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Being proactive with parental rights

California parents affected by divorce may find that the drama and stress of dealing with family-related legal matters can be overwhelming. However, it is important to understand that ignoring papers that have been served related to visitation or child support could result in a default judgment that leads to the approval of the other party's requests. An individual who receives such legal paperwork might not even understand the full significance of the material, which makes it important to obtain help as quickly as possible.

Issues that could result in a parent's failure to respond in a timely manner to legal materials could range from stress about the nature of the papers to a lack of funds for obtaining legal counsel. However, there are organizations that offer support through workshops and other avenues for those who might not understand how to respond to legal issues brought by another parent. It is important to avoid engaging in confrontational activity.

It is important for a divorced parent to keep good records of involvement with a child, documenting the times and dates of dropping off and picking up for visitation. It is also wise to keep copies of checks or money orders used to make support payments to counter any claims of nonpayment. When parents keep thorough records and responds promptly to legal paperwork, their side of the situation tends to receive appropriate attention.

A parent facing difficulties in dealing with a visitation schedule or support order might avoid serious legal problems or challenges from the other parent by contacting an attorney promptly to evaluate the options. An attorney could help in filing for an order modification.

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