Unique Aspects of Parenting While Living in Different States

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Custody and visitation cases are some of the most complicated and difficult cases to handle, simply due to the emotions and stress that they inevitably involve. These cases become even more complex, however, when one parent is living out of state or several hours away from the child. Parenting plans become much more difficult to create and maintain, which can have a negative impact on the relationship between the parent and child.

Dealing with Holidays and School Breaks

When parents live in the same city or area, it is relatively easy to split up holidays so that both parents can see a child. However, when parents live much farther apart, it may not be always possible for a child to see both parents on Christmas Day. Parents need to have a definite measure of flexibility in working out a parenting schedule, particularly when it comes to special days. For example, parents may need to set up a schedule for their child to alternate holidays or special days with each parent, rather than spending the majority of a holiday traveling or driving several hours to see each parent. The parents have to keep in mind what is best for the child, not necessarily what is best for them. The reality is that holidays can be celebrated on different days, and doing so does not make those holidays any less special.

Transportation and Long-Distance Parenting

Transporting children between parents’ residences for visitation purposes can often become a point of contention between parents, particularly if the distance is lengthy and available transportation is expensive. In resolving long-distance parenting disputes, the decision as to which parent is responsible for transportation costs is an essential one. Preferably, both parents will be responsible for the financial burden of transporting the child for visitation purposes.

Encourage Communication

The many advances in technology in recent years have made it much easier for parents and their technology-savvy children to communicate on a frequent basis through the various forms of electronic communication. Whereas long-distance relationships used to be relegated to the expensive long-distance telephone call, parents and children now can communicate easily and often through text messages, age-appropriate social media sites, e-mails, and Skype. Not only are these forms of communication often low-cost or free, but they also permit both parents and children to communicate while on the go, which is often the only free time both individuals have between a hectic work and school week. In the Proposed Parenting Plan form that South Carolina law requires all litigants to complete and submit, there are specific sections in which you can list the proposed types and times of electronic communications between parent and child, and any restrictions thereon.

Do Not Hesitate to Call for Legal Assistance

Long-distance parenting relationships can be difficult, under the best of circumstances. No matter whether you are facing a long-distance custody and parenting dispute or another type of family law problem, legal assistance can be essential to the efficient and successful resolution of your case. Contact the Greenville, SC family lawyers at Elliott Frazier Law Firm, LLC today and schedule a consultation as quickly as possible.

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