“My friend received this in email form today from her ex. (attached at bottom)
What rights does an ex boyfriend have, as regards to knowledge of a suspected pregnancy/abortion? Let me clarify. My friend and her boyfriend were together 5 months, and she found out she was pregnant. The ex partner suffered from an abusive personality disorder, being very controlling, manipulative and jealous, among many other traits.
She decided never to let him back in her life, and due to the safety and wellbeing of herself and her existing 2 children, aborted the unborn baby 8 weeks into the pregnancy. He was into mind games and pretended to drive 400 miles to be in her town to scare her (he returned to live with his parents 400 miles away after she told him to get out). That night, she slept with a knife under her pillow and is in the process of getting her locks changed as she is unsure what he is capable of.
The ex partner saw early pregnancy tests to indicate a pregnancy, but she never clarified a pregnancy. She took the line that her period arrived 2 days later and that the tests were inaccurate. She has told him MANY TIMES that she is not pregnant. He has contacted her pastor, her parents, her sister, and her ex husband with the knowledge that he believes she is carrying his baby and seeking “prayer”. This is harassment surely?
He has now sent her a lawyer’s letter (she suspects this is fake) to say he has rights to a baby (she has told him there IS no pregnancy, which is the truth, although she decided never to tell him there once WAS and she terminated it). How should she handle this without being drawn into a long and drawn out battle which is feeding his behavioural patterns and pulling her deeper into the web of his deceit. This is the lawyer’s letter she received which is to follow in the post. It arrived today by email:
NAME OF EX PARTNER
We have been consulted by EX PARTNER who has informed us of his previous relationship with you. HE states the relationship recently ended although, for his part it was, and still is hoped, that you and he could reconcile your differences. This would now seem unlikely.
We are further told by our client that you are pregnant by him. He therefore hopes to ensure that on the birth he will in a position to take up his role as father, even if regrettably you and he are not to be together. In advance he seeks your acknowledgement that he will be afforded his various rights, including contact with the child. This is notwithstanding our advising our client that his legal rights in the unborn child are, to say the least, extremely limited. This situation has been confirmed in practically every case where a father has taken the matter to Court, the overall effect is that a father must wait until the birth of a child. This would of course not prohibit a father taking the matter to Court if he felt circumstances compelled this. While he is therefore under no illusions here, nevertheless he understandably wishes to be sure that on birth he will then be able to be involved, always preferably with your approval.
Please confirm that you will accede to his wishes, and of course he assures you he only has the best wishes of yourself and the child in mind. If you have any concerns, you may be advised to seek separate legal advice, but in any event we await a response, either from your Solicitors or from yourself.”
Why would a lawyer send this when the client has been told MANY times there is no baby?”
I can think of no legal grounds under these circumstances for rights to a child that does not exist. Even though you believe the letter to be a fake (did you do a search of the lawyer’s name? did you call the number on the letterhead?), you might want to reply to it saying that there is no child. Additionally, you might mention that you are concerned about a course of conduct from EX PARTNER that feels like harrassment, and that you would really appreciate it if ATTORNEY could kindly ask his client to stop contacting you, your pastor, your friends, relatives, etc. Right now, there do not seem to be enough facts to get a restraining order, but it does not hurt you to build a paper trail. You may want to consult an attorney on that.
The “why” a lawyer might send something like this is because if you were carrying a child that was ATTORNEY’s client’s child, then EX PARTNER _would_ have both legal rights and obligations vis a vis this child. This is true whether or not you and EX PARTNER had any chance of a continued dating relationship or reconciliation. Additionally, ATTORNEY is building a paper trail of EX PARTNER’s efforts to involve himself with the potential child, should the little white lie that you were never pregnant turn out to be the really big lie that you really are pregnant and actually carrying the child to term. The fact that EX saw a positive pregnancy test helps to understand the abundance of caution.