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COVID-19 and child custody arrangements in Tennessee

Posted by James Judkins | Mar 25, 2020 | 0 Comments

Parents naturally have concerns about the coronavirus and spending time with the other parent.

Do I have to let my child go with their other parent?

If a court order is in effect and you chose to unilaterally prevent your child from going with the other parent you can be charged with contempt and criminally charged with custodial interference and possibly be sentenced to jail. You could also spend time in jail for contempt. Contempt is a proceeding where if the court finds you willfully and intentionally violated that custody order you can serve 10 days in jail for each violation thereof and have to pay your ex attorney fees in prosecuting the contempt case.

How do I prevent the child from going with the other parent?

If a custody order is in effect the only way you can legally prevent the child from leaving your custody and care during the coronavirus crisis is with a petition for a restraining order and an emergency restraining order. However, under the rules of civil procedure immediate and irreparable harm must occur before a court will grant such. Do you have evidence your ex or someone in his or her new home has the coronavirus? Or do you have evidence your ex will take your children to locations where the child will be exposed to the coronavirus? Do you have evidence your child has a compromised immune system or is he young, healthy, and as strong as an ox? Does your pediatrician opine your child should stay away from the other parent and why? If a temporary restraining order is granted preventing your ex from removing the child from your location the court must within 15 days hold a hearing on a restraining order.

About me

I am James M. Judkins and for a decade family law has been a big part of my practice. Located in the heart of Murfreesboro and in Smithville, Tennessee, I represent clients in family law situations all throughout Tennessee. Helping people successfully through the some of the most turbulent times of their lives gives me a great sense of accomplishment.

Copyrighted 2020 James M. Judkins all rights reserved 

Disclaimer: The information in this blog post (“post”) is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information contained in this post should be construed as legal advice from James M. Judkins, attorney or the individual author, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through, this blog without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient's state, country or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.

About the Author

James Judkins

About James M. “Jim” Judkins, Attorney at Law Professionalism and Dedication are the hallmarks of my life. Mr. Judkins always wanted to be a litigation attorney. He considers the practice of law his purpose in life and he holds himself to a very high professional and ethical standard. Mr. Judki...


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