Divorce is a difficult time for anybody, but if there is a special-needs child in the balance the stakes are much higher and things can become much more complex. In the event that you are going through a divorce with a child who has special needs in Tennessee, you likely have concerns that other parents will not need to consider.

 According to the Special Needs Alliance, coming up with a solid parenting plan and how the child’s transition to adulthood will look is absolutely paramount. In the event that the divorce between you and your soon-to-be ex-partner is not amicable, then adequate legal representation is needed for both sides. It is important to be aware that child support calculators tend to not take the expenses related to a special-needs child into consideration. Additionally, child support may be counted against governmental benefits like Medicare and SSI, so both you and your ex-partner must keep this in mind.

 This is particularly salient in the event that your child will require long-term care. In the majority of divorces, child support ends when the child reaches the age of majority or when he or she graduates university. With many special-needs children, the parents must face the reality of managing a lifelong situation. It is important for both parents to understand if the child will move into a care facility upon the age of majority or if one or both parents are committed to lifelong maintenance.

 It is also important for both parties to draw up living wills and estate plans that provide provisions for the care of the child in the event of the death of one or both parents.

If you are in Tennessee and have questions about rules regarding divorce and custody, call the Law Office of Gregory D. Smith, 931/647-1299 or visit Mr. Smith is listed in Mid-South Super Lawyers and is A-V rated by Martindale-Hubbell. You can read a featured article about Mr. Smith in the November, 2019 ABA Journal,(the national magazine of the American Bar Association), at