Like most good parents in New York, your main priority when deciding to divorce was your children. You and your spouse agreed to devise a co-parenting plan that provides as many tools as possible for your children to successfully adapt to their new lifestyle. You both agree that they should have as much time with each of you as possible.
The problem is that you won’t be living near each other, so visitation schedules will be tricky. You might be interested in learning more about a current trend that many New York parents are implementing to help reduce visitation stress and allow kids to stay in close contact with both parents. There may be legal implications to the system, however, so it’s always best to seek experienced guidance before devising a particular plan.
Most households nowadays include some form of electronic equipment that allows household members to access the internet or various digital applications as a means of communication. Virtual visitation is a way parents can keep in touch with their kids when they do not have physical custody at the time. You can use Skype, FaceTime or other systems to enjoy video chats with your children.
As a parent, you can set rules and regulations about electronic device use in your home when your kids are staying with you. However, the other parent has a right to visitation providing the court has not deemed such visits a detriment for any reason. This means virtual visitation may be part of your formal court order. The court can order you to allow your children a certain amount of time to use electronics to virtually visit with their other parent.
Virtual visitation allows you to read to your children, see their faces, as well as allow them to see yours and feel like you are having a more personal visit than you might if you were merely texting or talking on a cell phone. If you have to be away from your kids for extended periods of time, virtual visitation may help them cope better in your absence.
While no divorce is easy, it is often possible to create an amicable plan that protects your parental rights and keeps your children’s best interests in mind. By speaking with other parents who have used virtual visitation, and by seeking clarification of New York child custody and visitation laws, you can provide your kids with the tools they need to come to terms with your divorce and maintain strong family ties.