What is the rule with regard to visiting close relatives so that ties do not get broken?
Keeping ties with close relatives: nothing has been narrated that specifies it as [bring achieved] through visits alone, for indeed, it can be achieved even with [just] a greeting of Salām that reaches them, [one’s] asking about them, supplicating for them, or mentioning good about them.
The common folk have it going around that keeping ties with close relatives cannot happen without visiting [them], [but] this has no basis in Islāmic legislation, for keeping ties happens through all [the means] mentioned [above]!
Al-Albānī, may Allāh have mercy on him, mentions in [his book] Silsilah Al-Aḥādīth Aṣ-Ṣaḥīḥah, under no. 1777, a ḥādīth: “Keep blood ties connected (lit., “moist”), even if that were [just] with a greeting of Salām.”
In it is a proof that keeping ties with blood relatives is achieved, even if with [just] a greeting of Salām that reaches them.
And today, all praise and thanks be to Allāh, talking to relatives, connecting with them, and asking about them over the phone is as easy as can be, and Allāh is the One who grants all success.
And let it be known that visiting relatives and close family should not be a cause of earning sins, for some people put their relatives and close family through difficulty by their visiting them; one [of these] may burden them with that which they cannot handle; then they suffer and get upset due to that, and ties are broken. And the reason was his insistence on keeping ties by way of visits, without having regard for its manners and etiquettes.
So it is not from good manners that you visit them when they are busy, like your visiting them on work or study days.
And it is not from good manners [your] extending the visit, so it should not be except for [the duration of] lunch or dinner [and not extended beyond that].
And it is not from good manners that you overburden them, so that you visit them, you, your children, your wife (lit., “your family”), and your dependents.
And in this way, some matters make the issue [of visiting relatives], instead of being a means of keeping ties, a cause for breaking them!
And Allāh is the One who grants all [true] success.