Not to put father's name on the birth certificate?

(78 Posts)
chesterberry Sun 30-Jun-13 20:18:18

Ex-partner and I had been together just over three years when I found out I was pregnant (32 weeks along now) and living together for 6 months. We definitely were not planning on having children yet and baby was not planned but I was excited when I found out.

Unfortunately ex did not share the excitement. Initially he insisted it couldn't be his as we were using contraception (condoms) and then when he finally came around to the idea that it was he started trying to persuade me to have an abortion. Things came to a head when he came home one night having had too many drinks and started threatening me, saying he's been hoping I'd miscarry and that if I didn't have an abortion he'd get rid of it himself. He didn't actually do anything to physically hurt me and that was very out of character for him (I realise finding out he was going to be a father was putting him under a huge amount of stress) but after that things ended quickly and he moved out. He has since gone back to his home town over 300 miles away (we met at uni and had stayed in our uni area after graduating, along with lots of our friends). He has been quite clear that he wants nothing to do with me or the baby and has gone back to saying it isn't his. He's 26 (as am I) so young but not young enough to excuse this behaviour IMO.

The baby is definitely his, but even so after he left I decided I won't be putting his name on the birth certificate (I will leave it blank) as he clearly wants nothing to do with the baby and I don't think I would trust him with the baby if he were to turn around in 6 months and say he wants access. Most of my friends and family agree that after the way he has acted it is reasonable not to put his name on the birth certificate as he has been very clear that he does not want to be a father to this baby, however I have one friend in particular who feels very strongly that it would be very unreasonable of me not to put his name on the certificate as it means if he realises in years to come he has made a mistake it will be more difficult for him to gain parental rights and see his child. My feeling is that this would be a good thing - I don't really want him to turn around and demand access to my baby in the future, disrupting our lives, because it suits him after he has so definitely decided he wants nothing to do with us now and am worried he could use those access rights to make things difficult, for example were I to find a new partner.

I will always be honest to my child about who his/her dad is regardless of whether his name is on the birth certificate, I would not deny my child that right, and if when s/he is older they want to meet him I would not be against that. I have stayed in touch with his mother also and she will come down to visit her new grandchild with his sister when the baby is born, so I am not denying the baby that side of his/her family either. Is my reasoning for not putting his name on the birth certificate, largely because I don't want him to be able to turn around in 3 years time and start demanding to see his child just because he's heard I'm with a new partner (for example), purely selfish? Am I being unreasonable? People's thoughts or own experiences would be very welcomed. Thanks.

OldLadyKnowsNothing Sun 30-Jun-13 20:21:34

You're not married. You can't put his name on the birth cert unless he registers the birth with you.

And I guess that won't be happening.

HairyGrotter Sun 30-Jun-13 20:22:31


Also, the father has to be present when registering the birth in order to be put on the certificate, unless you're married I believe.

My DD's father wanted nothing to do with us when he found out I was pregnant, he's not on her certificate and we've never heard from him again...quite nice haha

RaisingChaotic Sun 30-Jun-13 20:22:46

Legally you can't put his name on the bc unless you're either married or he's there with you.

RaisingChaotic Sun 30-Jun-13 20:23:22

x posts

Meglet Sun 30-Jun-13 20:25:59

yanbu. I would leave it off. Be honest with your DC about what happened (in child appropriate terms) and keep in touch with his family. He's swanned off and left you to it so personally I don't think he should be given any formal acknowledgement the way things stand. Make sure you use your surname too <<bitter experience>>.

If a miracle happens and he bucks his ideas up, has regular contact with his DC and is no longer abusive then you could consider putting his name on the birth certificate at some point in the future.

Meglet Sun 30-Jun-13 20:27:06

oh, I forgot that bit where he has to be with you anyway. So leave it off.

MrsHuxtable Sun 30-Jun-13 20:29:09

Can the OP get child maintenance without the certificate?

I wish that I could have put my DS's fathers name on the birth certificate. Personally I think it is nice for your DC to be able to say that that is his father, whether he has any contact or not. however, you probably will not be able to, I was also in a position where my ex wasn't interested and wasn't with me when I registered the birth - decision made for me (and I suspect that you will be in the same boat). I would however, encourage you to offer him that chance, however much you may feel it is "easier" not to. If he did actually get to the point of registering your DC's birth with you, he may rethink his position on being interested in your DC's life and whatever you think of him, that would be a good thing.

Lioninthesun Sun 30-Jun-13 20:30:46

He can still demand to see his child though. Agree you can't do it without him there at the Registrar's anyway so no point worrying if you are doing the right thing;he has decided that bit.
You can still claim via CSA and even that has nothing to do with contact.
Basically, it is and always will be his right to see his kid, no matter how awkward for you. Any judge will back him up on that. It can be frustrating to feel unsettled (same situ here, as in the fear of ex turning up out of the blue) but really the child has a right to see their dad, even if he isn't a particularly great one or has been absent for their entire life.

chesterberry Sun 30-Jun-13 20:31:57

Oh! I can't believe I didn't realise that. Well that makes it an easy decision then as I'm fairly certain that he isn't going to want to come with me to register the birth. That makes me feel much better as now I won't have to feel guilt for leaving him off, or explain myself to others.

Thanks mumsnet!

Lioninthesun Sun 30-Jun-13 20:32:03

Yes, MrsH you can still get maintenance without his name on BC. He may ask for a DNA test though.

MrsHuxtable you can apply for child mainentance without his name being on the birth certificate, but it may take longer if he denies being the father. If he does register his name on teh certificate then he has acknowledged his financial responsiblity - OP my DS has never had a penny!

LookingForwardToMarch Sun 30-Jun-13 20:32:33

Morally I think you should just mention to him that if he wants his name on the certificate he will have to come with you, those are the rules.

After what you have said it is very unlikely he will agree. In which case it is entirely his fault and you can't be blamed in the future.

And at least you can hold your head up high if he starts blarting in a few years or if your child asks why there is no fathers name on their bc.

LookingForwardToMarch Sun 30-Jun-13 20:35:00

X-posted with a few there! Problem solved op grin

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 30-Jun-13 20:36:01

csa do not require the father to be named on a cert or to have PR to collect maintainance, so yes she can.


He's not interested why chase him,should he change his mind years down the line it should be hard for him. You don't get to walk in and out of your child's life when ever the fancy takes you your friend is an idiot.

Lioninthesun Sun 30-Jun-13 20:36:40

OP if you are going to claim maintenance do it as soon as the baby is born - CSA won't back date and if he wants a DNA proof test then it may be delayed by a few weeks anyway.
As I said, just because he pays maintenance doesn't make any difference re contact; he can still turn up regardless of whether he pays or not. You may or may not want to save some £ for your DC this way (you can put it in a separate account if it makes you uncomfortable). Personally I feel there is no harm in it, as it is for your DC, not you.

MrsHuxtable Sun 30-Jun-13 20:38:24

If the certificate makes no difference to maintenance and the father can still get access to the child anyway, I think I would leave it up to him whether the name is on the bc or not.

The only reason I'm saying this is because DH doesn't have his dad's name on his bc and at various points in life he's been upset about it. He says it makes him feel like there's a piece missing of his identity. It came up when we got married and you have to produce you BC, then when you have children etc. Then his dad died and DH wasn't acknowledged etc. There's always this blank that most other people don't have.

On the other side, I can see why you feel your ex shouldn't be on the bc. It's not like he's done anything so far to deserve it.

Lioninthesun Sun 30-Jun-13 20:40:34

My dad wasn't on mine and my parents were married. David Cameron didn't turn up for his child's either! I think it is more common now that it was years ago and doesn't mean much either way to most people. I knew who my dad was. Most dads are busy working anyway.

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 30-Jun-13 20:42:02

Why morally should she tell him?

A quick google will tell him he can get a court order for PR should he wish to try. He's made his feelings known.

Automatic PR if he does not change his mind ( and is often done by twats to cause issues) can create all manor of problems for the op in the future just because he bothered to show up for a appointment that he expressed no desire or interest in.

A unmarried mother in the absence of a court order has the legal and moral right to not name if she chooses not to.

MissStrawberry Sun 30-Jun-13 20:45:48

Rightly or wrongly I have always felt ashamed that my father's name isn't on the birth certificate even though I know who he is.

OP I wish you luck with your pregnancy and enjoy your lovely new baby when he/she arrives smile.

Lioninthesun Sun 30-Jun-13 20:46:19

If he is anything like my ex he won't even have looked into it. I told ex the Registrar date 2 weeks in advance and he still tried to say in Court that I had deliberately gone without him so his name wouldn't be on it hmm when in reality he simply didn't show, which in hindsight was a blessing. So to be fair he probably wouldn't turn up anyway.

apostropheuse Sun 30-Jun-13 20:46:33

David Cameron didn't have to turn up to have his name on the child's birth certificate as he is married to the child's mother, lionsmum.

If you're married the mother can put the father's name on the certificate. If you're not married she can't.

ajandjjmum Sun 30-Jun-13 20:47:55

It wasn't David Cameron, it was Ed Milliband who didn't turn up. As they weren't married at the time, his name could not go on the birth certificate.

LookingForwardToMarch Sun 30-Jun-13 20:49:23

I didn't mean morally as in she would be a bad person if she didn't.

From what op has said this twunt will almost certainly refuse to attend.

I was just thinking that if she offered she would have the moral highground if her ex decides to go all bleeding hearts on her later and tells all and sundry that she is a nasty so and so who purposely didn't tell him the date and so he had no choice to be on there.

Ginderella Sun 30-Jun-13 20:50:03

Are you going to bother him for child support? Have you thought of a complete and clear break? He has no automatic right to see your child - the child has a right to see his/her parents.

JackNoneReacher Sun 30-Jun-13 20:50:37

whatever you think of him, that would be a good thing.

I disagree, from your description of this abusive man I think you'd (both) be better off without him.

chesterberry Sun 30-Jun-13 20:51:45

I guess it does seem fair to give him the opportunity to have his name on the birth certificate, although I expect he will say no and won't want to travel down here to do it. Unfortunately he has had a major falling out with his mum over this whole situation (I have told her she doesn't need to pick sides and I will let her see her grandchild regardless but she says she is just so disappointed in him and how he's acted she can hardly bear to be around him) and they were very close so if she hasn't got him to change his mind yet I don't think anything will.

In terms of CSA I wasn't planning on asking for any, I was hoping if I didn't acknowledge him as the father anywhere legally it would make it very difficult for him to turn around in years to come wanting to be involved, but is that not the case? He would definitely want a DNA test but baby is 100% his so that's fine. My worry though is that if I am asking him for money he is more likely to turn around and demand access to make things difficult whereas if I don't want anything from him hopefully he won't get in contact unless he feels a genuine desire to see his baby. If he has a genuine desire to know his child I would never stop that, but it is just the fear of him using the child to have control over a part of my life in years to come that worries me.

morethanpotatoprints Sun 30-Jun-13 20:54:58

my fathers name isn't on my bc, and I don't know who he is. Sometimes I wished I'd had his name so at least I would know who he was.
OP you can't run your life round a weasel like him, he doesn't deserve to be on your childs certificate. smile

katydid02 Sun 30-Jun-13 20:55:41

Leave it off; he won't have parental responsibility and you will have a lot less headaches as a result.

Lioninthesun Sun 30-Jun-13 21:02:26

Sorry was thinking of Milliband blush
Thanks AJ
It makes not a jot of difference legally as to his rights if he pays or not. It can be a ballache to get the letters from CSA but if he lives miles away he will hardly be moving nearer to 'participate' with a child he really doesn't want. It would be too much like hard work. My ex pays £13 per week and took us to Court (before he was paying £90 per week and the Judge confirmed as bio dad he is to pay - no surprise there) so he 'lost' his job and now has one where 15% of his wage is apparently £13 per week instead hmm and yet still manages to live in London... I do it for DD. I know ex is a waster but also know at some point in the future one or both of them will be curious to meet. Either way, at least he can pretend he attempted to do SOMETHING for her even if that was due to me calling CSA in the first place

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 30-Jun-13 21:09:48

Feel free to check this with a law person.

In the uk having his name on any formal or legal document other than a birth cert or court order makes no difference at all to any future attempt he may or may not make with regard to your child.

Csa makes no difference at all with contact

A unmarried named on the birth cert father has certain responsibilities most of these are none enforceable BY you only claim able by him even if he's just doing it to wind you up.

You cannot make him...

Act like a dad
Have any contact
Be reasonable

The only thing you can make him do ( if he is not self employed or a tosser who job jumps) is pay the csa assessment.

Without PR he can do nothing to you or your child without your consent with PR

He can stop you moving house.prevent you going on holiday outside of the uk,collect your child from school as long as he/she goes willingly without you knowing and access any and all information regarding your child,make a school deny one of your instructions in favour of his refusal (LA rules state they have to side with the person refusing consent unless its a cp issue).

Should he wish to step up and be a dad at any time in the future he can either request you sign a PR agreement or take you to court to obtain a PR order and should his intentions be vindictive you can choose to challenge it.

Why give him the ability before you have any knowledge of his intentions.

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 30-Jun-13 21:13:17

And maintainance having no relation to contact works both ways not paying wont stop him paying wont make getting it easier.

"I have one friend in particular who feels very strongly that it would be very unreasonable of me not to put his name on the certificate as it means if he realises in years to come he has made a mistake it will be more difficult for him to gain parental rights and see his child. "
Why is this friend so concerned with HIS rights?

chesterberry Sun 30-Jun-13 21:37:38

Oh, I didn't realise having his name on the birth certificate would give him so many rights. I thought it was just a case of the contact he is entitled to, I didn't realise so much other stuff would come into it regarding the child. In that case I am even less keen to have his name on it.

If he applies for Parental Rights in the future, having not been on the birth certificate, is he pretty much guaranteed them? My thinking is that one of the reasons he is so vehemently denying this baby is anything to do with him is that he does not want to have to pay anything. We had plans to go travelling next year and had both been saving for that - I think he has about £6000 in savings. Obviously I have cancelled that plan and the money I saved (not as much as he managed unfortunately as he also got some inheritance money) will now go towards baby but I think he still has dreams of travelling the world and doesn't want anything to get in the way of that. I think he is worried about having to give his savings to me and the baby and cancel his future plans so I am worried if I force him to pay he will feel more anger towards him and thus be more likely to get parental rights out of spite. I am really hoping if I ignore the fact he exists completely and don't ask for anything he will be less inclined to become involved for fear that as soon as he applies for any rights I will start chasing him for money, although obviously the fact his mum and sister want to be involved in baby's life is a bit of a worry as I can't just try and lose contact with him completely. Although as I said if he wants to become involved to get to know baby that is fine, it is just the aspect of him being able to have control of my and baby's life (especially in light of what sockreturningpixie said) that makes me concerned.

Kind of wish I'd lied and said baby was someone else's when he first suggested it now! Would have made things a lot easier.

chesterberry Sun 30-Jun-13 21:45:05

Whereyouleftit - Why is this friend so concerned with HIS rights?

We share a lot of mutual friends. Some of them (largely the ones I trusted enough to give the whole story) have decided they don't want to see him any more but some of them remain friends with both of us and I certainly haven't asked anybody to pick sides or become involved. Most of the friends who remain friends with both of us still see my point of view in thinking that ex has made his choice by walking out on me and baby and has as such given up his right to automatic recognition as the parent, but this particular friend (still in contact with my ex) believes very strongly every father should have the right to see his child regardless of his behaviour because everybody deserves a second chance. As it is I will explain that it's not my choice as ex has to turn up to register brith and just keep my fingers crossed that nobody manages to persuade him to come down to sign birth certificate.

Burmillababe Sun 30-Jun-13 21:46:43

YABU - if he wants his name on it, unfortunately that is his right, even if he is a tosser. A birth certificate is just a statement, it doesn't give him parental responsibility ( and it sounds like he won't step up anyway). Personally I feel like you owe it to your child. Just my opinion though.

Lioninthesun Sun 30-Jun-13 21:53:02

Don't feel you have to tell any of them about how he can use his name on it to control you though! If you do they will think he will want to be on it even if it is just to make your life harder - or they might do anyway. Just state he has to be there to be on it and leave it at that. If he knows the date and time then it is up to him to look into it further and see if he wants the power over you that goes with it.

"this particular friend (still in contact with my ex) believes very strongly every father should have the right to see his child regardless of his behaviour because everybody deserves a second chance."
Ah, I see. I suppose I've never been big on 'parental rights'. Children have rights, parents have responsibilities. Which your ex is abdicating from.

Lioninthesun Sun 30-Jun-13 22:00:32

Really, if he is going to be an arse then he will be, regarless of whether he is paying for DC or not.
Ex saw DD right up until CSA contacted him when she was 6mo and hasn't seen her since. Even pretended to me that a solicitor had advised him not to to help his tribunal case hmm. My point is the arsehole-type men never read up and all seem to expect if they don't see the child they don't have to pay. Some may feel if they are paying they get to see the child and start being a pest, but most will give up when they realise seeing the child also means looking after it and having to give up free time/weekends.

Burmillababe Sun 30-Jun-13 22:00:42

And if you have concerns about him then you can stop him having any contact, through legal channels if necessary - write down any abusive behaviour with dates, times etc just in case.

Snazzywaitingforsummer Sun 30-Jun-13 22:03:19

I would leave it alone. If he is bothered he will make the effort when the baby arrives to get his name on the certificate. Given the way he has behaved I don't think he deserves to have you chasing after him to get him to participate.

ladylambkin Sun 30-Jun-13 22:03:51

If you make a claim through CSA they will contact him firstly by phone to confirm parentage of the child. If they cant get him on the phone they will send a Maintenance Enquiry Form to him by post if he does not return this then parentage will be presumed. If he questions parentage DNA testing will be offered which he must pay for. In cases where the man is proven not to be the father then this fee does not need to be paid. If after a maintenance calculation is in place and he disputes parentage then he needs to apply to the court for Declaration of Non is too late at this point to have DNA testing through CSA.

Enjoy the rest of your pregnancy and good luck with your new arrival.

queenofthepirates Sun 30-Jun-13 22:24:02

Just wanted to add that I think you are doing marvellously well in the circumstances. It can't be easy for you but you seem to be coping admirably.

Parenting isn't a right, it's a privilege. As the responsible parent, I feel you have the right to decide whether your ex's name goes on the BC. If you have no wish to poke the bear then don't. Single parenting is full of its own unique challenges and really need not be further complicated by a man who refuses to live up to his responsibilities. Your choice and you decide. He has no right and you have no moral obligation given his behaviour.

pickledthing Sun 30-Jun-13 22:31:32

Being the natural father does not necessarily give a father any parental rights

Babies need to be registered within six weeks of being born

More couples are becoming parents without making any legal commitment to each other as partners. Being unmarried will mean that a father will have no automatic rights as a parent – he will have to take action to acquire those rights.

How your child’s birth is registered, and who is there to register the birth, will have an impact on who will have Parental Responsibility (the right to be responsible for a child).

Birth registration
Registering the birth of your child
The birth should be registered within 42 days (six weeks) of the baby being born.

All original birth certificates require the details of the biological mother and where possible the biological father.

Birth registration is also tied up with Parental Responsibility. Parental Responsibility is something that all mothers have automatically, and all fathers if they are present at birth registration or if they were married to the mother at the time of birth.

Who should register the birth?
If the mother and father were married at the time of the birth, either can register the birth on their own.

If the mother and father are unmarried, responsibility for registering the birth is the mother’s.

If an unmarried father is not present and does not sign the register, his details will not be included on the birth certificate and he will not gain Parental Responsibility for his child, unless:

He makes a statutory declaration acknowledging that he is the father, which the mother must give to the registrar, or
A parental responsibility agreement or court order has been made and this document is presented at the register office.
An unmarried father may register the birth of his child without the mother if:

She makes a statutory declaration acknowledging him as the father of the child, or
He brings along a parental responsibility agreement or a court order.
An unmarried father may have his details included at a later date by re-registering the birth.

Further information
For more information go to the Directgov website.

Parental responsibility
What is parental responsibility?
Parental Responsibility (PR) is a legal term.

PR is defined in the Children Act 1989 as “all the rights, duties, powers, responsibilities and authorities which by law a parent of a child has in relation to the child and his property”.

Without it, you don’t have any right to be involved in decisions such as where the child lives, their education, religion or medical treatment. A father with Parental Responsibility can also have more of a say in whether their child is taken out of the country.

From 1st December 2003, fathers who register a child’s birth with the mother automatically gained Parental Responsibility. However this only applies to children who are registered after 1st December 2003.

If a father’s name was put on your birth certificate before 1st December 2003, he will not have parental responsibility unless he has either been married to the child’s mother or he has obtained it by court order or agreement. If a father’s name was not on the birth certificate before 1st December 2003, he can apply with the mothers agreement to re-register the child’s birth.

You automatically have PR if:
You are the biological mother of the child.
You are the father of the child and are married to (or later marry) the mother.
You are an unmarried father and are registered on the birth certificate; this applies only to those births registered since December 1 2003.
You have adopted the child.
You must take steps to acquire PR if:
You are an unmarried father and are not registered on the birth certificate.
You are not the biological parent, even if your partner is.
Ways to get PR:
If you are the biological father, you can act with the mother to re-register the birth to include your details on the birth certificate.
If you are the biological father, you can make a PR agreement with the mother’s consent.
If you are the biological father and the mother refuses to make a PR agreement, you can apply to the court for a PR order.
If you are the partner of the biological parent and your partner’s child lives with you, you can get PR in one of a number of ways:

you can ask the court for a Residence Order;
you can make a PR agreement with consent from the child’s parents;
you can apply for a court order; or,
you can apply for an Adoption Order.
Further information
The Directgov websitevhas more information on parental rights and responsibilities.

Child maintenance
As a parent, your financial responsibility for your child does not end when your relationship with the other parent ends.

Child maintenance is regular financial support towards a child’s everyday living costs. It is paid by the parent without the main day-to-day care of the child to the parent with the main care. Since April 10 2010, all parents with the main day-to-day care have been allowed to keep all of their child maintenance without it affecting out-of-work benefits.

You have two options for arranging maintenance: a private arrangement; or a statutory (legal) arrangement. The Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission was formed in 2008 to provide help in setting up both kinds of arrangements. This help is delivered through the Child Maintenance Options service and the Child Support Agency.

Child maintenance can be arranged privately between yourselves without any official or legal intervention, and this can be done in whichever way is best suited to your circumstances. Free help and tools are available to set up this kind of “family-based child maintenance arrangement” from the Child Maintenance Options service.

If you are not able to reach an agreement between yourselves, it is still possible to arrange maintenance through the Child Support Agency (CSA). There are plans to create a new statutory service but, until then, the CSA is still available.

Further information
Child Maintenance Options offers impartial information and advice to help parents make informed choices about child maintenance. Helpline 0800 988 0988 or text CALL to 66644 for a free call back.

The Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission is the statutory body responsible for the child maintenance system.

tiggytape Sun 30-Jun-13 22:36:16

If he applies for Parental Rights in the future, having not been on the birth certificate, is he pretty much guaranteed them?

Yes he can get PR later even if his name is on nothing official at any stage before that. Being granted PR gives him rights to an input in things like medical decisions and schooling but doesn't mean he gets to override you or turn up years later and start laying down the law. You don't have to agree to it but a court can order it. He doesn't need his name on the birth certificate to get it.

He hasn't given you much choice though - its not as if you've left him and if he won't register the baby with you his name cannot go on the certificate even if you want it there.

chesterberry Sun 30-Jun-13 22:40:46

Thanks everybody. It has been hard, the sad thing is that we had talked about having children (although always in the far far future) and I thought he would make a great dad. Up to this we rarely had any arguments, it is like he changed into a completely different person when he found out about the pregnancy. I think that made it both harder and easier - harder because I lost the person I loved but it was easier, ultimately, to leave him after some of the things he said and did as I felt I hardly knew him any more.

One of our mutual friends has hypothesised that finding out I was pregnant almost sent him into a kind of state of grieving for the future we had planned and that is why his response has been anger, denial and trying to change things back to how they were with talk of abortion etc. Maybe that is true and I do kind of feel sorry for him, but I wish he had been able to welcome the baby as an opportunity for a different kind of future rather than an end to his plans.

But otherwise I think I am lucky, have very supportive family, friends and work (am just about to complete NQT year as a teacher and am lucky baby is due in summer hols) and his mum has been brilliant. Things could definitely be a lot worse and although being a single mum isn't how I planned it to be I will have lots of support around me so hopefully will manage. So exciting to feel the baby moving and think that in a couple of months s/he will be here!

SoftKittyWarmKitty Sun 30-Jun-13 22:46:28

I've had a similar situation, except my DS was planned and my ex left for the OW when I was pregnant. He's never wanted anything to do with DS. I registered the birth alone and he's not on the BC. DS has my surname, too thank god smile.

Lioninthesun Sun 30-Jun-13 22:56:46

Single parenthood is a hard road but you sound pretty strong and sensible.
I always think with everything that it is better to prepare for the worst case though and then hope to be pleasantly surprised. I think the advice here has been good and you have a better understanding of where you stand, and where he does, or can if he wants to.

I wish you lots of luck and do also post in Lone Parents for advice or support if you need it at any point. We don't bite! smile

Yanbu at all, although his name wouldn't be put on unless he was with you anyway as you are not married. Hope everythings works well for you and your little one.
It will be a hard road, but many mothers go it alone and things will settle into place for you. Congratulations op on your pregnancythanks

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 30-Jun-13 23:12:15

Can I just clarify that if he applies to the court for PR if there is a valid reason he should not have it or it is not in the child's best interests then its not certain he will be granted PR.

It is a matter that will be heard by a judge both parents get to put forward their views then the judge decides.

Things that make it easier to obtain are things like showing a commitment to the child having a relationship with the child that sort of thing.

You would find it quite hard if you had not bothered for years.

NotYoMomma Sun 30-Jun-13 23:34:17

Also OP even if you are close to his mother REGISTER THE BABY WITH YOUR SURNAME AND NOT HIS

Inertia Sun 30-Jun-13 23:51:27

Did you have his threats of violence towards you whilst pregnant put on record (police, GP etc?). If not I would seriously consider doing that now- you can contact the police for advice, and you can explain to your midwife that your ex-partner made threats towards you and your unborn child, and that you do not want him to have contact or be present at the birth because you fear for the safety of the baby and yourself. The way you've minimised his threats to kill your unborn child are worrying- please don't make excuses for what he did and said, there is no justification for it.

As others have said , he can't be named on the BC if he isn't present at registration or married to the mother, and you are under no obligation to tell him. And frankly, given the threats of violence, I would actively avoid telling him until after the baby is born, birth is registered, and you are out of hospital.

You are entitled to make a claim via the CSA. If he didn't want the risk of a baby, he shouldn't have had sex. No contraception is 100% reliable.

As a parent he has responsibilities. The child has rights to contact with his or her parents, but if you feel that your child would be in danger then properly supervised contact needs to be arranged (which is why you need a record of the threats).

Good luck- you sound like you'll be a fantastic mother. (But please do get plenty of legal advice so that you're not doing your child a disservice in an attempt to pacify the baby's father ).

"One of our mutual friends has hypothesised that finding out I was pregnant almost sent him into a kind of state of grieving for the future we had planned and that is why his response has been anger, denial and trying to change things back to how they were with talk of abortion etc. Maybe that is true and I do kind of feel sorry for him, but I wish he had been able to welcome the baby as an opportunity for a different kind of future rather than an end to his plans."
I think your friend is being too kind here sad. I'd be more inclines to see your ex as the fair-weather type. Able to be a nice person when everything is going well, but as soon as things get a little bumpy, he bails. Still, every cloud has a silver lining - better to have found out that this is the type of person he is sooner than later. You're 26, educated, and have lots of support around you - the world is still very much your oyster smile.

dayshiftdoris Mon 01-Jul-13 00:57:48

I was in that same dilemma 9 years ago smile

After much heart ache & consideration (and other people's opinions!) - I didn't ask him to the registration.
I was still unsure and then the Registrar mentioned the Statutory Declaration which has been in place since the war do that soldiers could 'legitimise' the birth after coming home smile
A weight lifted - not putting him on was an option I could go back on to change in the future whereas putting him on wasn't.

He's still not on it, probably never will be

Oh and he pays CSA regardless.

dayshiftdoris Mon 01-Jul-13 00:59:01

Oh and you sound much more together than I was - good luck with baby. Enjoy every second smile

& what Not says, go for your surname, a man that puts no input in shouldn't have their surname imposed on that child. I regret giving my pfb her fathers surname, he hasn't made no imput or seen her since she was 7m, she is now 10yo and his family don't see her either, so i have a child with a surname that bares no meaningsad and fwiw my dd hates having a surname different from me, her sisters and all the family she knows!

Lweji Mon 01-Jul-13 06:31:49

Keep in mind that he should be chasing you for his parental rights. You should not be chasing him.
If he's interested, he'd ('ll) contact you regarding the birth register, as well as other aspects of the pregnancy and the baby.

Lweji Mon 01-Jul-13 06:38:14

On the other hand, some women faced with pregnancy chose abortion.
Men cannot control whether to have the baby or not.

So, I don't think men who do not want a baby when it happens accidentally are worse than women choosing to have abortions.

(this one is a twat because he made threats to try to get an abortion, though - for that reason alone, he should not have his name on the birth certificate)

MissStrawberry Mon 01-Jul-13 07:18:50

Maintenance and access are separate issues. He should pay maintenance but he isn't buying time with his child, he is supporting him/her financially as he should. Access is completely separate.

IMO you should tell him he has to show up if he wants his name on the certificate and you should claim maintenance from him.

He might have been a shit boyfriend but it doesn't mean he won't change and be an excellent father.

MissStrawberry Mon 01-Jul-13 07:23:21

pumpkinsweetie - change your DDs name! It is so sad to hear it upsets her.

She was born early 2003 so i'm not sure whether gov changes came in by then, would it cost money ?

bochead Mon 01-Jul-13 07:57:44

I look upon parental responsibility as a grave duty and one that should only be bestowed on those who are willing to put the child first at all times. In this case your ex has done a runner and left you (and therefore your bubba) totally unsupported.

My ex left when I was 7 month pregnant. His name is not on the birth certificate and the child has MY surname. At the time I was devastated and to be honest worried massively about the social stigma etc and how it would impact my child throughout his life. However nearly 9 years on the benefits have become obvious.

Given the threats of violence I would have a chat with Women's Aid about the legalities of it all. Sadly abuse all too often starts in pregnancy/babyhood or just after the wedding. It's a pattern they recognise. You need to know how to protect this child as a matter of urgency. Currently this baby is at risk from his/her own father. You need to assimilate, process and act on that fact.

His actions aren't currently showing that he's gonna step up to the plate and co-parent with you in any capacity. If you are unmarried the law allows you to add the father's name (& so give him legal rights) any time up until that child is 18. Therefore IF he subsequently sees the light and becomes Daddy of the year the option will be there to honor his active care and participation in raising his child by adding his name at that point. He'll have to visit the registry office tho - the law insists he does the legwork wink.

IneedAsockamnesty Mon 01-Jul-13 14:14:00

She was born early 2003 so i'm not sure whether gov changes came in by then, would it cost money ?

Did you marry him? Or make a separate PR agreement or have it court ordered?

If the answer to these are no then he does not have PR the changes came into force in December 2003 not before.

chesterberry Tue 02-Jul-13 20:19:29

Thank you to everybody who has given me advice. I just have another question about registering the baby, if you don't mind. Lots of people have said not to give baby my ex-partner's surname and I am just wondering how the surname works when I register the birth.

If my ex-partner comes with me to register the birth will the baby automatically be given his surname? Or when I register the baby's name does that include the surname? Will it be easy to give the baby my surname, even if my ex-partner does come with me to register the birth?

I definitely do not want my baby to have his surname, even if he does a complete turn-around between now and the birth and decides to start being a father I know that it might not last and I don't want to have my baby stuck with the surname of a man s/he doesn't know in five years time, so am just wondering what I have to do to make sure s/he has my surname. Thanks in advance smile

IneedAsockamnesty Tue 02-Jul-13 20:31:06

You have to tell the registrar the baby's full name and that is your choice up to the exact time that he puts his name down he has no legal right to do anything so before that point its your choice.

If you want you can give the baby what ever surname you wish even if it is a made up one you just have to tell the registrar what name you want.

But if he does come with you and you have no prior agreement about the surname then expect him to kick off at you. Controlling types tend to get quite arsey about the surname

chesterberry Tue 02-Jul-13 20:45:35

Oh, I didn't realise I could give a made up name! Not that I would, but interesting to know.

I am a bit worried that if he comes he will assume that I will be giving the baby his surname and will kick off so probably a good idea to tell him the baby's full name (including my surname) before he comes. To be honest I think he may have larger objections to the first name names I have in mind as I doubt they are names he would have agreed on, but I guess that's tough and choosing the name is a privilege he gave up when he walked out. I am still hoping he won't come though and am beginning to lean towards not telling him the time and date I am registering unless he specifically asks to try and avoid that situation.

Snazzywaitingforsummer Tue 02-Jul-13 20:46:03

You can choose whatever name you want to give the child as a surname. Just do not agree to using his name. Remember, if there was some miraculous reunion later on and you then wanted the child to have his name, you could change it or double-barrel. However, if you give the child his name, I think you'd need his permission to change it later - so I really wouldn't put yourself in that position.

Given that you're not married, he can't register the birth himself. It would have to be either only you, as the bio mother, or both of you. So if he did come but then kicked off about the name you are holding all the cards. Either he agrees to it, or he leaves and you register the baby by yourself and with your name.

Snazzywaitingforsummer Tue 02-Jul-13 20:48:03

I'd have to say, it will all be a lot easier in so many ways if he doesn't come along. And I don't think he has earned the right to.

chickenliversfortea Tue 02-Jul-13 20:48:07

You can't assume anything about the future. My ex went from insisting on an abortion to complete denial that he had fathered a child.

In the end that was made me involve the CSA. I wasn't prepared for the twat to get out of fatherhood by pretending he didn't know he had a child. I was also fed up of the assumption that I was lying. We did a DNA and he pays a tiny amount and still isn't interested. And this way we all know the truth and where we stand and the lack of interest from him and his family is now on his shoulders.

Inertia Wed 03-Jul-13 06:57:02

You don't have to tell him when and where you intend to register the birth even if he asks. Given his threats of violence towards you and thr baby, you should really strongly consider contacting him through official channels only.

In your shoes I would definitely give the baby whichever names you like. Ex lost naming rights the day he threatened to kill the baby. You really need to stop considering how you might accommodate Ex's wishes and put the baby and you first

poshfrock Wed 03-Jul-13 07:30:29

I agree with everything that has been said so far but I would just add one more comment which you may wish to consider.
I am a probate lawyer and currently dealing with a case at work where a man has died without a will. His sole beneficiary is his very young daughter but he is not named on the birth certificate as her father. If his surviving family decide to challenge her parentage then she could lose everything that she stands to inherit(house, cash etc). The only way to prove he was her father is a DNA test, which is a bit difficult as he has been cremated.

I know this is probably not a massive consideration for you but I thought I would just make you aware.

Don't give any information out to him. He doesn't deserve to even know where you are let alone have his child named after him!

Keep the date, time, place & surname choice to yourself. He gave up his rights long ago.

Morloth Wed 03-Jul-13 07:47:35

Don't give him anything.

He threatened you with violence and the baby with death. So fuck him frankly.

Just have your baby, give the baby your name. He can do whatever he feels necessary, let him do the leg work.

If you feel the need for maintenance then by all means apply, but I think in the circumstances you describe I would just ditch him.

Your baby can know who he is and it sounds like they can have some sort of relationship with their grandmother on that side.

If down the line he decides he wants to be involved then let him jump through all the hoops.

You have no obligation to him whatsoever, only to your child and in this case you can meet that obligation by telling them who their bio-father is.

Being a parent means responsibilities not rights.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 03-Jul-13 08:10:34

You do know that if he shows up to the appointment your causing yourself lots of drama if you then decide he shouldn't be named on it don't you?

You have no obligation moral or otherwise to let him know about the appointment if he asks you don't have to tell him nor do you have to agree with him.

If he wishes to be named and you feel there are valid reasons why he shouldn't be its his obligation to resolve it,if he cannot obtain your agreement then its down to him to go to court and argue his case with a judge. And no matter what he says his behaviour gives you valid reasons.

I wouldn't tell him nor would I talk about it to his mother

ninani Wed 03-Jul-13 10:30:15

If OP claims CSA won't it make it easier for her ex to claim parental rights? Knowing what he is like is it worth it? <clueless>

fedupofnamechanging Wed 03-Jul-13 10:48:18

Do yourself a huge favour and don't tell him anything until your baby is born and registered. Definitely give the baby your own last name - don't hand away all your rights to someone who will use them to control you.

And be careful of his mum - she may well be lovely, but in the end, he is her son and when push comes to shove, she will put him above you. She is being supportive, not only because she is ashamed of his behaviour, but also because she knows you hold all the power here. The only person who doesn't seem to know that is you.

I honestly also think you should lose the 'friend' who seems overly preoccupied with your ex's 'rights.' Harsh as it is, sometimes people do have to pick sides - this person is not on yours.

Remember, your baby is relying on you 100% to do the right thing by them - that includes not saddling them with a loser of a father who can scupper your plans when you genuinely have the best interests of your child in mind. He doesn't and you need to protect your baby from him, to some extent.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 03-Jul-13 19:20:39


I'm pretty sure it makes no difference at all unless she's going to attempt to claim he's not the dad.

But it may be worth a quick call to somewhere like rights of women (free legal advice line) to double check but last time I checked it didn't make a jot of difference.

Also if he goes to court to do so he has to have the get up and go to be bothered firstly to get legal advice then to stress about it do the paperwork if he self represents or reconsult if he doesn't. Then theres costs as legal aid for family law no longer exists ( unless you are a victim of provable domestic abuse or SS are trying to remove children)

So your talking a few grand and a fair bit of time. Most blokes who do the whole walking away from pregnant gf saying they want nothing to do with the baby wouldn't bother beyond a half arsed call to cab (where they will be told legal aid no longer exists and that its not a slam dunk certainty) and it will even take them about 6 weeks just to get through to the cab as the lines are manic so they give up.

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