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By default, the mother does. However, other custody arrangements can be made if the parents agree or if it is in the best interest of the child.An unmarried father must establish his paternity and arrange for a custody hearing if he wants custody.

Generally, if the parents are unmarried the mother has sole custody and control in most states until the father can establish his paternity. Remember, a child's mother can always be identified by medical records. Since the father didn't give birth and he was not legally married at the time of the birth he must establish his paternity by signing the birth certificate at the time of birth (waiving DNA testing rights) which must be done with mother's consent. If he doesn't sign the birth certificate then he must seek another way to establish his paternity and that is done through a DNA test.

A paternity test can be arranged through the court. Once paternity has been established the father can request visitations, joint custody, full custody or the court will set up a schedule of regular child support payments for the child if she is to remain in the custody of her mother.

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12y ago
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11y ago

The mother. The father have to apply for visitation and custody in court.

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Q: Who has the custody of a child if the parents aren't married in Michigan?
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