Oklahoma City, OK asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Civil Rights for Oklahoma

Q: In Oklahoma, a child out of wedlock and there is no custody order in place, can either parent keep child away from them?

Child stays with his mother, attends school and daycare in this town by mother, and father lives 45 minutes away only sees him once a week. Father has multiple times threatened to not bring child back. Is there anything the mother can do ?

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In Oklahoma, when a child is born out of wedlock and there is no custody order in place, both parents generally have equal rights to the child. However, this situation can become problematic if one parent threatens to withhold the child from the other, as you've described with the father's actions.

If the mother is concerned about the father's threats to not return the child, it would be advisable for her to seek a formal custody order from the court. This order would legally establish custody and visitation arrangements, and both parents would be required to adhere to these terms.

In the process of establishing a custody order, the court will consider various factors to determine what is in the best interest of the child. This includes stability, the child’s current living arrangement, the child's relationship with each parent, and any potential risks to the child’s welfare.

In the meantime, if the mother fears for the child's safety or if the father actually fails to return the child as agreed, she may need to seek legal intervention immediately. This could involve contacting law enforcement or an attorney for urgent assistance.

Remember, the well-being and safety of the child are of utmost importance. Establishing a formal custody arrangement can help provide structure and legal protection for both the child and the parents. Consulting with an attorney experienced in family law can provide the mother with guidance on how to proceed in this situation.

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.