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What is virtual visitation and can it help in your case?

If your ex-partner wants to move to a new location and take your child with him or her, or if you must travel often and are worried about missing out on your child's life, you may want to talk to your attorney about implementing virtual visitation in your visitation rights. This kind of visitation is relatively new to child custody courts, but it can be immensely beneficial for both parents and their children.

What is virtual visitation?

When parents and children live far apart, if one parent is deployed with the military or if visitation in person is not possible for some other reason, virtual visitation can be used. It's a type of visitation that requires technology; the child and parent may talk over emails, video conferencing software or instant messaging. Video mail and other kinds of software could also be used.

This kind of visitation can be built into a parenting arrangement, allowing the child and parent to talk more often than if they were restricted to seeing each other in person.

Does virtual visitation take the place of in-person visitation?

Virtual communication can't take the place of seeing a parent or child in person, but virtual visitation can help parents bridge the gap between talking on the phone and seeing their child. For instance, talking over the Internet via webcam allows the child and parent to see each other, their facial expressions and things the parent or child want to share with one another. The parent can read a child bedtime stories, witness sporting events from a distance and talk about day-to-day events, even though he or she isn't able to be present all the time.

Source: FindLaw, "Virtual Visitation," accessed June 08, 2016

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