Kingsport, TN asked in Child Custody and Divorce for Tennessee

Q: In Tennessee can a mother keep the children from the father if there is NO divorce or parenting plan

Can she legally take them to another state to keep them from the father

Thank you. My son went and filed for a divorce today. So hopefully he will get to see his girls soon.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Columbia, TN
  • Licensed in Tennessee

A: Probably YES, she can move. In Tennessee, children born "out of wedlock" ( the biological parents are not married) are deemed to be in the sole custody and control of the MOTHER since there can be questions about exactly who is the father. The only way to change this is for the father to file court papers and assert his rights by proving ( getting DNA tests) that he is the biological father. As your question says there is not yet any court order or parenting plan, the MOTHER is the legal guardian and can make these decisions. In sum,the father needs to file court papers ASAP.

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