I became pregnant 1999 out of wedlock at the age of 21. My daughter’s father and I were together until she was almost 6 years old (2005) and then separated due to an affair on his part. When he left us and started a new life in the US (2006), he financially supported our daughter by sending money to his parents. Our verbal arrangement was (since I worked in the call center industry) for his parents to take care of her during the week so they could also assist her with her studies, and then she would be with me during the weekends and holidays. If my mom hadn’t passed away during the same year that my daughter’s father and I separated, the arrangement would have been that my daughter could have lived permanently with us (and my parent’s side).
I was the breadwinner for my family (my father, two brothers, and Grandmother). I took care of most everything financial: apartment rent, food and utilities) so my only contribution for my daughter’s care was just miscellaneous needs and wants, such as clothes, food, etc.
In 2009, I married an American and we decided to petition for her to come to the US. Her father did not approve. I even flew to California, the state where he lived, in order to discuss our daughter and her living situation but he refused to cooperate. He said that he would be the one to take care of petitioning her and bringing her into the US. Although it seemed impossible (I found out thru our common friend that he only had a Student/OPT Visa), I gave him the benefit of the doubt in hopes that our daughter would be with one of us in the US. This would also allow both of us more convenient and practical access to our daughter.
In early December 2011, he and his family (his wife and 4 month old daughter) returned to the Philippines (after not seeing our daughter for 5 straight years) and announced he would be staying there permanently.
I’ve expressed the intention to take responsibility for my daughter and I want her to be with me in the US. However, I may not be ready financially because I don’t have a job yet.
- Is being married to an American who has a stable job enough? Will I be able to win custody of my daughter?
- Will a lack of employment hurt my case? What are my chances of gaining physical custody of my daughter?
Her father did sign her Birth Certificate, but we never married. My daughter has her father’s surname. Our daughter is staying with his parents (father side) but he takes full financial responsibility to her. PLEASE HELP. I need my daughter back. Thank you so much. Your assistance is greatly appreciated.