Waive Noncustodial Parent

This only applies to people going to school in the US.
If you have an estranged parent like one who left you as a child (or any other time) and is not really in contact with you, this applies to you. Or if you and your parent left and you are not in contact with the other parent, then this also applies. I’ll do two examples to make this clearer.
(1) Your dad left you and your mom to go live in Texas when you were 8. He sends a card on birthdays if he remembers but other than that he isn’t a part of your life. You know your next door neighbor better.
(2) Your parents got divorced and you, your dad, and your sister moved to England to get away from your abusive mother. You have broken off contact, she doesn’t pay child support on you, and you don’t plan on seeing her again. (This is me.)
Hopefully that makes it clear who it applies to. Basically if asking your parent to pay makes about as much sense as asking your neighbor, then you could get them waived.
At this point, you should write to the school’s you are applying to outlining your situation. Have some detail so that they take you seriously enough to send a noncustodial parent waiver petition.
This petition will have general information asking who you live with, when you last saw or spoke to your other parent, what sort of contact you have with your parent, how much (if any) child support is paid, etc. Then it will ask for at least one letter from a “professional familiar with your situation” which means that you need a teacher or religious leader or any other authority figure outside your family to confirm that your parent is absent (and absuive if applicable). There also may be an option for including a police report or restraining order if you have either of those. After you get these documents, it’ll be your turn to provide details. There will be a space for you to explain the situation in your own words. They really need to understand, so in this case more detail is more. Make sure that you make everything as clear as possible and include concrete examples to help them get it.
Once you turn this in, they may call you with questions. They called me. They wanted more detail on my mum’s mental health issues, who has been the provider, how we are financing our move, and what it was like to live with her. If your not comfortable giving this information, they do understand. So, you won’t be judged if it is hard for you to give it. But you really do need to answer their questions and be thorough if you want your parent waived. It is a bit uncomfortable but it will be worth it in the end and they try to make you feel safe while you share because they know it is hard. Fortunately for me, I’ve spoken to a lot of people about my mum so it wasn’t too difficult.
After this you really just have to wait for their decision. They say just a couple weeks but mine took nearly a month. I think it’s based on how confusing your case is. Mine was very complicated so I think they had to spend more time on it.
Anyway, I hope that helps. And it really is worth making an effort because you could get your parent waived. Then you won’t have to deal with them refusing to pay or using it to mainpulate you and make you feel endebted. But, if it doesn’t work out, don’t worry. There are always ways to make any situation tolerable. Mostly it’s important to not feel guilty about them paying a remember that you can repay them by being a good parent to your children (it’s all about passing good things on).

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