Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Alaska

Q: What can I file to gain emergency custody if my coparent is suicidal?

My soon to be ex is acting unstable in online videos and has said he wishes he was dead. I am worried about my child’s safety. What can I do?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Blake Fulton Quackenbush
Blake Fulton Quackenbush
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Anchorage, AK
  • Licensed in Alaska

A: In Alaska, seeking emergency relief, such as filing a petition for custody followed by a motion on expedited consideration for interim custody, can be complex and may have various outcomes depending certain factors. A consultation with a knowledgeable lawyer in Alaska may help in many ways.

Decisions regarding the award of child custody are governed by AS 25.20.060, which provides in relevant part:

"(a) If there is a dispute over child custody, either parent may petition the superior court for resolution of the matter under AS 25.20.060-25.20.130. The court shall award custody on the basis of the best interests of the child. In determining the best interests of the child, the court shall consider all relevant factors including those factors enumerated in AS 25.24.150(c)."

The Supreme Court of Alaska has held that, “[w]hether involved in an initial or final child custody determination, a parent desiring custody must demonstrate that placement of the child with him or her would be in the child's best interests.” See Smith v. Weekley, 73 P.3d 1219, 1225 (2003) (quoting Velasquez v. Velasquez, 38 P.3d 1143, 1146 (Alaska 2002)).

Alaska Statute 25.24.150(c) sets out the 9 factors a court must consider in determining the best interests of the child. One of those factors requires the court to consider "The length of time the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment and the desirability of maintaining continuity."

An unstable and/or unsatisfactory environment for the child might be the basis the court finding that it is undesirable for the child to maintain continuity in that particular location. The court must also consider the other factors under AS 25.24.150(c).

You are welcome to contact our office if you have additional questions. All materials in this post are provided by the Law Offices of Blake Fulton Quackenbush for informational purposes only and do not contain legal advice, legal opinions or any other form of advice regarding any specific facts or circumstances.

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