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Kinship Caregivers - Non-Legal Custodian Affidavit

What is a Non-Legal Custodian Affidavit?

It is an affidavit signed by the person having non-legal custody of a child but having physical custody of the child. You cannot have any type of legal custody and you cannot be a foster parent of a child in state 's custody . The child must be under 18 years old and living with the person. It gives the authority to make certain limited decisions for the child in regards to health care and school. It does not give you legal custody of the child.

When should it be used?

If a child is living in your home who is not in your legal custody and the parent is unavailable for any reason, this form may be of assista nce. It is best intended to meet short-term situational needs, as it is very limited . It may be used, for exam ple, when a parent is hospitalized and the child who needs to be enrolled in school is staying with you.

How is it done?

It requires the form set forth in the law and the signature of the person with whom the child is living.

How long does it last? When does it expire?

The parent can override any decisions you make using this form as long as the parent's decision does not harm the child. The longest the signed form is good for is one year from the date it is signed. If the child is no longer living with you, you can no longer use this form and you must notify anyone you have given it to.

Do both parents have to sign?

Neither parent has to sign. Only the person with whom the child is living and is providing care of the child signs the affidavit.

What can the person who has a Non-Legal Custodian Affidavit do for the child?

The person can only make limited decisions for the child . Those are decisions in regards to school and health care. You should be aware that many school systems will not accept this form for enrollment in school. Be sure to check with your local school system to find out what documents you need.

Can the person who has a Non-Legal Custodian Affidavit prevent the parents from visiting or removing the child from their home?

No, parents still have the right and the obligation to communicate with the child . Visitation and physical custody of the child can only be limited by a court.

Do the parents still have the obligation to support the child?

Yes, parents still have the obligation to support the child. A voluntary arrangement with the parents may be the best and least contentious way to provide needed support for the child. If this is not possible, you should contact the local Support Enforcement Office for guidance on how to establish initial child support benefits, having established support payments transferred to you, or you may hire an attorney to file directly in your parish district or juvenile court.

Can I apply for benefits for the child or have the benefits the child receives put in my name?

No, this only authorizes you to make education and medical decisions. It does not allow you to apply for health care coverage through your insurance company.

Is there a form for a Non-Legal Custodian Affidavit?

Yes. The law about a Non-Legal Custodian Affidavit includes a form found in Louisiana Revised Statute 9:975. For the form see http://www.legis.la.gov/Legis/Law.aspx?d=108363.