When parents in Tennessee divorce, they are generally concerned about being able to maintain a strong relationship with their kids. They may also experience anxiety around the possibility of a protracted dispute with the other parent regarding custody/visitation rights. In many cases, however, parents can resolve these issues without having to take a case to court.

When a divorce is relatively amicable, parents may find it easier to simply work out custody issues between themselves. Addressing things directly, without bringing in another party, can reduce both the costs of divorce as well as the possibility of friction developing between parents. However, there are times when it’s prudent to consult with an attorney before beginning such negotiations.

Another option is to seek alternative dispute resolution through a mediator or collaborative family law attorney. This allows couples who may not be in agreement to work with a neutral third party or their own attorneys to come to a resolution. Alternative dispute resolution can likewise reduce costs and speed up the legal process of ending a marriage.

In situations where parents are unable to resolve issues between themselves or with a mediator, it may be necessary to take a case to court. Judges will consider the best interests children while also reviewing evidence about the relationship that each parent has with the children. During this time, the advice and representation of a family law attorney may help protect a parent’s rights during the divorce process. An attorney could help a parent fight for a fair custody decision.