In Oklahoma, a child custody order sometimes can be modified, whether both parents agree to the modification or not. This article explains how you can modify your custody order in Oklahoma.
In order to modify your custody order in Oklahoma, a “Motion to Modify Custody Order” must be filed, typically with the same court from which the custody order was issued. In this motion, you must present the reason you believe the modification should be granted. The court may only modify a custody order if there is a permanent and material change in the circumstances of your case. In other words, the court will not consider modifying a custody order based on minor changes, such as a small increase or decrease in income.
A material change in circumstance is a rather broad term, so it’s the courts responsibility to decide whether the change in circumstance constitutes something significant enough to warrant a modification of your final custody order or not. In all cases, the changes must be permanent, material and substantial enough to affect the best interests of the child.
After you have filed the Motion to Modify, a hearing will be set to where both parties can provide evidence and make arguments. This is your opportunity to convince the court that there are significant changes circumstances that warrant a modification of your custody order. This may include anything from interference with visitation rights, drug or alcohol abuse, sexual immorality or sexual abuse, or if the custodial parent moves to another state. In some cases, if the child is old enough, his or her desire to change custody will be sufficient.
For a “Sole Custody Order” to be modified, the court will look for evidence that demonstrates a change in custody, for example from on parent to the other, will be in the best interest of the child. To modify a “Joint custody Order”, either parent must demonstrate that, under the circumstance, he or she and the other parent are unable to work together in the best interest of the child and that sole custody will be a better solution.
If the court finds that there are sufficient grounds for a modification, a modification will be granted. It is recommended however that before going to court, you talk to an experienced divorce attorney about what’s going on and see if the attorney believes that you have sufficient ground to request a modification in your custody order. You don’t want to ignore major changes, but neither do you want to run to court every time there is some minor issue.
Free Consultation: Tulsa Child Custody Modification Attorney
To find out more about how to modify child custody in Oklahoma, contact the family law attorney in Tulsa at Divorce Law Office of Tulsa: 918-924-5526. We offer free, no obligation consultations. If you prefer you may send your question using the “Ask the Lawyer” form on the right side of this page.