A good piece of advice to unmarried parents is to indicate both names in the birth certificate. Adding the father’s name to the birth certificate will assist in establishing parentage or paternal rights, with most states. Some couples do not want to marry. Even if they have children or live in the same house, the couple may refuse to marry. After all, marriage is complicated. However, not being married to your loved one comes with other challenges.

Here below are some tips for unmarried parents who intend to bring up kids together…

1. Select a Favorite Last Name

Almost any name can appear on the birth certificate of a child in many states. This involves first, middle and last names. The child doesn’t have to take either of the parents but can choose one or another. Alternatively, you can use a hyphen between the two names. In some cases, even the parents grant one of their last names as a middle name and another parent’s surname is given to them.
In case you need a small extra time to make your mind, the process of changing birth certificate can be done later. You can implement this through your state’s Bureau of Vital Statistics. It is important to mention that this may be a challenging process. In most cases, the state will demand a court order for you to rename your child or even amend a spelling of name wrongly put. However, this can be frustrating and time-consuming. So, mutually select the favorite last name to avoid hazards.

2. Prioritize Your Children

The majority of mental health and child development people agree that divorce benefits from amicable splitting up. This also applies when unmarried parents separate. If it appears to be challenging getting along with these post-breakup feelings, focus on raising your children’s happiness. If you can find a way to work together on issues, focus forward and coexist civilly with the other parent then in time your children will be thankful. After it is all said and done, if you have a secure parenting plan then you will be able to know that your decision was correct.

3.Claiming Children on Tax Forms

In case of unmarried parents, only one parent will be able to claim the children as dependents in their taxes. Both unmarried parents are eligible for the exemption so long as they do in fact support that child.

Generally, it is determined that the best parent to claim for a child should be depending on which of these parents has higher income. A larger tax reduction will be given to the parent with greater income. The parents may decide to split the tax return even though only one parent receives it.
If they do not agree, parents may complete a form (Form 8332) with the IRS to claim their child for exemption on taxes. If you are unsure about your taxes, reach out to a tax expert or lawyer for guidance through the process.

4. A Non-Parent Taking on the Live in Role of a Parent

Often, problems arise when a nonparent who lives with the child acts as that child’s parent in terms of making some decisions. The legality of this nonparent’s authority to do this depends on several factors:
Third parties who have not received legal custody or guardianship will never be allowed to make decisions regarding education and health care in the place of a parent. Not even a step parent would enjoy such powers.
Because schools are legally required for the custody and safety of the children, they can only take signatures and permission slip from parent’s guardians. If an unmarried person lives with a legal parent, he or she does not count as their guardian.
In certain cases, nonparents may be allowed to collect children from school if a legal parent of that child informs the school.
Find out from your child’s school what steps are needed for a nonparent to be allowed into making some decisions.

Unmarried Parents Raising Children Together? Legal Help

If you do not get the answers or satisfactions after reading these guidelines for unmarried parents, there is a possibility that you have to take professional assistance. The first step is to hire professional legal services because you need a voice in the matter.
Different types of lawyers are in a position to offer very helpful legal information on parental rights and issues concerning child custody pertaining physical or sole custodianship. They can assist you in establishing a child custody arrangement or parenting plan. Until your final custody order comes, attorneys will assist you with the representation in family court.
To learn more, seek a Family Law Attorney in Tampa, FL near you.