The relationship between a child and their family is governed by various provisions under the Family Code. One such provision, under Title 2, is the Authorization Agreement for Nonparent Adult Caregiver. This agreement is a pivotal tool for parents who wish to grant certain rights and responsibilities to an adult caregiver, ensuring the temporary care of their child. Here’s what you need to know.

Key Definitions:

  • Adult Caregiver: This refers to an adult individual whom a parent has authorized to provide temporary care for their child.
  • Parent: The term is defined as per Section 101.024.

What Does the Authorization Agreement Entail?

Parents have the right to enter into an authorization agreement with an adult caregiver. This agreement empowers the caregiver to:

  1. Authorize medical, dental, and psychological treatments, as well as immunizations for the child.
  2. Secure health and automobile insurance for the child.
  3. Enroll the child in educational institutions ranging from day-care to secondary school.
  4. Permit the child to engage in age-appropriate activities.
  5. Facilitate the child in obtaining a learner’s permit, driver’s license, or a state-issued ID.
  6. Endorse the child’s employment.
  7. Apply for and secure public benefits on behalf of the child.
  8. Procure state and federal personal identification documents for the child.

However, it’s crucial to note that the caregiver is not authorized to sanction an abortion or administer emergency contraception to the child. Moreover, only one such authorization agreement can be active at any given time.

Special Considerations:

Parents can also enter into this agreement with an adult caregiver during specific situations, such as during an investigation of abuse or neglect. Furthermore, the agreement ensures that the caregiver is not subjected to laws governing the licensing or regulation of a residential child-care facility. Consequently, the child under this agreement is not considered to be in foster care.

Contents of the Agreement:

The agreement is comprehensive and must include:

  • Detailed information about the adult caregiver and parent(s).
  • Statements emphasizing the voluntary nature of the agreement.
  • Clarity about any existing court orders or pending litigation concerning the child.
  • Clear mention of the agreement’s duration.
  • Essential warnings and disclosures about the legal implications of the agreement.

Execution and Termination:

For the agreement to be valid, it must be signed and notarized by both the parent and the adult caregiver. The agreement can be terminated under specific conditions, such as a new court order affecting the parent-child relationship or a written revocation by a party.

Legal Implications:

It’s essential to be aware that presenting an invalid authorization agreement, making false statements on the agreement, or obtaining the agreement through deceitful means can lead to a Class B misdemeanor.

In Conclusion:

The Authorization Agreement for Nonparent Adult Caregiver is a significant provision that ensures the well-being of a child when parents wish to temporarily delegate caregiving responsibilities. However, understanding the nuances and legal implications of this agreement is crucial. If you’re considering entering into such an agreement or need representation in a divorce or child custody case, don’t navigate these waters alone. Contact The Blacknall Firm for expert guidance and representation. We’re here to help.