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Navigating virtual visitation: Tips for divorced parents

On Behalf of | Feb 19, 2024 | Child Custody

Modern technology has made it a lot easier for people to stay in touch, even when they’re located some distance from each other – so it’s no real surprise that “virtual” visitation is being increasingly embraced by divorced parents as a means to stay better connected to their children.

Setting up virtual visitation requires some careful collaboration between co-parents. Just like any other type of visitation, “ground rules” can help manage expectations and avoid conflicts.

Issues that have to be addressed

In your parenting plan, it’s important to spell out as many of the details of your virtual visitation as possible. These concerns include:

  • What devices will be used for the virtual visitation? Any specific apps?
  • Which parent will provide the electronic devices used for virtual visitation?
  • If a phone plan or internet service is required, which parent will pay the cost?
  • How often will virtual visitation occur, and at what days and times?
  • What privacy measures need to be in place to facilitate the parent-child relationship?
  • Does the child’s age and abilities factor into the situation? Will they need help with devices?
  • What steps will the parents take to coordinate virtual visitation times?
  • If a child is banned from their electronics as a disciplinary measure, how will that affect their virtual visitation? Does the parent with physical custody of the child have the unilateral power to make that decision?

It’s also smart to discuss what degree of flexibility can be expected when there are unforeseen circumstances. Addressing how scheduling can be modified for temporary changes in circumstances can also help keep the process conflict-free. A well-developed parenting plan is the best way to make sure that all these issues are addressed in advance.