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GPS Tracking Child Custody

Is It Legal To Monitor Your Kid? -The Role of GPS Tracking and Legal Considerations

Going through a legal separation, divorce, or child custody case can be absolutely brutal. If you are reading this article and facing one of these situations you have our deepest sympathies, as a divorce or contentious custody agreement can be trying on parents, children, and everyone involved. Unfortunately, it is very common for one parent to take full custody of a child based on the grounds of the co-parent being negligent or violent. This can be due to homelessness, unemployment, domestic violence, drug use, or other forms of addiction. If you believe your ex is a negligent parent and want to make sure your child is safe or you believe your ex might be tracking you, this article will help demystify laws surrounding GPS tracking child custody.

Disclaimer: You’re navigating a tough road, and understanding the law is crucial. Check your state’s statutes to avoid legal pitfalls. Here, you’ll confirm what’s permissible when tracking a child’s location. This knowledge is power, especially when it feels like everything else is uncertain. Therefore, we would encourage you to seek legal counsel to get the most accurate information on GPS tracking child custody in your area. Now, let’s get to some of the facts!

GPS Tracking Child Custody
GPS Tracking Child Custody

Setting Up GPS Tracking: A Step-by-Step Guide

Once you’ve decided on GPS tracking, selecting the right product is your first step. Consider options like AirTags, Tile Mate, or dedicated personal GPS trackers. Think about your child’s routine and choose a device that fits seamlessly into their life.

Start by purchasing the device. You could opt for an AirTag if you’re looking for a bluetooth tracker that is small and reliable. What’s great about AirTags is they are discreet and easily attached to backpacks or jackets. If Android is more your style, a Tile Mate is a solid alternative.

Next, find a spot for the device. You want it hidden yet functional. An inner backpack pocket or sewn into a favorite jacket could work. Be creative, but respect your child’s space and comfort.

Now, let’s talk about setting up. With AirTags, sync it with your iPhone following on-screen prompts. Tile Mate pairs with both Android and iOS through its app. For personal GPS trackers, follow the manufacturer’s instructions to activate and monitor the device.

Remember, responsible monitoring is key. Keep your child’s schedule in mind. Check the device’s app or web portal periodically, not obsessively. And crucially, if your child is old enough to understand, have a conversation. Their awareness and consent are important. It fosters trust and ensures they feel safe, not just monitored.

Use these tools to protect, not to invade privacy. Your child’s security is paramount, but so is your relationship with them. Stay informed, stay discreet, and above all, ensure your actions always align with love and care.

7 Reasons Why Parents Use GPS Devices For Child Safety

  1. Co-Parent Is Involved In Drugs.If you suspect that your co-parent is involved in drug use or other illegal activities, a GPS device can provide peace of mind by allowing you to track your child’s whereabouts and ensure that they are safe.
  2. Co-Parent Has Mental Disorders/Illnesses.If your co-parent has mental health disorders or illnesses that could affect their ability to care for your child, a personal GPS tracker can help you monitor your child’s safety and well-being.
  3. Child Is Being Neglected.If you suspect that your child is being neglected or is in danger, a GPS device can help you keep track of their location and take action to protect them.
  4. There Are Arrest Warrants Out For Ex.If your co-parent has an arrest warrant out for them, a GPS tracking system can help you monitor their movements and ensure that your child is not put in harm’s way.
  5. The Parent Of The Child Is Involved In Illegal Activities.If you suspect that the parent of your child is involved in illegal activities, a mini GPS can help you ensure that your child is not exposed to these dangerous situations.
  6. Non-Custodial Parent Has New Partner That Is Suspicious.If your co-parent has a new partner that you are suspicious of, a GPS tracker can help you monitor your child’s safety and well-being.
  7. Ex-Partner Has Criminal Background.If your ex-partner has a criminal background, a GPS system can help you ensure that your child is safe and protected from any potential danger.

Think about why you’re considering GPS tracking. Your child’s safety is paramount, but so is their trust. Ensure your actions align with both. Use technology thoughtfully—your child’s emotional well-being depends on it.

Can GPS Tracker Be Used As Evidence In Child Custody Hearings – What Parents Should Know

If you hire a private investigator, they can legally obtain information about your ex through the use of surveillance technologies. Think products such as voice recorders, hidden cameras, and GPS tracking devices. However, many people do not have the money to hire a private detective and may choose to purchase a spouse GPS tracker to conduct their own investigations. This is where things can get tricky. Why? Because if a GPS tracker was used unlawfully, any evidence gathered from the GPS device will be inadmissible in court. An example of this would be if you entered your ex’s automobile and used a GPS system to secretly track their vehicle or downloaded a spy upon their cell phone without consent.

There are some legal gray areas if a hidden GPS tracker is placed on the outside of a vehicle that is parked on public property, but you would need to research the GPS laws in your state for more details on this. However, if you’re collecting evidence for court, tread carefully. Only gather information legally—unlawful tracking can backfire in legal proceedings. Your evidence should strengthen your case, not weaken your credibility.

GPS Tracking Child Custody In California

If you are a California resident involved in a nasty child custody and divorce situation then you might be wondering, “Can my ex track me during my parenting time?” If you are the parent or legal guardian you do have some rights when it comes to tracking your child’s whereabouts. Cell phones and personal GPS tracking devices can all be used to help a parent make sure their child is safe, but that location tracking technology comes with legal limitations. For example, if you want to use a GPS tracker to monitor a non-custodial parent when they are in the custody of that child it is considered illegal in California. More importantly, it is illegal to put a GPS tracker on someone’s car in California if you are not the owner or lessor of that vehicle even if you state the reason is the child’s safety.

10 Facts About Child Custody

If you’re going through a divorce and seeking child custody, there are several things you should keep in mind to protect your legal rights and your child’s best interests:

  1. Custody arrangements can be established through negotiation, mediation, or court proceedings, depending on your situation.
  2. The court’s primary concern is the best interests of the child, which can involve factors such as the child’s age, health, and relationship with each parent.
  3. It’s important to work with a strong legal team who can help you understand the legal process, your rights and responsibilities, and the potential outcomes of your custody case.
  4. Recording conversations, wiretapping, or using GPS tracking to monitor your ex-spouse can be illegal and hurt your custody case. Instead, focus on developing a solid parenting plan that addresses issues such as visitation time, transportation, and communication.
  5. Child support is a key component of many custody arrangements and can be calculated using a child support calculator based on factors such as each parent’s income and the child’s needs.
  6. Military divorce cases can involve unique issues related to deployment, benefits, and more. If you or your spouse is in the military, it’s important to work with a legal team that has experience in this area.
  7. When using GPS tracking apps, it’s important to understand the product features and how they may impact your custody case. Always make sure you’re using the app legally and with your child’s best interests in mind.
  8. Custody arrangements can be modified if there is a significant change in circumstances, such as a parent moving to a new location or a change in the child’s needs. Be prepared to work with your legal team to modify your custody agreement as needed.
  9. Remember that the goal of custody arrangements is to provide a stable, loving environment for your child. Focus on developing a solid parenting plan that takes into account the child’s needs and the legal requirements of custody arrangements.
  10. Be prepared for the possibility of a contested divorce, where custody and other issues may need to be resolved through court proceedings. Work with your legal team to prepare for this possibility and protect your legal rights.

Child With Parent

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Electronic Tracking Be Used To Monitor A Child’s Location During Custody Arrangements?

Yes, electronic tracking such as GPS devices or cell phone apps can be used to monitor a child’s location during custody arrangements. However, it is important to note that the use of electronic tracking in child custody cases can be a sensitive topic and should be approached with caution.

How Does Parental Visitation Work In Child Custody Cases?

Parental visitation refers to the time that a non-custodial parent spends with their child. Visitation arrangements can be agreed upon by the parents or ordered by the court. The amount of visitation time can vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case.

What Are Some Common Child Custody Issues That Arise During Divorce Proceedings?

Child custody issues that may arise during divorce proceedings can include disputes over physical custody, visitation schedules, child support, and relocation. These issues can be complex and emotionally charged, and may require the assistance of a family law attorney.

Is GPS Tracking Considered Wiretapping In Child Custody Cases?

GPS tracking is not considered wiretapping in child custody cases as long as it is used for legitimate purposes and not for intercepting private conversations. However, it is important to consult with an attorney to ensure that the use of GPS tracking is legal and appropriate in your specific case.

Can Postnuptial Agreements Address Child Custody And Support Issues In The Event Of A Divorce?

Postnuptial agreements can address child custody and support issues in the event of a divorce, but they are not always enforceable in court. It is important to work with an experienced family law attorney to ensure that any postnuptial agreement is drafted in a manner that will hold up in court.

But Can My Ex Track Our Child’s Cell Phone?

There are parental apps that use tracking software and could allow your ex-partner to monitor their child’s location, even when that child is in your custody. Regardless of a divorce or family legal drama, there are no laws that prevent a parent from using a spy app to track their child’s phone. On the other hand, there is no law preventing the custodial or non-custodial parent from turning that cell phone off.


Modern technology can be useful in divorce and family disputes, but it is critical not to infringe on the privacy rights of others and even more important to collect any evidence legally. This means consulting with a private investigator or family law professional before using a vehicle tracking system or spy app. Whether you are dealing with issues related to physical custody or property division, a family law attorney can advise you on how to move forward in a way that will help your case and allow you to legally acquire the information you need. We highly recommend you reach out to law offices in your state to get the latest information regarding the use of electronic surveillance in a child custody case.

Related Article: Children’s GPS Tracking Jewelry

Ryan Horban
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