Mathis, Bates & Klinghard PLLC
A Family Law Firm - Clarkville, TN
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Allegations of abuse and their impact on child custody decisions

The goal of a Tennessee court that must establish a custodial plan for a family is to meet the needs of the child who will be affected by the court's decision. This can mean that the court must make many considerations to determine the best interests of the child. One important consideration that can be weighed in its evaluation is the presence of allegations or evidence of abuse in the parent-child relationship.

Claims of abuse, whether emotional, physical or sexual, can be important factors that can sway courts against awarding custody to some parents and giving it to others. For example, if a parent has been alleged to have harmed their child through alleged acts of violence a court may determine that placing the child with such parent would be contrary to their best interests.

Claims of abuse can impact a parent's right to physical custody and legal custody. Keeping a child out of the home of an alleged abuser may be a priority for a court and may directly impact that parent's physical custody rights, but a parent may also be denied legal custody if it is found that their actions with regard to making decisions about the child's upbringing will intentionally inflict harm on the child.

At the end of the day a court must decide how best to meet a child's needs and that can mean limiting the custodial rights of an allegedly abusive parent. Parents who have been wrongfully identified as abusers and potentially harmful to their kids may wish to seek the counsel of family law attorneys. These attorneys may be able to help them overcome the damaging claims that may curtail their parental rights.

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Mathis, Bates & Klinghard PLLC
412 Franklin Street
Clarksville, TN 37040

Phone: 931-444-3153
Fax: 931-278-6642
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