Divorce is one of the most difficult things you will ever have to contend with. The end of your marriage will generate a range of emotions within you. However, you cannot allow the pain, anger, frustration, and fear get the better of you. It is important to protect your material interests, and if you have children, your parental rights.
Grounds for Oklahoma Divorce
Under Oklahoma law, divorce is known as dissolution of marriage. The law offers fault-based divorce and divorce on the ground of incompatibility, which functions like a no-fault divorce.
Incompatibility means that you and your spouse cannot get along with each other, and one of you must be willing to testify that this is true and that you want a divorce. Additionally, under this ground, parents that have children under 18 must attend an educational program that explains the impact divorce has on kids.
Although this is the most common reason couples choose to get divorced, it may be in your interest to pursue fault-based grounds for your divorce. The grounds for a fault-based divorce include:
Cheating that results in pregnancy
Spouse is imprisoned as a convicted felon
You may be compelled to go through with a fault-based divorce if your spouse is violent or otherwise unsuitable to be a parent, and you are seeking sole custody of your children. You may also seek a fault-based divorce to bolster your claim for spousal support.
Requirements for Divorce in Oklahoma
In order to file for divorce in Oklahoma, there are a couple of requirements you must fulfill. First, you must meet the residency requirement. To do so, you or your spouse must reside in the state for at least half a year. One of you is also required to have lived in the county where you plan to divorce for at least thirty days.
Second, Oklahoma has a waiting period requirement. If you have children younger than 18, you will need to wait at least three months after you file before the judge will grant the final divorce order. You must also wait six months before you remarry. The only exception to the latter rule is if you remarry your ex or they pass away before the six months have elapsed.
Documents You Will Need to Prepare and File
When you begin the divorce process, the first thing you need to do is file your divorce papers with the court. All your paperwork must be filed in the county in which you currently live.
Since you are initiating the divorce, you are the filing party, which means you will need to submit various documents in order for the court to start your case.
Your divorce paperwork should include:
The written request for a divorce
An affidavit, or a written declaration, in which you swear that all the information in the petition is correct
Identifying information about your children like their initials and birthdate, and where they have lived in the five years preceding the divorce.
Notice of Summons to serve papers to your soon-to-be-ex.
Once the paperwork is filed, the law requires you to provide copies of all documents to your spouse. To do so, you will need to serve the papers to your spouse, which can be a tricky and often difficult endeavor. You can serve them through the sheriff’s department or a private process server. The latter is often the best means of completing this task, as process server companies have developed numerous strategies to get the job done.
Disclosing Assets and Debt
Another thing to consider in your divorce is the division of your property and debt. You and your spouse will be required to disclose all your respective assets and debts. You should make no attempt to hide anything from the court. Doing so can result in stiff financial penalties.
You should also ensure that your spouse is playing by the rules. This is especially important if you are going through a high net worth divorce. Your Norman divorce attorney can help you in this matter by hiring a forensic accountant who will trace and track every penny owned by your spouse.
Get the Help You Need
A skilled Norman divorce lawyer can help you decide the best course of action to take when getting a divorce. At Redhawk Law, we will help you through every step of the divorce. From filling out and submitting the necessary paperwork to making negotiations and reaching a settlement, our team will exceed your expectations and resolve your case as efficiently as possible.
Have questions about the divorce process? Call us at (405) 266-5072 to discuss your case today.