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Interstate Child Custody Battle Between Adoptive Mother, Biological Father Settled

By Sheryl Rentz on March 23, 2011

The Los Angeles Times reports that an inter-state custody battle between a girl’s adoptive mother and her biological father was recently settled. The now-famous case, which has been referred to as the “Baby Vanessa” case, involved a woman from California and a man from Ohio. The contentious child custody case has lasted for more than two years.

The woman started the adoption process before the girl was born, but proceedings were stopped after the girl’s biological father filed for custody. The girl’s biological mother alleged that her pregnancy was the result of a one-night stand and believed the man was not the father. However, a genetic test proved otherwise. Court records from 2005 showed the man had spent time in jail for domestic violence, further complicating the family law matter. After the two parties were not able to reach an agreement during mediation, a child custody trial was scheduled in Ohio in 2009. In July 2010, the woman was ordered to return the girl to Ohio, but appealed the decision and was able to keep the girl until further notice.

Under the terms of the settlement, the woman now has full custody of the girl. The child’s grandmother, who has also been involved in the case, was granted visitation rights. The biological father will be given some visitation rights, but the details have yet to be worked out. Many legal experts believed the litigious child custody case would go all the way to the federal Supreme Court to examine issues surrounding the rights of children who are in foster care situations.

Decisions regarding child custody are typically based upon a child’s “best interests.” If you want to ensure that a judge understands fully what is best for your child regarding their custody and other visitation issues, contact Sheryl R. Rentz. As a highly skilled and experienced Pennsylvania visitation issues lawyer, she can explain what your legal options are for your specific family law situation and will aggressively fight to make sure your children are given the best possible arrangement. Contact The Law Offices of Sheryl R. Rentz by calling 610-645-0100 today.

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