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East Tennessee Family Law Blog

Could you receive a child support modification?

Making your child support payments in full and on time is a big deal. Not only does the law require this, but you know that it's bringing good to your child's life.

But what happens if you get to a point when you are unable to make your child support payments in full and on time?

Tennessee divorce costs and how to get them down a little

If you want to save money on your divorce, the first thing you need to do is try to educate yourself about the process and learn about your options.

Somewhat like weddings, there are divorces than can be handled for only a little more than the filing costs -- and there are divorces you could still be paying off a decade after its over. There are also a lot of options in between.

Keep your medical practice safe during divorce: Where to focus

When you own your own medical practice, there's almost no way to keep your divorce out of the office.

The office -- in fact, the whole practice -- may be a big part of the conflicts that arise when it comes time to divide up the assets during the divorce.

Holiday visitation schedules: An important part of custody plans

Holiday schedules are an important part of a custody plan. If you leave them out, you may find yourself more than a little upset when you realize that your ex has the kids on your birthday or the date of the yearly family gathering during the Christmas break that your kids have attended since they were born.

Here are some ideas about how to write a holiday plan into your visitation schedule that allows you and your ex to keep the spirit of the season alive:

  1. Make a list of all the important holidays to you throughout the year, religious and secular. Your ex should do the same so that you can make sure all the big dates are covered. Don't forget birthdays as well as Mother's Day or Father's Day.
  2. Rank your most important dates. This will help you determine where you and your ex have areas of conflict and which ones you can trade for dates that matter more. For example, maybe you consider Thanksgiving a chore and would be just as happy having an excuse to sit home eating Chinese takeout rather than spending it with your family. Your ex, meanwhile, may consider it a top priority. You can trade off the right to have the kids on alternating Thanksgiving for something you really love -- like going trick or treating on Halloween.
  3. If you live close together, consider splitting some of the major holidays instead of rotating them. For example, instead of spending alternating Christmases with the kids, you could set things up so you just alternate where the kids spend Christmas Eve and Christmas morning, and then change houses by noon.
  4. Be kind about important personal days -- let your ex have the kids on his or her birthday and other "personal" holidays -- like their grandmother's birthday or a family reunion. Ask for the same for yourself.
  5. If you and your ex can be civil for a few hours and really want what's best for the kids, consider sharing their birthdays. Agree to hold the birthday parties at neutral locations so that nobody has to feel too uncomfortable -- the local pizza joint probably has a party room you can use or you can all meet for dinner somewhere if the kids are older.

Don't get caught up in common divorce myths: Get an attorney

The No. 1 rule of any divorce ought to be "Don't trust advice from anyone except your attorney."

In particular, certain pieces of advice can actually end up hurting you if you fall into the trap of believing they're true:

Woman faces charges for skipping states during custody battle

There is a lot of advice out there on the internet about what to do and not do during a custody battle.

High on the list of things not to do is "skip states with your child" while the custody battle is waging on. Not only will that likely cost you the custody that you so desperately want, but it could land you in jail and make you a convicted felon. Of course, this won't help you win any custody battles later, either.

Understanding your child support obligations in Tennessee

Getting divorced and no longer having full-time interactions with your children can be heartbreaking. The less you see your children, the more frustrating the process can seem, especially if a substantial portion of your income is going to child support. You may have already taken steps to see if you were ordered to pay too much in child support. The more you make, the more you often end up paying. Having your visitation denied or reduced may have you feeling angry. Now you may be wondering if you could stop paying until you see your child.

While it may feel tempting to refuse to pay when you can't see your kid, doing so could create a host of issues for you. No matter how frustrated you may feel, your best option is typically to continue paying child support and ask for assistance in having your visitation and custody rights enforced.

The digital world and your divorce: The next 4 steps to take

If you're filing for divorce there's probably a huge list of things on your mind that you know you need to handle.

Put protecting your electronic assets and digital data at the top of that list -- because a lot of damage can be done with just the click of a few buttons.

Tips for surviving a high-asset divorce

Divorces are expensive -- and your costs are bound to be higher if you happen to have a family business and any significant disputes about who should get what.

When you and your spouse have built your fortune together, this is how you start to break it apart:

Gay couples given equal custody rights in Tennessee

What makes a parent a parent? Is it biology alone that makes the cut?

A Tennessee court has made another, more final, ruling on what many people feel like should have never been an issue in the first place: whether or not married gays who have a child via artificial insemination using donor sperm have the same rights to that child that a heterosexual couple would. Specifically at issue was whether or not the nonbiological parent in a same-sex union had the same parental rights as a nonbiological parent in a heterosexual union.

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