Quoting £egendary £ex:" <blockquote><b>Quoting Platypus:</b>" I always thought if you were a single mother ... [snip!] ... If you put his name on the birth certificate, he can legally keep the baby if there is no order in place. "
I just double checked the laws for Massachusetts http://www.masslegalhelp.org/children-and-families/child-custody-and-visitation#4
"When the parents are not married
to each other, the mother has sole legal and physical custody unless and until a court orders otherwise. This is so even if the father has formally acknowledged paternity."
OP, I would definitely check the laws for your state, and contact an attorney. I think thats totally unfair how some states say thats okay.. So that basically means a deadbeat could do that, and you would have to wait to go to court.. thats insane..