Oklahoma Divorce & Separation
Obtaining a legal separation or divorce is common in every state. The rules and laws that govern these processes, however, can differ significantly from one state to the next, and it’s important to know the particulars of your state. What are the requirements for getting a divorce in Oklahoma? Is mediation a requirement before you can get an Oklahoma divorce? What is the law on Oklahoma annulments? Find the answers to your Oklahoma divorce questions here.
Oklahoma Legal Separation:
Legal separations are allowed in Oklahoma and granted when either party is resident at the time of the petition. The court may modify or add to the separation decree in order to provide support and maintenance (either from a spouse or the property of either spouse) for minor children, and possible spousal support. Separations are allowed for the same causes as those for divorces.
Grounds for Divorce/Fault – No Fault:
Oklahoma has both fault and no-fault grounds for divorce. For no-fault divorces, the parties need simply show incompatability for grounds. A fault-based divorce, on the other hand, requires more specific grounds to be established, for instance:
- Abandonment for at least one year
- Wife’s pregnancy by another man at the time of their marriage
- Extreme cruelty
- Fraudulent contract
- Habitual drunkenness
- Gross neglect of duty
- Imprisonment of the respondent party for a felony
- Insanity for at least 5 years
Residency/Where to File for Divorce:
To file for divorce, either party must be an actual resident of the state for at least 6 months before filing the petition. The action must be filed in the petitioner/applicant’s local circuit (if a resident for 30 days prior), or in the respondent’s local circuit.
Oklahoma Divorce/Child Support/Child Custody Lawyers:
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Divorce Mediation in Oklahoma:
For marriages with children, the court has the right to order a reconciliation conference for the parents and/or counseling for the children, which would likely involve the services of a well-trained, court-appointed mediator. Parenting classes or any other type of educational activity may be substituted for the divorce mediation, depending on the court’s assessment of what is appropriate and in the best interests of the children. The mediation route (also called “alternative dispute resolution”) is particularly appropriate where there are issues that could be resolved and agreed upon amicably through a conference rather than forcing the parties, the children, and the court system through unnecessary litigation.
An annulment is a court declaration that your marriage is legally invalid. In other words, rather than ending a marriage via divorce, an annulment is a declaration that the marriage was never valid to begin with, for reasons including: consent obtained by fraud, duress, one party’s minor status at time of consent, one party’s lacking mental capacity, incest, and same sex. The underage grounds are valid until the parties obtain legal age and freely cohabit.
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