If I’m 22 can I sue my father for abandonment if he paid child supportbut chose not to have me in his life?

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If I’m 22 can I sue my father for abandonment if he paid child supportbut chose not to have me in his life?

When I was 11 my mother took him to court and he paid back child support and support up until I was 18 but chose not to take part of my life. Do I have abandonment grounds? He owns his own company and is a very wealthy man, I’ve tried to contact him twice to reach out to him but he has not replied. I do not ordinarily believe in suing but when he was 19 he also sued his father for almost a million dollars (don’t know what for).

Asked on July 15, 2011 under Family Law, Wyoming

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, there is no legal requirement for a parent to pay attention to a child or to be part of the child's life; the obligation is to provide a certain amount of financial support. (Note: sometimes abusive or neglectful parents can lose their parental rights--but that's taking the child away, so to speak. There is no way, and the law does not try to, require parents to be emotionally supportive or involved with their children.) So while it is probably worthwhile to speak with a family law attorney to confirm what your rights may be, it is likely the case that if he has paid all his financial obligations, that you do not have any claims against him. (Though if he passes away, you may be entitled to some of his estate as a son--it depeds on what, if anything, his will says, if he has one.)


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