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Unregistered 01-11-2018 06:19 AM

DCPs, Divorce and Court
 
I'm in Virginia. One set of parents/clients are getting divorced and the DCM just informed me I will likely have to go to court. What....really?? I've never had divorcing parents tell me that before and I do NOT want to get involved in their crap. There hasn't been anything I have witnessed other than normal separation/divorce bitching and complaining about each other. No neglect, abuse, ect.

As a provider, can I be compelled to show up in court for their divorce proceedings?

Cat Herder 01-11-2018 06:31 AM

Only with a court order. ;) Not highly likely.

I would stop them both from discussing the divorce or other parent with you. I hope none of those discussions were in front of their kids. :eek:

MomBoss 01-11-2018 06:36 AM

I dont feel like you would have to. Maybe if there was a subpoena. But i dont see why you would need to go, what could you even help with? If so, they should pay for your day your missing work and having to close daycare. That would be about $300 for me.

LysesKids 01-11-2018 06:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Unregistered (Post 661154)
I'm in Virginia. One set of parents/clients are getting divorced and the DCM just informed me I will likely have to go to court. What....really?? I've never had divorcing parents tell me that before and I do NOT want to get involved in their crap. There hasn't been anything I have witnessed other than normal separation/divorce bitching and complaining about each other. No neglect, abuse, ect.

As a provider, can I be compelled to show up in court for their divorce proceedings?

I have a policy for this... I got pulled into a sticky situation years ago & never want to repeat it. I tell parents if they drag me into court they lose all services immediately; I don't have time for their garbage, much less it affects other families if I have to close & I lose $$... they want to pay my full wages for a day in court?

Unregistered 01-11-2018 07:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MomBoss (Post 661157)
I dont feel like you would have to. Maybe if there was a subpoena. But i dont see why you would need to go, what could you even help with? If so, they should pay for your day your missing work and having to close daycare. That would be about $300 for me.

Same for me about $300 if I closed but I don't even want to get involved. Ridiculous.

Blackcat31 01-11-2018 07:25 AM

The following is a letter I use for all separating, divorcing or "divided" families.

Feel free to copy, print and/or edit the letter as needed. Hope it's helpful :)

Dear Families,

Over the years I have noticed my role as child care provider can often create the impression that we are extended family. Because your child's welfare is so important, this care and nurturing can create an intimacy between us that makes us feel more like family than business partners. As a home daycare provider, I strive to foster this sense of community, and to provide the closeness you will not find in a child care center.

However, there does need to be well defined boundaries in certain areas. Some of you are currently in the process of redefining your families, and are struggling with court orders, custody issues, and feelings of estrangement. It is imperative I remind all of you that I must remain a neutral third party. As your child's advocate, their needs are my sole priority. Please keep in mind, this doesn't mean that I am unaware or unaffected by the turmoil you face; I am sorry for your pain and I do mourn the loss of your child's family as they have known it. Still, I can't let any feelings I have for you interfere with my role in providing your child a safe, neutral environment where they can express their own feelings of sadness or fear. In consideration of this, here is a list of some of the things you need to remember should you wish to keep you child enrolled at (name of child care facility):

1. My home is a safe haven for them; please refrain from expressing your sadness or frustration about your child's other parent (and perhaps their new significant other) within their presence. Your child is extremely perceptive and already knows how you feel; my home is one place they should be able to escape this tension.

2. Please provide me with any copies of legal documents I need regarding the custody or care arrangements for your child. Keep in mind that in the absence of any court documents, I cannot legally keep a child from his or her parent, and will not agree to any such arrangement.

3. Develop a well thought out plan for pick-up and drop-off. Do NOT make my driveway a place of confrontation. If you need to do a "switch" where the child moves from one parent's care to another during the course of the week, choose someplace else to do so.

4. Do NOT put me in the middle of any issues you have regarding child support payment or the payment for my services. Work out a plan for who is responsible to pay for your child's care and do so promptly and courteously. I know money is a primary point of contention in many separations -- do NOT make me ask for payment for my services or you will find yourself looking for a new child care provider.

5. Do not request that I do anything for you other than the normal array of service you have received in the past. I will NOT document anything other than legitimately suspected mistreatment, so don't ask me to spend time evaluating your ex-spouse's parenting skills or capability as a parent. If the court feels they need my opinion, they will provide me with a list of written questions I will answer to the best of my ability. I operate an honest business and consider my integrity and trust two hallmarks of my home.

6. I do not participate in supervised visitation. My home is a "Home away from home" for many children and I need to consider the welfare of ALL my families when making decisions. I am a child care provider -- not a mediator or evaluator.

In summary, please minimize to the greatest degree possible, any disruption to your child's regular day at my home. Separation of a family is a big issue to young children, and my home may be the place of stability where they can work through their emotions and confusion.

If you have questions, please call me at 555-555-5555

Leigh 01-11-2018 10:19 AM

I had a parent ask me recently if I could help with a custody matter. I told him that I won't go to court. I feel that Mom is a good mom who makes bad choices. I am 100% on Dad's side that Dad needs primary custody to keep the child safe and secure, and provide stability. Dad doesn't want to keep Mom away from the child, only to be able to make major decisions regarding the child and to ensure that Mom can't put him in a hazardous situation.

I told him not to ask me to go to court, that he doesn't need me, anyway (Mom's family is on Dad's side, too). I told him to feel free to subpoena my records, but that I won't provide them without a court order. I warned him that a subpoena for me would not be in his best interests.

Country Kids 01-12-2018 10:46 AM

I know a provider that was on the stand for 2.5 hours on a case with some parents.

I don't think the parents discussed anything with her and she found out through receiving the subpena.

You can always say no but might still not stop them from sending you a subpena.

Unregistered 01-17-2018 01:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Blackcat31 (Post 661162)
The following is a letter I use for all separating, divorcing or "divided" families.

Feel free to copy, print and/or edit the letter as needed. Hope it's helpful :)

Dear Families,

Over the years I have noticed my role as child care provider can often create the impression that we are extended family. Because your child's welfare is so important, this care and nurturing can create an intimacy between us that makes us feel more like family than business partners. As a home daycare provider, I strive to foster this sense of community, and to provide the closeness you will not find in a child care center.

However, there does need to be well defined boundaries in certain areas. Some of you are currently in the process of redefining your families, and are struggling with court orders, custody issues, and feelings of estrangement. It is imperative I remind all of you that I must remain a neutral third party. As your child's advocate, their needs are my sole priority. Please keep in mind, this doesn't mean that I am unaware or unaffected by the turmoil you face; I am sorry for your pain and I do mourn the loss of your child's family as they have known it. Still, I can't let any feelings I have for you interfere with my role in providing your child a safe, neutral environment where they can express their own feelings of sadness or fear. In consideration of this, here is a list of some of the things you need to remember should you wish to keep you child enrolled at (name of child care facility):

1. My home is a safe haven for them; please refrain from expressing your sadness or frustration about your child's other parent (and perhaps their new significant other) within their presence. Your child is extremely perceptive and already knows how you feel; my home is one place they should be able to escape this tension.

2. Please provide me with any copies of legal documents I need regarding the custody or care arrangements for your child. Keep in mind that in the absence of any court documents, I cannot legally keep a child from his or her parent, and will not agree to any such arrangement.

3. Develop a well thought out plan for pick-up and drop-off. Do NOT make my driveway a place of confrontation. If you need to do a "switch" where the child moves from one parent's care to another during the course of the week, choose someplace else to do so.

4. Do NOT put me in the middle of any issues you have regarding child support payment or the payment for my services. Work out a plan for who is responsible to pay for your child's care and do so promptly and courteously. I know money is a primary point of contention in many separations -- do NOT make me ask for payment for my services or you will find yourself looking for a new child care provider.

5. Do not request that I do anything for you other than the normal array of service you have received in the past. I will NOT document anything other than legitimately suspected mistreatment, so don't ask me to spend time evaluating your ex-spouse's parenting skills or capability as a parent. If the court feels they need my opinion, they will provide me with a list of written questions I will answer to the best of my ability. I operate an honest business and consider my integrity and trust two hallmarks of my home.

6. I do not participate in supervised visitation. My home is a "Home away from home" for many children and I need to consider the welfare of ALL my families when making decisions. I am a child care provider -- not a mediator or evaluator.

In summary, please minimize to the greatest degree possible, any disruption to your child's regular day at my home. Separation of a family is a big issue to young children, and my home may be the place of stability where they can work through their emotions and confusion.

If you have questions, please call me at 555-555-5555

Thanks for the letter, it's a very good idea.

Unregistered 01-17-2018 01:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Country Kids (Post 661399)
I know a provider that was on the stand for 2.5 hours on a case with some parents.

I don't think the parents discussed anything with her and she found out through receiving the subpena.

You can always say no but might still not stop them from sending you a subpena.

Ouch. If that were to happen I would certainly charge them a for shutting down my business for court.

KSDC 01-18-2018 08:35 PM

The only time I had this type of situation, an officer of the court came and interviewed me at my home. She took my testimony(?), notarized it, and then it was entered into evidence.
I wasn't giving any evidence on parenting. I was speaking to who paid the bills. Who dropped/picked up. Who was on the paperwork. Basically the dad was NEVER involved in any way with my daycare. (To my knowledge, the child had never even met the dad. But, that wasn't in my purview, so I didn't speak to it.) That was all they needed from me. Thankfully, I did not get a subpoena.

MarinaVanessa 01-19-2018 11:05 AM

This has happened to me TWICE. The first time I was asked by a DCM to write an affidavit and told the DCM that all I could do was to write about what I had seen and that all I had seen was DCD was always respectful and that DCB would always get excited when he was picked up by his dad. She changed her mind and didn't ask me to write anything afterall :lol:.

The second time I was asked it was for another family and I was ready for it. I told her that if she wanted me to appear in court or to write an affidavit that I would require a subpoena and a list of questions that I would answer and that I would not answer any questions that I felt were out of my professional scope of child care provider. I never got the subpoena ;).

Unregistered 01-24-2018 01:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MarinaVanessa (Post 662178)
This has happened to me TWICE. The first time I was asked by a DCM to write an affidavit and told the DCM that all I could do was to write about what I had seen and that all I had seen was DCD was always respectful and that DCB would always get excited when he was picked up by his dad. She changed her mind and didn't ask me to write anything afterall :lol:.

The second time I was asked it was for another family and I was ready for it. I told her that if she wanted me to appear in court or to write an affidavit that I would require a subpoena and a list of questions that I would answer and that I would not answer any questions that I felt were out of my professional scope of child care provider. I never got the subpoena ;).

Both DCPs are good parents, they are just a little weird and they don't like each other much. That's all I've seen.


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