When is Sole Custody Granted in Tennessee?

child hugging parent child custody child with eyes closed

During any type of divorce or separation where children are involved, the most important thing to consider is the well-being of the child. Tennessee courts will always make decisions based on their best interest. During divorce proceedings and custody battles, important decisions will be made concerning custody of the child. In an ideal world, those decisions would result in the maintenance of healthy relationships with both parents. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. Read on and reach out to a Memphis, Tennessee child custody lawyer to learn more about sole custody in Tennessee and how our legal team can assist you.

What is Sole Custody?

There are two types of custody, legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody is the right to make decisions on behalf of the child. Parents with legal custody can make educational, religious, and medical decisions for their children. Physical custody refers to where and with whom the child resides. Parents may have joint legal and physical custody, meaning that the child alternates living with both of them, and both parents have rights regarding decisions on education, religion, and health.

Sole custody is also referred to as full custody. With sole physical custody, the child lives with one parent full-time. When a parent has sole legal custody, they have the final say on all legal decisions about their child.

Should I Seek Sole Custody?

As a parent, you will always want what is best for your child. You’re probably wondering if sole custody is the answer. There are a plethora of reasons why sole custody should be sought after during or after a divorce. It may be time to petition for sole custody if any of the following applies to your child’s other parent.

  • History of drug and alcohol abuse
  • History of physical abuse
  • History of neglect
  • History of mental illness
  • Relocation or Incarceration

Petitioning for sole custody should never be done as a punishment for the other parent but as a safety measure for the child. Most of the scenarios listed would be dangerous and damaging for a child to be around. If/when the above situations are true, seek sole custody of your child.

What Are My Chances of Receiving Sole Custody in Tennessee?

Without knowing the details of your circumstances it is difficult to know. Custody battles can be a time-consuming and difficult process, and as stated Tennessee courts do want to allow the child the opportunity to cultivate a relationship with both parents. With that being said, being around someone with a background of abuse or neglect is never in the child’s best interest.

Every family situation is unique, so there is no telling what the likelihood of receiving sole custody is. Contact an experienced attorney to find out if you have a case for full custody.