Two cases involved Tennessee decrees of custody of children which altered the rights of custody prescribed by earlier decrees in other states. In both cases the court of appeals held the foreign decrees were not conclusive on the Tennessee courts because of change of circumstances since they were rendered. One of the foreign decrees was not conclusive, it is believed, for the further reason that in the out-of-state proceeding the custody of the children was not litigated and was evidently based on the consent of the parents. At this term the Supreme Court of the United States held such a consent decree should not be res judicata in a case which "involved the custody of children where the public interest is strong,"" for "Unfortunately, experience has shown that the question of custody, so vital to a child's happiness and well-being, frequently cannot be left to the discretion of parents."
Elliott E. Cheatham,
Conflict of Laws -- 1962 Tennessee Survey,
16 Vanderbilt Law Review
Available at: https://scholarship.law.vanderbilt.edu/vlr/vol16/iss3/10