In an attempt to make child custody matters easier for the children involved and to ensure their best interests remained front and center in all cases, the state of Tennessee created the Tennessee Parenting Plan law.
The law went into effect on January 1, 2001. It requires parents to make a coordinated effort to create a parenting plan. It places the responsibility on the parents to look out for their children and come to an agreement that is reasonable and fair to everyone.
Requirements of a parenting plan
The law also outlines what a parenting plan must include and provides perimeters for its creation. The plan must consider the changes the children will experience as they get older and allow for these adjustments. It needs to outline the responsibilities and duties of each parent and ensure the children do not have to deal with conflict between the parents. There must also be a clause that outlines a dispute resolution process.
Issues arising between parents
The law covers how the court will handle any issues that arise between the parents. It states that the court will side with the parent who is following the enacted parenting plan over one who is not. The parents must use whatever process they outlined in the plan to resolve issues, and during the process, they must ensure there is a written record taken. The written record will become an amendment to the original parenting plan.
The law offers some specific guidance for parents in creating a parenting plan. The idea is to provide parents with an option where they can make decisions without having to have a court order visitation and other parenting rights.