If you are a parent facing divorce, custody arrangements are probably one of your biggest concerns.
In Tennessee, the court considers many factors when determining how parents should share childcare responsibilities after divorce, including both the financial and emotional resources of each parent.
How finances can impact custody
One of the most important things the court considers when determining custody is your ability and your spouse’s ability to provide for your children’s essential needs. In addition to the amount and stability of your respective incomes, the court may consider how your employment schedules, health care options and ability to provide daily care fit with your children’s current needs.
How emotional factors can impact custody
Emotional considerations are also essential for custody decisions. If either you or your spouse has taken on most of the responsibility for your children’s emotional, educational, health and other care needs, the court may prefer to grant primary custody to the responsible parent.
In addition to past and potential future parenting responsibilities, the court may consider:
- The physical, mental and moral fitness of you, your spouse in terms of parenting your child
- The developmental level of your child and his/her corresponding care needs
- The importance of sibling or other close relative relationships that facilitate your child’s development
The court may also weigh the benefits of keeping your child in a stable care situation vs. moving him or her to a potentially less beneficial environment.
If you and your future ex-spouse can agree to negotiate custody arrangements, you may be able to find a schedule that works for you both. However, if you do not agree, the court will have to determine a fair custody arrangement on your behalf.