What Is An Unfit Parent?
Unfit Parent Definition
An unfit parent puts the child at serious risk by their inability to provide a safe environment for the child.
Unfit parent definitions vary between each state.
But, in general, an unfit parent is one who cannot provide proper care, guidance, and support for a child.
What Makes A Parent Unfit
What makes a parent unfit varies from state to state.
But, in general, an unfit parent is one who is:
- abusive to the child
- neglectful of the child
- unable to provide proper care
- addicted to drugs
- abandoning or deserting the child
- diagnosed with mental illness
How To Prove A Parent Unfit
If your ex is an unfit parent, you probably want to know how to prove a parent unfit.
The courts will need evidence that this parent is unfit.
So, to prove a parent unfit, you need to first gather evidence.
Evidence proving a parent unfit could be things like:
- medical records of treatment for injuries
- criminal records of the unfit parent
- videos, photos, and audio of physical or verbal abuse
- police reports of domestic violence
- photos and videos of the unfit parent’s home
- testimonies from family, teachers, counselors, friends, etc.
There are three scenarios for how to prove a parent unfit:
- you already have a child custody order from the courts
- you are separated, but do not have child custody orders
- you are not the parent but are trying to prove both parents unfit
If you already have child custody orders, you will have to modify the custody orders.
You will need to file a Petition To Modify Child Custody.
If you don’t have child custody orders, you need to establish custody.
You will need to file a Petition For Custody.
If you are not the parent, you need to establish guardianship.
You will need to file a Petition For Guardianship.
When you file any of these petitions, you’ll need to include your evidence proving the parent unfit.
File your forms at the Superior Clerk’s Office.
After this, you’ll need to serve the unfit parent with the Petition that you filed.
Once the parent has been served, you can schedule a court hearing.
At this court hearing, the judge will review your evidence.
If the judge deems the parent unfit, then they will issue new child custody orders.
Proving Mental Illness In Child Custody
Mental illness is one of the reasons a judge will change custody.
How do you go about proving mental illness in child custody?
To prove mental illness in a child custody case the parent must:
- be found mentally ill by the court
- be certified mentally ill by two physicians
- have been admitted to an institution for the mentally ill
- be under treatment for mental illness
Mental illness is treatable.
So, a judge may not make permanent changes to custody.
Unfit Father Examples
Let’s look at some unfit father examples.
Some unfit father examples would be a father who:
- is hitting his children
- cannot provide safe housing for the children
- puts the children in dangerous situations
- is addicted to drugs or alcohol
- neglects the children by not feeding or caring for them
These are just some examples of an unfit parent.