One of the unfortunate consequences of divorce is that children no longer live in a household with both parents. This means that the child's time must be divided between the two parents. Very few parents are satisfied with visitation plans but acknowledge that it is necessary. Typically, the non-custodial parent feels that they deserve more time with the child.
Virtual visitation occurs when a parent
or grandparent uses computers to see and talk to the child. Using
programs like Skype or Facetime a parent can see the child while
talking. Furthermore, this occurs in real time. As a result,
parents can do a lot more than just chat with a child. I had one
client who played duets over the internet with the child using one
instrument and the parent another. Parents can teach yoga, karate,
and dance using virtual visitation. Children can show parents art
projects from school. There is no limit to creative use of the
internet when using these programs.
When I draft separation agreements, I
usually include language that allows virtual visitation. Even if the
parties don't have computers, I include the language as they could
get computers or smart phones in the future.
If you don't have virtual visitation
and would like to use it, consult an experienced family law attorney
to discuss adding virtual visitation to your custody arrangement.