No Deviation for Extraordinary Travel Expenses Affirmed in Chattanooga, Tennessee Child-Support Dispute: In re Conner F.

Herston on Tennessee Family Law

Facts: Mother and Father are the never-married parents of Child.

Mother lives in Tennessee. Father lives in Colorado.

In a child-custody dispute, the Tennessee trial court designated Mother as the primary residential parent and provided that Father could exercise parenting time with Child in Tennessee.

The trial court also established Father’s child-support obligation. Notably, the trial court found that while “fairness may require a downward deviation for Father’s travel expenses in the future,” no downward deviation is appropriate at this time.

Father appealed.

On Appeal: The Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court.

The purpose of the child-support guidelines is to ensure that children receive support reasonably consistent with their parents’ financial resources.

The child-support guidelines permit deviations from the presumptive amount of child support in limited circumstances. When deviating from the presumptive amount, primary consideration must be given to the best interest of the child.

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