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The importance of virtual visitation for parents and children

Whether you live across town from your children or relocation by you or your ex has placed you hundreds or even thousands of miles away, you can stay connected to your kids via the many forms of virtual visitation.

While Arizona isn't one of the states that currently has specific laws that allow family courts to order virtual visitation (also known as internet, electronic or online visitation), parents can choose to make special provisions for it in their custody and visitation agreements.

Virtual visitation can include numerous forms of communication, such as:

  • Video chat (perhaps via Skype)
  • Texting and instant messaging
  • Email
  • Social media sites
  • Photo-sharing sites

Of course, there's the good old-fashioned phone call. However, with virtual visitation, parents can see and connect with their children. They can help with homework, read a story and even be "present" for recitals, sporting events and other activities involving their kids.

In cases where a parent has limited or supervised visitation because of an issue like abuse, virtual visitation may not be granted or may be limited. However, if the only reason a parent's in-person visitation is limited is because of distance, a court will most likely allow virtual visitation.

A parent and child should be allowed to use that visitation time to talk and bond without interference from the other parent. The other parent also should not take steps to prevent their child from having virtual visitations with their mom or dad.

If you're having a problem getting the virtual visitation time you seek to have with your child or which has been outlined in your custody and visitation agreement, and you haven't been able to resolve the problem with your ex, you can take steps to get that time. Your attorney can help you work to do that.

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