How Can I Get 50/50 Custody of My Child in Tennessee?

parents and child

When going through a divorce or ending your relationship, your children should be your number one priority. It is important for them to continue to have a relationship with both parents, but this can pose an issue if you struggle to get along with your ex. 50/50 custody has advantages and disadvantages, but it has been proven to contribute to healthy development in a growing child. If you are wondering whether or not you can get 50/50 custody of your child during a custody dispute, speak with a Memphis, Tennessee child custody lawyer to discuss the details of your situation today.

How is Custody Determined in Tennessee?

Custody may be determined outside of the court by the parents. If they are unable or unwilling to create their own plan, a court will take over. In Tennessee, courts will always make custody decisions that reflect the best interests of the child or children involved. They will evaluate the relationship the child has with each parent, the financial status of each parent, the mental and physical well-being of each parent, and where they live in relation to the child’s school, family, and friends. One parent may receive primary or sole custody, or they may split the responsibility 50/50. Every family is different so every custody agreement will be unique.

Can I Receive 50/50 Child Custody?

There are a few ways that parents can end up with equal custody of their child. The first and most common way that custody is decided is by the two parents creating a parenting plan on their own. This method works best when the parents have a friendly or at least civil relationship. If it is possible they can sit down together and negotiate details like their child’s education, medical care, and where they will reside. If you and the other parent are both on board with a 50/50 custody plan you can include it in the arrangement and submit it to the court for approval.

If you cannot successfully negotiate a 50/50 custody plan on your own, you can turn to some alternative dispute resolution methods, one of which is mediation. Mediation is helpful as it allows the parents to maintain total control of the decision. During mediation, the parents will meet with a mediator who is neutral to the issues at hand. They have no decision-making power, they simply help guide the conversation and ensure all voices are heard. Mediation has proven to be beneficial for couples in divorces and child custody disputes.

If you and your ex cannot come to an agreement, the decision of child custody will fall to a court. However, that does not mean that you won’t be able to achieve 50/50 custody. You can work with your attorney to create an argument of why joint and equal custody is the best option for your child. Provide evidence of how you are equipped to handle the responsibility. Courts want to rule in favor of the child’s best interests. If their best interest is 50/50 custody then a court may award it.