A non-custodial California parent is someone who does not have physical custody of their children. Under some circumstances, however, a non-custodial parent still has legal custody. Unfortunately, the image associated with a divorced parent who is not living with their children is sometimes clouded by lingering myths about this type of relationship.
For instance, it’s sometimes assumed non-custodial parents are deadbeats because non-paying child support spouses are often parents without physical custody of their kids. Even so, there are plenty of responsible and caring non-custodial parents who routinely meet their monthly payment obligations. Also, it’s true that most parents without physical custody are men, but courts today are more inclined to grant dads shared or sole physical custody.
Another common myth is that non-custodial parents aren’t involved. Sure, this happens sometimes, but many parents make the most of what time they do get. Often, non-custodial parents stay connected via email and text between visits. In addition, because custodial parents generally take care of such things as food, shelter and medical care, it’s sometimes assumed that non-custodial parents aren’t true parents. However, single moms and dads without physical custody often work very hard to make sure their kids’ needs are met during scheduled visits throughout the year. One other myth is that parents opt not to fight for physical custody to get out of being involved. This is sometimes true, but other times, the decision is made voluntarily so that a child’s life isn’t disrupted.
In some situations, a bitter relationship with an ex affects visitation schedules or custody arrangements. If this is the case, a family law attorney may attempt to mediate and reach a mutually acceptable resolution. Should this not be possible, an attorney may turn to the court for intervention. A post-divorce modification involving custody might also be necessary if circumstances for one or both parents significantly change.