Tennessee Child Custody

Posted by admin on April 27th, 2006

Most states have adopted guidelines to aid them in making the proper decision in child custody cases that are in the best interest of the children involved, Tennessee is one of these states. The factors that the courts and judges consider are:

* The emotional ties, love and affection between the parents and the children.

* The willingness of each parent to provide their children with clothing, food, medical care, education and all necessary care.

* The main caregiver of the children.

* How long the children have lived in their present stable environment, except in cases of abuse where a parent has left because of such abuse. If the home environment was hostile and the parent left with the children then this was not a stable environment and will not weigh in the decision made by the court.

* How stable the family unit is.

* The physical and mental health of both parents.

* The adjustment of the children in their home, community and school.

* The wishes of the children if they are at least 12 years of age or older. The court may listen to younger children, but the older children’s preferences will weigh heavier than the younger ones.

* Evidence of emotional or physical abuse to any of the children, to one of the parents or to anyone living in the home. The court will review all evidence and determine accordingly for the safety and well being of the children involved. Any evidence of abuse to the children will be given to the juvenile court for further proceedings.

* The behavior and character of anyone that lives in the home or visits frequently that may interact with the children.

* The past performance of the parents to accept their responsibilities on rearing their children.

* The willingness of both parents to ensure a continued and loving relationship between both of them and their children.

* Any other evidence deemed important that would be in the best interest of the children.

The non-custodial parent does have rights under Tennessee law and they are as follows:

* The right to carry on a telephone conversation without any interruptions from the other parent at least twice a week and at reasonable times for reasonable amounts of time.

* The right to send to mail to their children without the custodial parent opening the mail and or censoring anything in the mail.

* The right to receive notification and information regarding any death, major illness or hospitalization within 24 hours of the fact.

* The right to any school records including, attendance records, names of teachers, copies of the children’s report cards, class schedules, tests scores and any other pertinent information.

* The right to any medical records.

The court may decide that some these rights are not feasible especially in cases of domestic violence.

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