Based on the limited facts you have described, it seems best to file a petition for custody.
It is possible the court could order some amount of limited visitation even though the father is currently serving time in a prison in Monroe County, New York. However, the father would need to show up, argue strongly in favor of it, and put forth facts that show that visitation is in the child’s best interest.
The Monroe County Family Court will, however, consider that he has played no role in the child’s life for 13 years, he is currently in jail, and he has failed to support the child in any meaningful way. Given these factors, it seems unlikely that the court would award any amount of substantial visitation.
Depending on a number of other factors, the court could also find that the father is not “fit” and therefore he could be stripped of his parental rights. In the petition, it is important to clearly state that the father has not played any role in the child’s life and has failed to support him. All off these factors will be considered and even the argument that he has effectively abandoned his parental rights by failing to involve himself in the child’s life. Most importantly, however, you want to show that awarding you full custody and preventing him access to the child is in the child’s best interest. List every fact that you can think of to make this case.
If you have additional questions or concerns, contact a Monroe County Family Law Lawyer Today.