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Posted By Kevin L. Cadora, Esq.

There is a misconception in California that since a child is not biologically related to someone, that person will not be responsible for the payment of child support. Nothing could be farther from the truth based upon the principal of Parent by Estoppel, which essentially says that if a person holds a non-biological child out to be their own child and it would be in that child’s best interest to receive child support from that unrelated person, that person could be ordered to pay child support.

A good example of this is when parties separate and there are step-children involved and the other biological parent of the children is absent from the children’s lives for whatever reason. In such a situation, the step-parent could be ordered to pay child support for their step-children they hold out as their own. The flip side of that coin is that the step-parent MAY also have rights to visitation of the children. That, however, is an extremely complex topic for another day since the US Supreme Court has chimed in regarding third party visitation with children contrary to the biological parent’s 14th Amendment Rights to rear their own children as they see fit.

Contact Fair Cadora today to discuss your family law case with one of our experienced family law attorneys.  

Posted By Kevin L. Cadora, Esq.

Another hot topic button in family law is whether a parent can lawfully record a conversation between the parent and the child without the knowledge and/or consent of the child or the other parent. The answer is it depends. A communication between a parent and child is likely NOT a confidential communication as defined by California Penal Code Section 632 because parents routinely discuss conversations between themselves and their children with the other parent, healthcare professionals and educators whereby a child has no reasonable expectation of privacy when speaking to their parents.

However, what happens when the child tells the parent that they want the conversation to be kept secret? A child’s request that a conversation be kept secret is a clear indication of the child’s desire that the conversation be confined to just that parent and the child whereby the communication becomes confidential and the recordation of such a conversation and introduction of the recording into court is probably prohibited and maybe illegal. Always consult a competent family law attorney before introducing any recording into court because not only could the recording be excluded, the recording parent could be charged with a misdemeanor pursuant to California Penal Code Section 632.

To discuss the issue of recording your children, child custody or child support, contact Fair Cadora today to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced family law attorneys.  

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