Sunday

Supervised Visitation

opinion 1
I have an interesting situation. I was approached by a woman who is needing someone to supervise visits with her children. Since I am normally a nanny this was at first not something I was interested in but after speaking to the woman I was intrigued and want to help out and also make some extra money for my savings at the same time. My question for everyone is this: What would you charge for a shift that was 6pm on Saturday to 6pm on Sunday? I would be staying the night with her and her children to supervise visitation, sleeping at her home and then lightly interacting with her kids but mostly there to just watch and ensure safety. She would be paying for my meals, transportation, and any activities she does with the children because I am required to attend as well, etc. I don't want to rip her off, but I also don't want to lowball myself and end up feeling cheated. Does anyone have suggestions? For reference her children are older: 8, 9 and 12.

22 comments:

une jeune fille said...

This is interesting I've never heard of a supervised visit not being arranged & approved by the state.


My rule is my normal hourly rate plus an additional $2/hr if overnight is expected.

Random but why is it always the nannies concerned about ripping the parents off? Never seems to happen the other way around.

Anonymous said...

OP here.

It's a default order from the court, so it's really just a technicality.

The stipulations (since it's court ordered, not through the state DHS agency) are that it is a mutually agreed upon 3rd party. It could be family or friends, or someone hired to do it, etc.

I want to form a long-term relationship with this woman because she may be able to aid me when it comes time to returning to school and possibly if my other job doesn't work out for long term, so that's my reason for not wanting to rip her off. :P I don't want to burn bridges that have just been created, since we could both benefit one another.

Wendi said...

@Une:

Because us Nannies have good hearts...and a lot of families do not. They look down on us like secondary citizens which is why they do not think we deserve decent pay.

I would charge between $150-175 OP. Seems like a decent wage for 24 hrs w/three children.

OP said...

Thanks Wendi! I was thinking $175 for 24 hours, so it's good to know I wasn't too off (over OR under), haha. I'm saving to move next year, so I will be putting the extra 100 towards that each time, and pocketing the 75 for miscellaneous expenses on my part. :)

SLNanny said...

I used to supervise visits that were court ordered through divorce/custody agreements. I also supervised visits for children in state custody but that is a different process. Make sure that you read the court order personally to understand what is expected of the visitation supervisor. Depending on how the order is written, you may be expected to be present at all times, including sleeping, bathing, etc. Also, for both the court and your own protection, take notes of every visit. I would charge $20-25 per hour. Please make sure you throughly check out this woman first. Supervised visits are not the norm and indicate that pretty serious issues have either happened or are alleged.

OP said...

SLNanny - The court order is a default order due to the Dad's request and the Mother's lack of presence at a hearing. Nothing more or less.

I will be seeing the court order on Thursday when I meet them for a supervised trip to their evaluator (court ordered). However, the Mother has mentioned all it says is that the supervisor has to be a mutually agreed upon 3rd party, as I mentioned.

The Mother was VERY forthcoming, and I have spoken to the evaluator so I am fairly certain that this is more of a vendetta against the Mother than anything else.

I really am not looking to charge hourly, since it's 24 hours, that is WAY more money than anyone around me can afford I'm sure, lmao. I believe I will most likely be charging her $175 for a 24 hour overnight. If the order mentioned having to supervise sleep, I would have to turn it down, since I can't not sleep. ;)

But it sounds like this is quite a bit different than the supervising you have done. Thank you for the input, it's much appreciated and I will of course be sure to see all the documents pertaining to supervision.

Phoenix said...

I wouldn't take a job like this. For one the woman is having supervised visitation for a reason. Normally it is when the courts feel the parent is a flight risk. Also they can request this type of visitation if the parent has been involved in a domestic violence dispute. I have a friend who is very well versed in the matter as she required her ex to have visitation with their daughter. He was a psycho and not very stable mentally.

Dad may have a reason for this type of situation. And mothers DO kidnap their kids. My son was kidnapped by his biological mother when he was 1. She went to Mexico because that is where she is from. We couldn't find her for 4 years. It was a nightmare. I am not a person who believes the mother should automatically get rights to her children just because she gave birth. Giving birth does not make someone a mother.

OP said...

Phoenix- Like I said, the court order is a default order due to her inability to appear in court for the hearing. If there was a serious cause for alarm the court would've ordered mandated supervised visits through a DHS agent, not a private, mutually agreed upon party. This is between the partents, not due to abuse or neglect on the Mother's part. I'm familiar with my state laws for this sort of thing, I just want to know what I should be charging. Also, I've read all the court dockets in regards to their very public divorce- HE is the one who laid hands on her, not the other way around. In any event, I understand that it's possible she is the bad parent, but considering the court case details it's unlikely.


Anonymous- I won't be doing any maid or servant duties, though I will of course be willing to help out with dinner and the like, since I will be sharing meals with the family. I am fully aware of the requirements to supervise visitation in my state, and I plan to see the actual court documentation as well. I'm a mandatory reporter in my state as well, so if anything unsafe happened I would have no choice but to report it. I really don't think I'll be pulled into court, and I haven't signed any documents saying I would testify in court for either party. I'm not about to get myself involved, since I have a Mon-Fri job, I'd be unable to testify anyhow.

SLNanny said...

OP, I think as long as you do.your research and feel good about the situation, you should go for it. I found supervising pretty interesting most of the time. Just know though that when supervision is ordered in custody cases, it's almost always ordered to be a agreed upon 3rd party. DHS usually only supervises when they have an open case. Do know that you are very likely to be ordered to testify whether you have a mon-fri job or not. This is true even if a family member was doing the supervising. Divorce cases can get out of hand and it is totally possible that the order is nothing more than a vendetta. My only question about that would be why mom choose not to attend this hearing where she knew supervision would be proposed. But again, if you do research and feel good about it, go for it :) you may find it's something you enjoy and may turn into more clients for you. Good luck :)

Southern Nanny said...

Following along with the others--it's up to you and how close you are to the children whether or not you decide to give a gift. Now in regards to the party, I suppose it just depends on the type of person you are but I tuck away some business cards and network like crazy! My employer would introduce me and I would branch out and work weekends or date nights for their friends. Really, most people are oh-so friendly and if they have kids they usually are looking for a baby-sitter, even if that means you are a back up. (Never hurts to make some extra cash.)

Phoenix said...

that is a good point. Why would the mom not show up to the trial? And women lie, she could have said he abused her. My husband's ex did that when she first went to court then had to redact the statement and look like a fool. Most of my "how to be a sneaky bitch" comes from this woman. She is the best example

It is the way YOU perceive it. But if any mom who loved her kids at all she would NEVER miss court. Especially when they were discussing custody. And she can't say she was afraid to go because of retaliation. That is a lame response and honestly she would be lying if she said something like that.

If it were me based off the criteria. I would charge $17 an hour. You are basically watching an adult too. And don't let this woman talk you in to anything stupuid like how shes a "victim" and she needs her kids back. Your job is to make sure she doesn't take off with those kids or hurt them

SLNanny said...

OP- I am not trying to say she's a bad person or bad mom. I just want to make sure you do all the background checking you can so you're not pulled into a bad situation.

Lauren said...

I would want $325 for a 24-hour period, minimum. I tend to do 12 hours at my usual rate (give or take) and then a flat rate for the other 12 hours. Most nanny agencies, etc. say to assume 8 hours for sleeping, and to charge a flat rate for that time, typically $50 - $100.

24 hours - 8 sleeping hours = 16 awake hours.

Even if you *only* make $10 an hour that would be $160 for the awake hours and at minimum $50 for the sleep time - so $210 would be the barest minimum I think you should consider for this!!

nynanny said...

To the OP,

You said: "I haven't signed any documents saying I would testify in court for either party. I'm not about to get myself involved, since I have a Mon-Fri job, I'd be unable to testify anyhow."

I'm sorry to say, but you'd have NO choice in the matter. If you're summoned to appear, you HAVE to go or be held in contempt. Job or no job.

All the same, good luck to you, OP. I hope you're not opening a can of worms here (drama!)

OP said...

I've actually decided not to take the 24 hour shifts due to my current work schedule. I already work Mon-Fri for one family and Saturday afternoons for another.

I wouldn't have the time to go home, check on my pets, get things ready for the evening overnight, etc. I'd be going straight from one job to another and currently that just isn't going to work for me.

There's no way I would be forced to testify in court. Like I said, I used to work in the field of law in my state- I'm well aware of my legal obligations and they are 0. I'm a mutually agreed upon third party for simply enforcing the rules the court has set up, which are 'the person must be a mutually agreed upon third party'. It could be family, or a friend. It doesn't HAVE to be me.

As it stands, however, I've decided I currently have way too much on my plate to deal with this.

And also, Phoenix, I realize that she could have lied- however, she had a temporary restraining order against him as well as the legal documents that are available online. I've read them all, and the case sounds like one parent against the other.

I realize people lie. But not all people lie, and not all court cases involve shitty parents all around. A LOT of parents get the shitty end of the stick thanks to our court systems, unfortunately.

So, I'll take today's 1-6 job for 90 bucks, and be on my merry way because I already have two jobs, I don't need one that's going to stress me out more than I can take, lol.

SLNanny said...

Thanks for the update OP :) I was wondering how it went today.

OP said...

SLnanny- The day trip went as expected. That is, pretty terribly. :P I was paid 100 bucks for my 6 hours, so that was nice, but I do not think I am cut out to work with children that have clearly defined issues due to their parents' divorce, and subsequent custody battle.

I also just think I do not have the patience to work with children over the age of 6. I do not have much experience with it, other than children I've watched since they were infants, who know what is appropriate and what isn't in my presence.

I feel terribly for the Mother, since she was very nice and wants me to continue working with her family. However, I am not going to be able to make it work at this time, and I do not want to devote every waking moment to work- I do like weekends for myself!

All in all, it was a good experience and I hope for the best, for both Mom and her children! They are not BAD children, just very unhappy kids that are in need of some professional help. Unfortunately that's not me!

Nanny wannabe said...

OP, if you come back on here, I am interested in what type of law you worked in and why you decided to nanny now instead. I work in law enforcement now but some days think I'd so much rather be a full time nanny.

OP said...

Nanny wannabe - OP here, I worked as a paralegal for a firm specializing in family law. i'd always intended to work in childcare but there weren't many opportunities open for me in this career choice.

I'd done nanny gigs off and on since age 16, so it's not unfamiliar territory by any means. :)

Being a nanny is great, but it is also challenging because you often believe you mean more to the family you work for than you really do. I am fortunate to have a multitude of families that I keep in contact with but there are some I don't, and that is sad.

It's a rewarding job, for sure, watching kids learn and develop. But my main interest in childcare is more aimed towards owning a preschool, i like the idea of being able to put my ideas out there and actually have them practiced in a school type environment.

nycmom said...

OP,

Sorry I'm late to the party! I had a couple of questions that arose during the exchange as you seem knowledgeable.

I thought anyone (other than accused, spouse, diplomat or if living in another state) could be subpoenaed to testify? I don't mean testify in an official capacity in this case since you would not be acting a court-appointed fashion. Just compelled to testify as to your observations during the visits. Would you mind explaining why you would not have to do so? No reason other than curiosity on my part.

I also found your comments about caring for older kids very interesting. I totally agree that caring for older kids is a completely different beast than infants/toddlers and a different skillset, even if you have known them since they were little ones. Whenever hiring I tell new interviewees this, but I just don't think caregivers who haven't worked with all ages or are not parents truly understand how different the jobs are.

You sound like you have a good head on your shoulders!

Kristie KJ said...

I am having trouble with the same issue and my ex wants supervised at this time. We were both at fault but he told me he filed to get cps out of picture and then we could focus on marriage counseling. Like an idiot I believed him not the case at all. I have hired a lawyer to come up with a mutually agreeable parenting plan. He tells my 4 year old if she cries she can't see mommy and that she is happy whether she sees me or not. Not good parenting class he took. So I am looking for help for the next 2 months until unsupervised is in affect. He was handling and took my attention away from time with her.

Kristie KJ said...

I have had friends come and stay they go to sleep when we do not much happening in my life pretty boring actually except when my daughter is here she keeps me busy and has a lot to say all day lol