3 Rights And Responsibilities Of Noncustodial Parents

Posted on: 6 September 2019

Working out child custody is rarely an easy thing, and the expertise of a child custody lawyer is often needed to help facilitate the process and ensure one party's rights aren't trampled on. The noncustodial parent has rights and responsibilities, just as the custodial parent does. Here is a look at those rights and responsibilities.

Stick to Your Visitation Schedule

Most judges award ample visitation time to the noncustodial parent. In some cases, that visitation may require supervision by a third party. If you feel you were not given fair visitation or dislike the supervised visitation, a child custody lawyer may be able to help you get it changed.

Regardless, it is extremely important you stick to the terms of the current visitation schedule in place. Pick your child(ren) up and drop them off when you are scheduled to do so. If anything happens, such as you have to work late, be sure to communicate with the custodial parent. Do your best to be amicable and work it out.

And while it can be tempting to not take a child when they are sick or if you are under the weather, it is best you take the child as scheduled. After all, the custodial parent's responsibilities don't quit just because they or their child are ill.

If the custodial parent denies your visitation for any reason, be sure to record the day, time, and specifics of the interaction. Your child custody attorney may want this information.

Provide a Suitable Living Environment

Sometimes, it is impractical or financially unfeasible for the noncustodial parent — who is almost always paying child support — to maintain a large home. For example, if you have three children but only get visitation every other weekend, it may not make fiscal sense to pay for a four-bedroom home that sits empty most of the time.

However, your child(ren) should have a space that accommodates their needs while they are in your care. It's important they feel comfortable in your living space and that the space meets their basic needs.

Keep Track of the Money You Spend

If the courts have not yet determined the amount of child support you are required to pay or you and the other party have an informal arrangement rather than an official order, it is important you keep track of the money you give to the custodial parent.

Do not give cash as there will be no legal record of the transaction. Instead, pay by check or money order. If you do have a legal order, pay it. If you pay over and above what you are required to or purchase additional things the children need, be sure to keep receipts.