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Helton Law Firm, PLLC

Parent behavior in child custody battles

Tennessee parents who have divorced know that the end of a marriage can be stressful for children. While most parents are genuinely concerned about their kids, it's also true that a divorcing couple may not see eye to eye on custody issues. In situations where decisions about custody, visitation and child support are at issue, it's important that both parents monitor their own conduct.

Parents need to be mindful of their own emotions and thought processes during child custody negotiations. If a parent realizes that he or she is seeking custody largely out of anger or desire for revenge, he or she may wish to seek professional help for dealing with these emotions. Parents should put their children's needs first when making decisions about the future.

It's also important for parents to refrain from trying to influence the child's opinion of the other parent. Attempting to turn a child against a parent, or "coaching" a child about what to say to a lawyer or judge is frowned upon in the family court system. Children should be encouraged to maintain healthy relationships with both parents.

In situations where a judge has issued an order regarding parenting time, visitation, or other issues, both parents should comply with the judge's directives. Failing to obey a court order may not only prejudice the judge against the parent, it can have severe legal consequences.

Individuals who are going through a divorce may benefit from speaking with a family law attorney. The lawyer can review the divorce case and make appropriate recommendations. In addition, a lawyer may be able to seek a child custody modification if it appears that doing so would benefit the child and family.

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