Out of State Visitation Schedules
Visitation is hard when you and your co-parent live in different states, especially when you are not the primary custodial parent. Out of state visitation schedules are not easy things to create. They are very hit and miss and each one must be tested to see if they can work to the benefit of everyone involved. Out of state visitation schedules just seem to create more complications than there ever were before, which is why it is so important that you find the one that works best for you and your family, especially for your children.
Sit down and talk about your out of state visitation schedules
If you or your co-parent plans to move out of state you must seriously consider how it will affect your custody arrangement. Determining an out of state visitation schedule can be difficult because you don’t know how the situation will end up when it actually happens. You must convey to your co-parent what the reason for the move is and how the move would be in the best interest of your child. If you and your co-parent are in a high conflict relationship this conversation may not be easy, but it is important to remember to stay calm and discuss the move in a professional manner.
Presenting your out of state visitation schedule in court
If both co-parents consent to the move, the parent who wishes to move must present his/her case to the courts. The co-parent that is planning to move must make a clear and convincing case that the move is necessary. The courts hold the best interest of the children above all else; therefore if they do not feel that the move is in the best interest of the child they will not grant the move or an out of state visitation schedule. For instance, if you are taking a new job out of state, and you will be making more money, the court will see this as being able to better provide for your child, despite the distance. Once the court has decided in favor of the move, you can begin to discuss out of state visitation schedules.
Out of state visitation schedules that can work for you and your family
Depending on the distance, frequent visits between co-parents may not be convenient or possible. In these cases, many co-parents decide to split visitation between the school year and the child’s breaks from school such as Summer vacation or Spring break. You should also be utilizing tools such as video chat, email, and phone if your out of state visitation schedule does not allow for frequent visits. Another important aspect of your child custody agreement is the splitting of your shared expenses. Travelling expenses can really add up quickly depending on your out of state visitation schedule. These expenses should typically not be dropped on a single co-parent (depending on your own situation), which only adds to the confusion of splitting expenses. Driving, flying, or any other form of transportation can be very costly. An agreement must be made before hand and included into the custody and visitation agreement so that you and your co-parent are both obligated to stick to the agreement.