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Payment of child support through informal negotiations -- Part II

In Tennessee, as in most other states in the country, child support is normally the obligation of the non-custodial parent. In an earlier post, we discussed the three modes of child support payment. The first is when parents come to an agreement about child support with or without the support of their attorneys which is an out-of-court settlement. In the third option, a child support order can be determined by a court.

The second mode of informal negotiation is alternate dispute resolution, and with this method, the parents come together to resolve child support issues in a collaborative manner. This can be quite beneficial in deciding child support matters. ADR can depend on the level of disagreement that parents have on child support matters and the willingness with which they wish to resolve the issues.

The ADR process takes place in an informal setting. Therefore, any issue, even child support matters, can be resolved quickly. In the ADR process, the parents get the opportunity to sit together with their attorneys and resolve the child support disputes. A third party need not interfere and does not have any role to play in resolving these disputes.

One type of structured ADR is arbitration. Here, a neutral third party makes decisions after listening to the arguments and counter-arguments of both spouses. Then, an arbitrator makes the decision in all child support matters. This decision is not necessarily final and the spouses can still resolve disputes in a Tennessee court.

The expected outcome of an ADR is a written document on child support that outlines the child support amount and how the payments will be made.

Source: FindLaw, "Child Support by Agreement," Accessed on June 11, 2015

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