Virtual Visitation In Florida Divorce
If you are the noncustodial parent in a Florida divorce, you may be concerned about maintaining contact with your children. Parenting plans lay out specifics regarding visitation, and, in some cases, virtual visitation can minimize some of the challenges busy or long-distance families have. With nearly 35 million kids in this country living with parents who are separated or divorced, it is one more tool in the tool bag that can be used by family courts to ensure children get as much contact with both parents as possible. And here in Florida, parents may be legally required to include virtual visitation as part of the parenting plan.
When is Virtual Visitation Helpful?
Generally, the court will order virtual visitation when non-custodial parents live a fair distance from their children and they don’t have the opportunity to have regular in-person visits. Using Skype, Zoom, email, and other technologies to maintain regular contact can take the sting out of those missed visits. But even when divorced parents live near one another and have joint physical custody, virtual visitation allows both parents the chance to have daily contact. It’s yet another way for parents who are focused on the best interests of their children to demonstrate that they understand and support a child’s need for two loving, involved parents in their life.
Benefits of Virtual Visitation
Children of divorce often struggle with issues related to their parents’ separation, which can increase their vulnerability–compared to peers from intact families– to documented problems such as:
- Poor school performance;
- Behavioral issues;
- Increased involvement in criminal activity;
- Greater likelihood of sexual activity at a young age;
- Higher risk of living in poverty.
Virtual visitation, when used consistently, can be central to building a strong bond with parents, letting kids know that they are, indeed, loved and cared about by a non-custodial parent. It can also enhance bonding between half- and step-siblings.
Making it Work
Both parents really need to cooperate in order to derive the maximum benefits of virtual visitation. For instance:
- There should be regularly scheduled visits that both parents support and make time for;
- The visits should be private, especially for older kids who can manage it–meaning the custodial parent should avoid lurking about or questioning the child about the conversation;
- The goal should be communication and support of the child—never use it as a way to spy on the child’s home or to check up on what the other parent is up to.
Your Parenting Concerns Addressed
The biggest concerns divorcing parents face are the questions about the well-being of their children in the wake of a split. At WiseLieberman, our experienced Boca Raton child custody attorneys are familiar with the worries about custody, visitation, parenting plans, and maintaining healthy, strong relationships. We can help you to achieve the best possible arrangements in your divorce. To discuss your situation, schedule a confidential consultation in our office today.