Divorce is a challenging process, and it becomes even more complicated when children are involved. Determining child custody and visitation arrangements can be an emotional and contentious aspect of the divorce process. This blog post will discuss some key considerations and tips for navigating child custody and visitation during an Oklahoma divorce, as well as how the Oklahoma Child Support Guidelines can help provide a framework for these important decisions.
Understand the Different Types of Custody in Oklahoma
In Oklahoma, there are two types of custody: legal and physical. Legal custody refers to the right to make major decisions regarding the child's upbringing, such as education, medical care, and religious upbringing. Physical custody refers to where the child will live. Both legal and physical custody can be either sole (awarded to one parent) or joint (shared between both parents). Understanding the different types of custody and their implications can help you better navigate the negotiation process and reach an arrangement that is in the best interest of your child.
Be Prepared to Demonstrate Your Parenting Abilities
In determining child custody and visitation arrangements, the court will consider the best interests of the child. To demonstrate that you are a fit parent and should be granted custody or visitation rights, be prepared to provide evidence of your involvement in your child's life. This can include documentation of your attendance at school events, medical appointments, and extracurricular activities, as well as character references from teachers, coaches, and other individuals who can attest to your parenting abilities.
Consider Mediation or Collaborative Divorce
Traditional litigation can be a lengthy and costly process, and it may not always result in the most favorable outcome for your family. Mediation or collaborative divorce can provide a more amicable and efficient alternative for resolving child custody and visitation disputes. In mediation, a neutral third party helps facilitate communication and negotiation between the divorcing spouses, while collaborative divorce involves each spouse working with their own attorney to reach an agreement. Both of these methods can help preserve a positive co-parenting relationship and reduce the emotional stress on your child.
Familiarize Yourself with the Oklahoma Child Support Guidelines
Child support is an important aspect of any custody and visitation arrangement, as it ensures that the child's financial needs are met. The Oklahoma Child Support Guidelines provide a formula for calculating child support based on the parents' income, the number of children, and the custody arrangement. Familiarizing yourself with these guidelines can help you better understand your financial obligations and ensure that your child receives the support they need.
Consult with an Experienced Family Law Attorney
Navigating the complexities of child custody and visitation during an Oklahoma divorce can be overwhelming. An experienced family law attorney can provide valuable guidance and support throughout the process, helping you understand your rights and options and advocating for the best interests of your child. At David C. Fisher, P.C., we offer a comprehensive guide through the Oklahoma divorce process, ensuring that you and your child are well-equipped to face the challenges ahead.
Navigating child custody and visitation during an Oklahoma divorce can be a complex and emotional process. By understanding the different types of custody, being prepared to demonstrate your parenting abilities, considering mediation or collaborative divorce, familiarizing yourself with the Oklahoma Child Support Guidelines, and consulting with an experienced family law attorney, you can help ensure that your child's best interests are protected throughout the divorce process.