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Tennessee drivers are now required to pay child support if they kill a parent while driving drunk.

The bill passed in the Tennessee House and Senate in April and was signed into law by Gov. Bill Lee.

“As I promised, I will do what it takes to protect the future of our most valuable resources, our children,” said representative Mike Hall, who sponsored the bill. He added, “Tennesseans care for each other and we will do everything in our power to hold people accountable who chose to do harm.”

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It’s illegal to drive drunk in every state. One person was killed in a drunk-driving crash every 45 minutes in the United States in 2020.

The bill leaves it up to the courts to determine the amount of child support a drunk driver will pay if they kill a parent.

The drunk driver’s income will be taken into account, as well as the child’s financial needs.

Drivers who are sent to prison will have up to one year after their release to begin making payments.

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The bill also states that if the child’s surviving parent or guardian sues the defendant and obtains a judgment before the sentencing court, no child support payments will be ordered.

If a decision in a civil lawsuit comes after the sentencing court assigns child support, then the amount of judgment awarded in the civil action will be deducted from the child maintenance order.

Oklahoma could be the second state to force drunk drivers to pay child support.