When two parents disagree about who should receive custody over the children after a divorce, the court is left to determine the types of ld custody orders that will be applied to a case. Family courts draw from certain standards and laws when deciding the type of child custody, who should receive custody, and whether visitation rights should be granted. One standard followed by courts is the best interests of the child, which upholds raising children in a healthy environment. If you have questions about how child custody is determined, talk to a Tennessee family law lawyer

Using the Best Interests of the Child Standard

The  standard is used to determine which orders concerning family disputes and divorces should be applied and how these could affect the children involved. When it comes to deciding child custody orders, courts will use this standard as a way to protect children from mistreatment or significant disadvantages

that could happen if the wrong type of custody is applied. 

Overall, this standard was designed to provide health, safety, education, and stability for the child. This is done to ensure that court decisions do not negatively impact the children at the expense of adult preferences or assumptions. Not only is this standard used to decided what type of custody would best benefit the child, but this standard also aims to keep children away from mistreatment like abuse or neglect. 

Tennessee looks at many factors to protect children. Some of these factors include assessing parent histories like past drug abuse, domestic violence, neglect, and abuse. Personal factors will also be examined that involve parent-child relationships, how the child feels about the parent, and the mental health of each parent. 

How Mistreatment Affects Children

Understanding the ways  can impact your child can help you make important decisions about child custody. A lawyer can help you defend your preferences for custody in court if your spouse disagrees with you. Mistreatment can involve physical, emotional, and sexual abuse. Neglect and abandonment also count as forms of mistreatment. 

It should be noted that not all children suffer prolonged negative consequences of abuse. Psychological effects can depend on their age and how often the abuse occurs. In some cases, child mistreatment can result in the development of mental disorders or substance use later in adolescence or adulthood. Depression and suicidal thoughts also become possibilities. 

Depending on the age of a child, abuse or neglect can lead to developmental and social delays. Children who are mistreated by their parents can form unhealthy attachments that can impact the way they view future relationships with others.