x Implications of Rape in Custody/Parental Rights | Pennsylvania Custody & Visitation Lawyer | Bucks County PA Divorce Law Firm
Karen Ann Ulmer, P.C.
Legal & Mediation Services
“Calming the Chaos, Creating Solutions”
Call for a Confidential Consultation
866-567-9029 or 215-752-6200
Practice Areas
Watch our Video

Implications of Rape in Custody/Parental Rights

Pennsylvania has some of the best protections nationwide in the instance of mothers who opt to have a child following a rape. First, there is the potential that the rights of the natural father/perpetrator of the rape can be terminated. Pursuant to 23 Pa CS 2511(a), which lays out the grounds on which a parent's rights can be involuntarily terminated, paragraph (7) provides for termination where "the parent is the father of a child conceived as a result of rape or incest." While it is a plus that the law specifically allows termination of parental rights in a rape case, a party petitioning for involuntary termination will still need someone willing to adopt the child simultaneously with the termination which may cause a dilemma.

In addition to provisions regarding involuntary termination of parental rights, rape is also expressly addressed in Pennsylvania's custody laws. Under 23 Pa CS 5329, the court is to consider criminal convictions, not just official charges, when making a custody decision. However, while the court must consider a rape charge, that doesn't mean it can't grant the father/perpetrator any custody time. Instead, the rape charge would just be one of several factors for the court to consider in determining what's in the child's best interests as is required for all custody decisions.

Click here to read more on custody.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
  • Avvo Rating
  • 10.0 Superb
  • 2014 top 100 lawyers ASLA
  • Overall Client Rating in Family Law - 4.8 out of 5.0

Office Locations

Langhorne Office
174 Middletown Boulevard
Suite 300
Langhorne, PA 19047

Toll Free: 866-567-9029
Phone: 215-752-6200
Fax: 215-752-6202
Langhorne Law Office Map

Doylestown Office
44 East Court Street
Doylestown, PA 18901

Toll Free: 866-567-9029
Phone: 215-348-3800
Fax: 215-752-6202
Doylestown Law Office Map

Norristown Office
516 DeKalb Street
2nd Floor
Norristown, PA 19401

Toll Free: 866-567-9029
Phone: 215-752-6200
Fax: 215-752-6202
Map & Directions