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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Oct 10, 2012

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Helen Sfikas Rogers, Lawrence James Kamm, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Stephen G. Butler.

Attorneys 2:

Roger Alan Maness, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Michele G. Butler.

Judge(s): COTTRELL

The parents of a three year old girl were divorced by order of a Georgia court, and their settlement agreement was incorporated into the divorce degree. The parties subsequently moved to this state, and after several years Father petitioned the Tennessee court to name him as the child’s primary residential parent. He also asked the court to modify his child support. After a hearing, the trial court declared that Mother would remain the child’s primary residential parent, and it granted Father additional visitation. The court also found that Father was not entitled by law to a reduction in his child support obligation, but it adopted Mother’s proposal that the obligation be reduced by about one fourth. On appeal, Father contends that the trial court erred by failing to apply the Tennessee child support guidelines to determine his support obligation. We vacate the child support order and remand for setting Father’s support using the Child Support Guidelines. Despite concerns expressed by Father, we find the trial court had subject matter jurisdiction.