Callahan & Binkley, PLC

Custody is determined in Tennessee by seeking out a situation that will be in the child’s best interest. 15 elements make up the best interest of the child analysis. This evaluates things like:

  • Who has done the most parenting of the child;
  • Who is doing the most work;
  • Who drives the child to school;
  • Who makes their dinner;
  • Who does their homework with them;
  • What other relatives does this parent have that can help with the child;
  • Whether there are any extended family members that help with the child;
  • Who provides the monetary support for the child;
  • Who buys their clothes;
  • Who buys the groceries;
  • Who pays the electric bill;
  • And More…

There are a lot of different factors that are weighed. It gets especially complex when a parent has drug issues or criminal issues.

The court will take into consideration the input of children that are 12 years of age or older. However, they will not make a decision based on the child’s wishes if they determine that those wishes are not in the best interest of that child.

When A Divorce Is Underway, Are There Temporary Custody Orders That Go Into Place, And How Is That Decided?

Temporary orders can be entered in if you have a very contentious divorce and a child is involved. The judge will consider the above mentioned factors and determine an initial custody plan. Through the divorce process, a more comprehensive plan would be established.

How Is Child Support Determined In Tennessee?

In Tennessee, the court takes the gross income of both parents into consideration. If one parent does not work, they’ll attribute them to the minimum wage. If a parent had a job before being a stay-at-home parent, they might be credited to the minimum wage because the judge will see that they have the capacity to make a greater amount of money.

To determine the child support that will be ordered, the court looks at:

  • The amount of days that each parent has the child;
  • Who carries their health insurance and whether they are paying out-of-pocket;
  • Daycare or after-school care;
  • Child support paid to another child from a different relationship;
  • And more…

It’s important to understand, child support has nothing to do with your amount of debt or how much your mortgage or car payment is. What’s more, parents making more than $10,000 a month have a set percentage that they’ll pay for one or two or three children.

Finally, child support can be awarded temporarily. This is often awarded at the same time as the temporary parenting plan.

For more information on Family Law in Tennessee, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (931) 322-5055 today.

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