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#1 of 7 Old 06-12-2006, 12:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi,

I am new to this site. I am single and my boyfriend has 2 kids that we are raising together. they are 7 and 9. I was wondering how you become legal gaurdian. With his schedule I am pretty much primary care giver to the girls. Their mom live in PA and we are in CA and he works alot so I do the volunteering the school stuff basically. Because we aren't married yet the school sometimes won't talk to me about things going on and when I was talking to our first grade teacher she said that even if we get married she isn't sure if that makes me a legal gaurdian. Do you have any advice regarding this. I am fortunate that the girls current teachers and the office crew talk to me without issue, but its an inconvenience when you can't technically sign permission slips and etc.

appreciate any advice.

thanks
shelby
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#2 of 7 Old 06-12-2006, 12:56 PM
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well i dont know the laws on this , but I'll give you my experience. I am married to my husband and i have 3 step sons. We share the same last name so maybe it is just a given, but I sign everything - permission slips, registration forms, lunch applications - you name it. I have been open about being the step mom to people in the school, sometimes teachers will ask background or history and i have to explain that i havent been there all 14 yrs, etc..and this has never caused any problem? I think maybe because you are not married and dont share the last name maybe that is why the teacher was on eggshells, but once you are?? Should be fine - despite what that teacher said??
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#3 of 7 Old 06-12-2006, 06:04 PM
 
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Your partner can give you power of attny to deal with school in his name.

However I have to ask you how sure you are that you will continue to be in these kid's lives until you die. I ask because kids in divorce have already experience a lot of loss, if you are not commited enought for marriage to their father perhaps you out to step back a bit and try to be more of a babysitter and less of a stepmom. If you are that commited and just choose not to be legally married then nevermind.

I just see folks sort of "slide" into a very involved role with kids when their relationship with the child's parent isn't that strong. In the end they leave the child's life causeing yet more pain.

If you were married and you divorced you would have little to no legal rights to the girls even though you might have been their primary care giver for years...as a girlfriend you have less than that. Something to consider- for their sake.
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#4 of 7 Old 06-12-2006, 07:07 PM
 
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No idea...but I'm subbing, so if somebody knows, I can find out, too! I've been married to DH for 6 years and it's a PITA to always wait for DH to handle all those little things (like permission slips!).

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#5 of 7 Old 06-14-2006, 09:21 AM
 
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You need to have your dh send a signed statement to the office that gives you explicit right to do a.)....b.).....c.).....and then it shouldn't be a problem for most any school. Since he is the legal guardian and custodian he has the right to appoint you to do whatever he deems appropriate in the care for the children. They can keep it on file. So the note should state that you have the right to discuss all personal information regarding the girls and that you have the right to sign permission slips and to make all authorizations requiring a parent/guardian signature etc. Here all you have to do to get guardianship is go to the court house and fill out a paper. It doesn't give you custody, it just establishes you as a "legal guardian" which gives you the right to make decisions.
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#6 of 7 Old 06-14-2006, 11:20 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Cool thank you all for the information. I really appreciate it.

Responding to the one that told me to think about what I am doing. I love my boyfriend and his girls more then anything and they are my family and I have no intentions of ever leaving him. I told him if he ever decided to leave me we would have to come up with an arrangement so I could still see the kids. He isn't ready for marriage after 2failed ones and 1 failed attempt he is more cautious. I am just giving him the time he needs because even though I want marriage I don't want to force him into anything. We are taking baby steps at this point we live together and I am happy with that. As for the girls they have a terrible mother that only gives them bad examples to live by and lives 3000 miles away and only calls when she wants something and when the girls call her to tell her about something she blows them off completely. I try really hard to give them a good stable environment that promotes postivity and openess to talk about anything including there mother. I understand what you are saying but i would never of taken things to where they are without considering everything for the sake of the girls first.
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#7 of 7 Old 06-14-2006, 11:55 AM
 
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Check the laws where you live. In the UK, it is possible for a stepparent to have parental responsibility for a child- this is usually awarded via a residency order.Otherwise, look at a power of attorney.

Helen mum to five and mistress of mess and mayhem, making merry and mischief til the sun goes down.
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