Lawyers, Answer Questions  & Get Points Log In
Questions Answered by Stefan Otterson
1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Family Law and Adoption for Alaska on
Q: I have a child that’s been living with me for 13 1/2 years. She isn’t my blood or my adopted child but is my daughter.

I want to know how can I keep her with me permanently. She doesn’t like going over to the other persons house. She fights me because she hates it there. I just need help. The adoptive parent has never given me a dime for this child.

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Dec 17, 2017

The only permanent solution to this problem is adoption. That is something you would probably need legal help with, particularly if the legal parents are't cooperative. It is possible to do an adoption even if the legal parents aren't on board, but it might require a trial, which can... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Alaska on
Q: Does my mom have rights to her grandchild even though they took my rights?they never contacted my mom about this.
Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Dec 9, 2017

Yes. Any blood relative would have priority over an unrelated foster home. Your mother needs to contact OCS and request placement. They should place with her as long as she has a clean record. If they don't, she can ask the court to order it, and OCS would have to explain why she's... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Alaska on
Q: Daughter with dad riding in car high speed chace he got out ran and left her. Ocs took my kid can i get my rights back

They took my rights can i fight to get them back wo i can have my baby back

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Dec 9, 2017

If you haven't already, contact OCS immediately. Ask them for your child. If they say no, ask for a copy of the Petition they have filed with the court. Take the Petition to the courthouse, and go to the Children's office in the basement. Show them the case number and ask for the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Alaska on
Q: Is there a higher child support calculation if the non-custodial parent moves across country reducing his visitaation?

Not only did he move but he wuit his job taking a lower pay job and cancelled his Christmas visit.

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Nov 27, 2017

When you say non-custodial, it sounds as if you have primary custody (70% or more custody time). In that case, the other parent's visitation percentage does not change the support calculation (it's the same between 70 and 100% of the time). If the other parent wants the child support... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Q: If I have full physical custody of my child (shared legal),can I relocate (out-of-state) with no further filings needed?

I work with my daughter's mother regarding visitation, but there is no visitation agreement actually filed with the courts.

Just inquiring whether or not I need file anything if I have full physical custody of my child (shared legal) if I can relocate (out-of-state) with no further... Read more »

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Nov 27, 2017

There is quite a bit of grey area in the answer to your question. The best practice is to work out your agreement and then submit it to the court to get an updated custody order. You may want to run the agreement by a lawyer before signing if you have any questions, and to help you put it into... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Alaska on
Q: My boyfriend took our daughter to alaska

My boyfriend took our daughter to Alaska to "visit" and is refusing to come back to Idaho. We do not have a custody agreement, what can I do?

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Nov 24, 2017

Of course, you should first do everything you can to reach an agreement. You can't just assume that he has to come back. If you're not going to live in the same state, then you'll need to find a way to share custody. Neither of you gets to just keep your daughter. If you... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Alaska on
Q: If my custody order was modified and I was given full custody does that cancel out the details of my last order ?

The old custody agreement had split custody and talked about the details regarding pfd’s, taxes, sharing of address, daycare names, that sort of stuff. The new order gives me full legal custody and him supervised visits 3x a month in a public place for 4 hours each time. It does not discuss... Read more »

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Nov 3, 2017

Normally a modification order only affects the things it addresses, such as the custody schedule. If it doesn't include a new provision for PFD's etc, then the provision of the old order would continue in effect. Most modification orders will state that explicitly, but if the other... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Juvenile Law, Divorce, Family Law and Child Custody for Alaska on
Q: My 17 year old is being criminally detained in juvenile detention. In this scenerio have my rights been terminated?

I have sole legal custody & primary physical of all 4 kids with my felon ex in another state getting visitation. My son & ex believe that I have lost custody in this scenerio & that I cant put my son into residential treatment or theraputic foster care (Im not comfortable with him... Read more »

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Nov 2, 2017

Your rights have not been terminated, and your custody order remains in effect. Physical custody may have been temporarily given to the state (though there's a big difference between temporary detention pending trial, and being committed to a facility at the final disposition hearing). The... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Divorce for Alaska on
Q: How do i file for divorce?
Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Nov 1, 2017

You can either hire an attorney to draw up the paperwork or file it yourself using the resources provided by the court system. To make that decision, go to the court's website: http://courts.alaska.gov/shc/representing-yourself-info.htm.

Note that there is a phone number for the...
Read more »

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Q: If someone gets their kids taken by OCS and has a cousin thats safe to take the kids would they be able to?

Would they have to prove that the person is legally their cousin or would ocs just approve it if their a safe home and want the children

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Oct 23, 2017

OCS is supposed to give preference to blood relatives. There's a streamlined licensing process for relatives. However, someone who already has a relationship with the kids should also get preference (this isn't a statutory right, but it just makes sense.) OCS is short on foster... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Q: If I have sole legal and physical custody of my child, dad has visitation, and I die, will he be awarded custody?

My daughter is 14, and visitation with her father is out of state, whenever he and I agree to. Since I have sole legal and physical custody am I able to designate in a will where she will live if something happens to me, or will sole custody automatically be awarded to her father?

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Sep 18, 2017

The custody order only divides up parental rights between the two of you. If either parent dies, that division is no longer relevant. The surviving parent would have priority over any other person unless a court determines otherwise. That determination would have to be done based on the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Wisconsin on
Q: A payor pays support in two seperate case,the child in the first case passed away.Can I ask for an increase? In Wi

Both cases have arrears owed.I am not being greedy but the payor only pays 50.00 on my child's case if and when they do pay!

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Sep 18, 2017

Yes, assuming your child support was based on an income calculation that deducted support paid to the child from a previous relationship. However, the $50 amount suggests that the payor's income is very low, so adding that previous support amount back into his/her income may not bring the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Child Support for Alaska on
Q: My Ex had financial trouble lost her house in Nassau and send the kids back for a year to me. Do I pay for that yea
Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Sep 3, 2017

I assume you're wondering about child support. That goes based on your court custody order, and it doesn't change until you get it modified by the court. If you don't have a court order, you may be able to do the modification through CSSD, if they're involved. The key point... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Alaska on
Q: How do I get custody of my daughter if I know she's in an unsafe environment with her mother?

My ex has a drug problem and has been in and out of rehab multiple times. She has lost her government assistance and has no job to my knowledge. My 2 year daughter is picking up bad habits because my ex smokes weed, cigarettes, and possible other substances in front of her. My ex also has... Read more »

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Sep 2, 2017

If you already have a custody order, file a Motion to Modify Custody. If you don't have a custody order yet, file a Complaint for Custody. The court system has forms online for this purpose. DR-411 is the Complaint, and DR-700 is the Motion to Modify.

It wouldn't hurt to talk to...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Juvenile Law for Alaska on
Q: my daughter has been living with her father for 3 years now and wants to move back to live with me.

I have custody of her but her father and I agreed to let her move to Washington with him. now she has run away and wants to come back. what are my rights as her parent and if I picked her up or flew her home would there be any legal actions he could take against me?

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Sep 2, 2017

If you have custody under a court order, there would be little risk for you to fly her home. The important thing is to keep the father in the loop. Just keep your daughter safe and work together with her father. If you can't do both, err on the side of keeping your daughter safe. Just... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Alaska on
Q: Hi. My i recently told my ex-gf to move out, and that our daughter stays with me in a stable household.

I had no intent to keep our daughter from her, and she knew that. But, when i let her take her for a walk the day after, she didnt come back. She took off and his from me and now is in another city. She filed for custody and child support. Is this legal?

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Jul 27, 2017

Yes, it is completely legal. Until you get a custody order, you both have equal custodial rights. Hiding from you isn't a good thing, but since she filed for custody, you now have her address and a forum for determining how to arrange custody between the two of you. If you ask for it, the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Juvenile Law for Alaska on
Q: If I enroll in college before I turn 18 can my mother remove me from college for any reason

I would apply for federal aid

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on Jul 23, 2017

This may be a matter of policy at the particular college you pick. In general, until you turn 18 your parents have legal custody of you. This means they have decision making authority, and they are the ones who are supposed to sign admissions paperwork, etc. However, some organizations make... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Family Law for Alaska on
Q: Foster parents rights to adoption what are the legal options?

We have had a child for 3 years since she came out of the NICU at 41 days. She was born addicted to heroin. Her mother has only seen her three times in almost three years. They have 15 months to show improvement. No relatives were found in Alaska to take her and out of the blue one shows up a great... Read more »

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on May 31, 2017

You should first do everything you can to work things out with the social worker. If possible, you should try to get the guardian ad litem to advocate in your favor. If you have no luck with the social worker, go up the chain to his/her supervisor, and on up. OCS has broad discretion to make... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Alaska on
Q: What does "I further allege the following as my affirmation defenses" mean in a divorce answer filing?
Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on May 7, 2017

It probably means the person who wrote the Answer was trying to sound legal. He/she probably meant "affirmative" defenses. Certain types of defenses need to be specifically listed in an Answer. If a party lists them, it just preserves the right to argue them later. However, most of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Alaska on
Q: Judge awards property to spouse in divorce.

Other spouse won't take his name off deed/tittle reason because he doesn't wan't the siblings to have it which she would leave to them.

Stefan Otterson
Stefan Otterson answered on May 5, 2017

If your former spouse refuses to comply with a requirement of your property division order, you can file a motion to enforce the order. You would file it under the divorce case number.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.