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What Is Virtual Parenting Time in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on May 19,2020 in Child Custody & Allocation of Parental Responsibility

Kane County parenting time attorneyA divorce can be one of the most difficult experiences one can go through, especially if children are involved. The allocation of parental responsibilities (child custody) and parenting time (visitation) are two important issues that need to be resolved during the divorce proceedings. A couple can create a parenting plan, which essentially outlines details such as what days of the week the child is with each parent. If they cannot agree on the terms, a decision will be made based on the best interest of the child by the court

Courts will also weigh other factors before making a decision on parenting time in order for both parents to take an active role in child-rearing. However, in these uncertain times, with stay-at-home orders issued in many states, parents are being creative by using technology for virtual visits if they cannot be done in person.  

Determining Factors for Visitation

Illinois courts recognize that children benefit from a relationship with both parents. This is generally true as long as there is no evidence or history of abuse or that a parent poses a threat to the welfare of a child. Otherwise, parenting time may be denied or supervised visitation ordered

A few of the main factors that a court will consider when determining parenting time include:

  • The amount of time each parent wants to spend with the child
  • The child’s wishes (if old enough to decide) 
  • How much each parent has cared for the child in the past two years
  • The child’s interactions with each parent and other household members 
  • The child’s ability to adjust to each home, community, and school
  • The physical and mental health of both parents and child
  • Whether each parent is willing to put the child’s needs first
  • The distance between each parent’s home and daily schedules
  • Any threat of violence or abuse to the child 

Alternative Methods of Visitation

Parenting time schedules can vary, with some children spending one week with one parent and the next week with the other parent. In other situations, one parent may have the kids every other weekend and one day during the week. During the coronavirus outbreak, these arrangements may have to be temporarily altered. It may be in the children’s best interest to stay with one parent if the other parent is an essential worker with a high risk of exposure to the virus

In this day and age, most people have smartphones, from young kids to senior citizens. Many individuals also have computers or tablets that they use for school, work, or play. Online gaming has also become a popular pastime, which a parent and child can play together even when in different households

Most of these electronic devices have video capabilities. Although many people are working from home during the pandemic, some parents might be working overtime depending on their line of work. If a parent cannot be with his or her child for whatever reason, he or she can use FaceTime or Zoom to do video calls. Grandparents, cousins, aunts, and uncles can even be involved

When apart, parents and children may also communicate electronically through email, text messages, or social media posts. Plus, there is always a good old-fashioned phone call for having a conversation or sharing news

Contact a Kane County Divorce Attorney

If you are getting a divorce and you have children, you are likely worried about having to split time with your kids. There are creative ways to stay connected when co-parenting, even if you are not always under the same roof. The distinguished law firm of Weiler & Associates, Inc.. have guided thousands of people through the often-complicated divorce proceedings. Our qualified St. Charles parenting time lawyers will explain your options so you can feel confident in your decisions. Call our office today at 630-331-9110 to schedule a confidential consultation


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