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Child custody and support are evolving, but problems exist

People who are having to pay child support in Tennessee often have to deal with what feels like an uphill battle. This is something that some lawmakers are trying to rectify; however, the changes that are coming aren't being met with full acceptance. There are still many issues that need to be addressed and ironed out.

One person who was at a recent town hall meeting is a principal at a school. He doesn't get to spend too much time with his own children because his petition for joint custody. The reason? His hectic work schedule. In essence, the man feels like his career is the reason he is being punished due to this denied petition.

This points to a very real problem. Parents who are ready to be involved with their children shouldn't have to choose between financially supporting themselves and their children or being able to spend time with those children. Instead, there needs to be something that lets the parent continue to work and have the opportunity to see their children.

One issue that the new law does address is child support. There is now a five-year max on child support claims. One of the sponsors of the bill notes that this means that a woman who lives with a child's father for four of the previous five years could only seek to have him pay one year of child support, not five years of support or support for the period preceding the term when they lived together.

As these custody and support issues evolve, it is imperative that parents who are in the midst of these issues determine who they are going to handle the problems. This means knowing what laws that apply to the case. This can be difficult, but it is a crucial component of these cases.

Source: Commercial Appeal, "Child support policies lead to frustration at town hall meeting," Makayla Boswell, July 21, 2017

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