Can you file for custody before a child is born?

The short answer is no. You cannot file for child custody before a child is born because an unborn child is neither a person nor property under Michigan law.  (See: Markiewicz v. Markiewicz)


Markiewicz v. Markewicz

If your interested in what the Court in Markiewicz decided, the court decided that in a fight over a frozen embryo, the court must take into consideration both contractual obligations with the implications of imposing unwanted parenthood on a party.

There is a legal concept called “standing” which is simply defined as the right to bring a lawsuit. Under Michigan law, a fetus is not yet a person, rather a potential life. Therefore, a party does not have standing to sue under Michigan’s child custody act until a child is born. The appropriate time to bring a child custody action under Michigan law is after a child is born.

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