Family Law Attorney, Oklahoma

Frequently Asked Question

What is a no-fault divorce?

A no-fault divorce is just what is sounds like. A party does not have to be proven at fault to cause the divorce. The ground for divorce is incompatibility or irreconcilable differences. It simply means the parties don’t get along well enough to stay married.

What factors do courts consider when deciding who gets custody of the children?

A very important factor that is often overlooked by the parties in a divorce is the courts pay close attention to which parent best fosters the parent-child relationship with the other parent. Of course, basic things like the ability to care for a child.

Why is the parent-child relationship so important in divorce?

A child gets their identity from their parents. A child will pattern after the behavior they observe from their parents. Just because the parents can’t get along the children still need both parents.

Will I have to pay alimony or spousal support?

Alimony is a very individual, case by case situation. Factors that can be considered does one party need money to transition to being single. Does the other party have the ability to pay? Has one party been a stay at home husband or wife throughout the marriage and needs help retraining to enter the workforce.

How is child support determined?

Child support is a calculation determined by state statute. The income of both parties, the number of children, the cost of health insurance, the cost of child care and how many overnights each parent has the child are all factors that go into the formula.

Why do I need an attorney for divorce?

You are entering into an order that will determine child custody, the division of your personal property, division of your real property, divide debts, finances, retirements etc. An order that separates the most important things in your life. If you make a mistake on how you do the divorce not everything can be fixed. Some of my most difficult cases are trying to fix mistakes people made on the “do it yourself divorces. The problem is not everything can be fixed.

What should I look for when selecting a divorce attorney?

Experience in family law is the first criteria. An attorney that is candid with you. An attorney that doesn’t just tell you what you want to hear. You need to know if your expectations are realistic. Will this attorney be available to you if you have questions or concerns, will they keep you informed?

How do I prepare for my 1st meeting with a Divorce Attorney?

Make a list of all of your questions to take in with you. Going to an attorney’s office will make you nervous. If you have a list of your concerns and questions the meeting will be less stressful and you will learn more. Do not bring minor children to the appointment.

What documents do I need to provide to my Divorce Attorney?

Of course, the full name of you and your spouse, addresses for you and for your spouse, where each works, contact information and addresses for both you and your spouse, Helpful information is proof of income of both parties, tax returns help. The date of your marriage, where you were married, if you are separated, the date of separation, name, and a DOB of children. How long you have lived in Oklahoma and where you have lived the most recent past 30 days.A list of property, names, and dates of birth dates of children. Any unusual situations that you want to mention.

How Long Will it Take me to get a Divorce?

If you do not have children the quickest you can be divorced in Oklahoma is 10 days from the date of filing. If you have minor children the quickest you can be divorced is 90 days from the date of filing. It is very rare that divorces happen this quick. The time frame is controlled by how much disagreement there is to work through. The Judge’s docket also plays a big role, quick court dates can be hard to get.

Who Will get Custody of our Children?

If both parents are fit and proper the parents may be candidates for joint custody. Otherwise, there is no way to know. Many factors come into play.

Do my Bills Matter to the Amount of Child Support I Must pay?

Your bills do not normally affect the amount of child support. There is an exception if one party is paying a high marital bill the court can reduce the parties’ gross income which will, in turn, reduce child support because that party is paying the bill.

Will I Have to Move out of our House?

During the pendency of the divorce it seldom works that both parties stay in the house. Someone will usually move out on a temporary basis until the decision about what to do with the house is made.

What Happens to our Property?

The property will be divided.

Who Will pay our Bills While we are Divorcing?

The parties will pay their bills. A temporary order can be entered to designate who keeps what property on a temporary basis and who pays which bills. The temporary order stays in effect until the divorce is final.

Do I get Alimony if my Spouse has Committed Adultery?

A court cannot punish a spouse that committed adultery by ordering him/her to pay alimony.

When can I Date Again?

Ideally, wait until you are divorced.

Is my Spouse Entitled to a Share of my Company Retirement Benefits?

If the retirement benefits were accumulated during the marriage, normally yes the benefits are a marital property that will be divided.

How Does the Firm Charge for its Services?

A retainer is paid in the beginning. The retainer is deposited into a trust account. The attorney bills an hourly rate against the retainer. If the retainer is depleted and the case is still ongoing the client will be expected to replenish their trust account.

If one parent moves out and leaves the kids with the other parent, does it hurt the moving parent's chances of getting custody at a later date?

The decision to leave the children with the other parent can affect custody. A lot of factors come into play. How often does the parent that moved out see the children? Why did the parent move out?

Does custody always go to just one parent?

No, parents can share custody jointly.

Is mediation the best approach to solving disagreements about child custody?

Mediation is always a good starting point. Mediation allows both parties to talk about the issues that concern them. The mediator is a neutral third party. It is much less stress for the parties to talk with a mediator than it is to go to a trial in front of a judge. In mediation, the parties have more control over the outcome in regard to their own children rather than turn the decision over to a judge that knows very little about them.

Who determines how much visitation is reasonable and fair?

If the parties cannot reach an agreement the Court will decide.

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