September 15, 2022

Determining Long Distance Parenting Time in Michigan

When parents separate, they will likely go from living in the same house together with their children to living in different homes. Two separate homes can make it more challenging for the child to spend quality time with both parents. This is especially true if the child’s parents live hundreds of miles apart.

Possible scheduling options for long distance parents

When divorced or separated parents live far apart, traveling back and forth between homes can be detrimental to the child. Therefore, in long distance parenting situations, Michigan parents may consider:

  • Traveling to the child’s primary home for parenting time
  • Alternating weekends
  • Alternating holiday and school breaks

By allowing each parent to spend extended periods of time with the child, the child will not have to deal with the stress of having their routine disrupted on a regular basis.

Virtual parenting time

Many people use Zoom, Facetime, text messaging, e-mail, and other forms of electronic communication to stay connected. For divorced parents, this technology can be a great way to spend quality time with their kids even if they cannot be with the child in person. It is important to schedule this virtual time around the child’s schedule, as to not interrupt their daily routine.

Sharing transportation costs

Long distance travel can get expensive quickly. Both parents should share transportation costs and try to meet in the middle for pickups/drop-offs whenever possible. If the child is old enough, flying unaccompanied with the supervision of an airline employee could be a good way to save time and money.

Separated parents who live far apart may have additional challenges that parents who live in the same area do not have to face. A family law attorney may be able to help you and your ex work out any issues relating to your child custody arrangement and help your child maintain strong relationships with both of their parents.