All You Need to Know About Filing for Divorce in Oklahoma

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divorce in Oklahoma

There are many reasons couples get divorced, and no matter what country you plan on doing it in, there are typically rules or laws that govern it. Grounds for divorce in Oklahoma are defined as the regulations that specify the circumstances under which divorce is allowed. A divorce trial is usually assumed, and the participants must state the reasons for wanting one in front of the judge and attorney at law.

In some states, the couples must live apart for a few months before being able to be granted a divorce. However, if this happens before you ask for a divorce then this is not taken into consideration ins some states. 

In the USA, for instance, divorces are allowed for those who are at fault, and in some instances even when they are not at fault, but specific grounds need to be met for this to take place, Check out https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grounds_for_divorce_(United_States) to find out what they are. in which case none of the individuals are held accountable to blame for the separation. 

Grounds for Divorce

There are several grounds onto which separation is considered, some of which are mentioned below:

Adultery. Possibly one of the most common ones, adultery accounts for almost half of divorces in America and according to the American Psychological Association, almost 40% of separation is caused due to infidelity, and only 17% remain together after a spouse has been cheated on. Men who cheat have a higher chance of staying in the marriage and over 60% are still married, as opposed to the other 30% who are divorced.

What the above numbers show us is that those who cheat is far more likely to separate than those who don’t. However, this is not necessarily the most prevalent reason for couples not being together anymore and marriages being torn apart. There are others. 

Abandonment. Humans are meant to have relationships, be it with their friends, partners, colleagues, parents, and so on. We are made to have companionship and often when we don’t it can lead to side-effects such as loneliness, depression, self-harm, and some psychological journals have suggested that “not having friends is as harmful as being an alcoholic”, this article dives into this topic here.

This is a topic that has been studied for over 40 years; scientists and researchers have been covering all angles of how relationships, or lack thereof, affect humans, and animals. When it comes to abandonment this plays a part in marriage break ups when one of the other partners fills a need for a job that entails spending copious amounts of time away from home, such as joining the military or employment assignments required to be worked out of town for most of the year.

Domestic Violence and Cruelty. Unfortunately, also a very common factor in the extraction of marriages, and in some cases restraining orders are also a further measure taken by law. If one or the other spouse has proof of violence and mistreatment, they have a strong case against the assailant. 

However, for this to take place, the affected partner must prove that the violence is making living with the partner intolerable. In most cases, if the cruelty or violence reoccurs, then there is strong ground for it but single or random acts are usually not considered.

Other reasons for couple separation can also include aspects such as religious differences, prior criminal convictions, cultural differences, disease, sickness or severe illness, substance abuse, mental incapacity, sexual issues, or financial problems. So when it comes to particular states the rules may differ and the process of filing for a divorce as well. Below we look at Oklahoma and its process of divorce.

Filing for Divorce in Oklahoma

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While you divorce in Oklahoma, you can file for separation on your own or by use of a lawyer. If you represent yourself it is known as ‘Pro Se’, which translates as ‘for self’. The correct authorities, such as divorce lawyers or attorneys at law, will draft all your papers for you, and the good ones usually help you with information regarding how to file, where to file, and with whom at the Clerk’s office to file.

These authorities are typically there to help you when you get stuck and often have prepared documentation to give you, which includes the correct forms as well as an all inclusive guide to filing for divorce in Oklahoma either on paper or they can consult you on it before the process. This would entail a 4-step process which would include:

  1. You would need to take the Petition to a Notary Public, who will sign the Request as well as the Affidavit, and get it Notarized.
  2. After which you need to make 3 copies of the document and take all three to the county clerk’s office, where you will file the divorce request.
  3. Once that is done you need to wait between 1 to 2 days before your spouse signs the appeal, as by law in all the Oklahoma counties. 
  4. The last step, 4, is to see the judge. Both you and your spouse will be sent in front of the judge, who will based on the evidence the clerk provides them, will make the final decision. The county clerk’s office will provide you with a date for this.

Points to Note

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If you take any document to the clerk’s office that you and your partner have signed, and the date on the document is not a minimum of one day after you signed it at the clerk’s office, then consider it void. This means you will need to repeat the process of signing it at the office and then wait a minimum of one day then give it to your spouse to sign. This is an important rule to abide by.

Two pieces of documents that a partner should sign in the instance where you do not have any children are the Decree of Dissolution of Marriage and the Waiver of Appearance. 

This is to say that the defendant does not need to be present for the arraignment, more on this can be found directly from the court’s website in this link. In other words, your spouse can waive his or her right to appear at the court. The majority of the cases follow this procedure where only the petitioner is needed in front of the judge. 

Those that have children need several additional documents, such as a child support computation form, a custody plan (who gets the kids, visiting hours, etc.) and the time it takes to get this process completed may take longer.  The majority of it is very simple if you work with the right authorities to help you during this stressful time.  

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