In Oklahoma, every case that involves children, whether it is a divorce, paternity, or modification involves the issue of child custody and visitation. The court is under a duty to inquire as to whether the parties have children, and if so, to whom to award custody and visitation.  Child custody and visitation are about two things (1) who makes legal decisions for the children and (2) the amount of time the children spend with each parent.

In a sense, child custody and can be boiled down to the following two questions:

  1. Who makes decisions for the children?
  2. How much time do the children spend with each parent?

In Oklahoma, there are many laws on child custody and visitation. However, not matter what the law, the main statute on child custody is found in Title 43 O.S. § 112 and requires:

In any action in which there are minor unmarried children in awarding or modifying the custody of the child . . .  the court shall . . . consider what appears to be in the best interests of the child.

Joint vs. Sole Custody

Many people wonder about what the difference is between Joint and Sole Custody. One thing to make clear is that joint and sole custody have nothing to do with how much time the child spends with either parent. Instead, these terms relate to who has legal decision making authority over a child.

Related Articles

Child Custody & Visitation Issue Questions

Below is a list of questions that need to be answered in any child custody and visitation case.

Legal Custody

  • Will the parents make legal decisions for the children jointly?
    • If yes, how will the parents resolve disagreements?
      • Will one parent be the tie breaker?
    • If no, who will be the decision maker for the children?

Physical Custody

  • How will the children’s time be divided between each parent’s home?
    • Will the parties share the children equally?
      • If no, who will have the children the majority of the time
        • How much time will the non-custodial parent have?
  • Will the schedule be different in the summer?
    • If yes, what will the schedule be?
  •     How will the parents divide holidays?
  • How will the parents exchange the children?
  • Are there any transportation costs that need to be divided?

FAQs

Tools
More Articles
June 24, 2019 in Property Division

Who gets the house in a divorce?

One of the most important questions many people have is what happens to their house in a divorce. This is the house that you've saved for, searched for, and expected…
Read More
March 10, 2019 in Child Support

How do I calculate income for child support?

In Oklahoma, we have an official formula under state law to figure child support. This formula is based on three main factors: Number of children, Incomes of the parents, How…
Read More
February 17, 2019 in Alimony

How do you modify support alimony?

Support alimony can be modified. A party can ask the court to modify or terminate a support alimony award by filing a motion with the court. The judge must then…
Read More
February 14, 2014 in Child Support

Children, Divorce and Taxes: Part 2

In the previous article of Children, Divorce and Taxes, I discussed the Internal Revenue Service rules for which parent can claim the children on their income taxes without a court…
Read More

Other Related Practice Areas