tough on you if you end up in court over it. Here in Australia,women get away with too much....and i guess so do men sometimes.

[deleted account]

Kel.... I breastfed my son for 3.25 years, but it had zero to do w/ visitations w/ his father and everything to do w/ the best interest of my son. Of course, he DID have his very first overnight visitation (for a week straight) w/ his father at 2.75 years and came home nursing like he'd never been gone. ♥ My lower supply just ticked him off for a couple of weeks. lol

Maree - posted on 12/08/2011

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Here in Australia they don't like to give overnight access to fathers when the baby is young...it's more like 3 years old unless the mum agrees to it.

If the baby is breast fed then there is absolutely no way they will give overnights so some people who are scared to give the baby to the dad overnight will breast feed for ages...I think the limit is around 3 and then they can enforce overnights whether you bf or not.

Not sure what your laws are like where you live but probably a bad idea to deny visitation unless you have a good reason..you will end up losing in the end and so will the child.

Sherri - posted on 12/07/2011

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Wrong!! The father has access to the child the minute he or she is born.

You honestly have no say in that because all he has to do is take you to court and get his justified visitation.

Also he had zero responsibility when you were pregnant. His responsibilities did not start until the minute your child was born.

[deleted account]

If he IS the father.... it's wrong to deny access except in the cases of abuse or drugs (in which case it's USUALLY supervised access).

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