Alaska Child Custody Questions & Answers

Q: My parents are withholding my 2 children from me with only their Father’s consent is this legal? There is no court orde

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Mar 21, 2019
Stefan Otterson's answer
A power of attorney from one parent doesn't affect the other parent's rights. You can still do anything you would do if you were dealing directly with the father instead of the grandparents. However, you need to be careful in taking children from someone who has been the primary caregiver. Whether justified or not, if you abruptly take the kids, it may generate a report to OCS. The best approach is to work with your parents so you don't have to force the issue.

Q: Ocs just overturned a substantiated finding of neglect. Can I now regain full custody as per the custody order?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Alaska on
Answered on Feb 8, 2019
Stefan Otterson's answer
This is a delicate area, in the sense that the consequences of a mis-step can be grave. I think any lawyer would hesitate to say yes or no without a thorough discussion of the facts and a review of the OCS paperwork. Even then, OCS can be unpredictable in how they interpret their actions and policies, so solid answers may be hard to get. The safest thing would be to hold of on bringing your daughter back to the home until you have a clear OK in writing from OCS.

Q: OCS took kids they are with family we have not been charged with anything yet. Can I leave the state to get this drop?

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Dec 17, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
It's hard to tell from the limited details you give, but if OCS actually took your kids, then they have custody. You will probably be served with a Petition very soon. The OCS case does not require you to stay in the state, but you won't be able to take the children that OCS removed from your care. If you leave, it would make it much harder to get the kids back. When you talk about being charged, that sounds like a criminal case. That would be a completely separate court case from the...

Q: My ex and me hav 2 kids 9 months and a 2 year old. I’m planning to leave state he won’t allow me no and he agreed before

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Nov 19, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
There's nothing to stop you from leaving. Both of you have equal rights, so there's nothing stopping him from leaving with the kids either. If you leave without working it out with him first, he can file for a custody order and ask the court to order the kids returned to Alaska. Alaska will have jurisdiction unless he waits at least 6 months before filing. Normally the court wouldn't remove the kids from the parent who had them 95% of the time, but if the way you left looks like you're...

Q: How can we move out of state with a 50/50 custody plan? I am the mother with a significant other. I have no family here.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Sep 25, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
When you say we, I assume you mean you want to take the children with you, but the father would stay here. Unless you have an unusual custody schedule, you won't be able to follow it after you leave. That means you need either an agreement to change the schedule (and the custody percentage) or a court order. Preferably you would reach an agreement and then submit it to the court to have it reduced to an order. If you are not able to agree, then you'll have to file a Motion to Modify...

Q: OCS took my kid because I admitted to a previous urine analysis but am now in treatment

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Civil Rights for Alaska on
Answered on Aug 18, 2018
Gary Kollin's answer
You should have an attorney by now either appointed or retained.

You should be directing these questions to your attorney

Q: Ex wife and I share 50/50 custody. She sent the kids out of state without my permission. Is there anything I can do?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Jul 31, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
It depends on whether you're talking about a long-term or short-term trip out of state. If it's long term, then she isn't allowing you to have the children 50% of the time, and you can file a motion to enforce the shared custody. If it's a short term trip during her time, it depends on what the custody order says about out of state travel. If she's violating a provision of the order then you can file a motion to enforce that provision. If the order is silent, then you can't complain...

Q: My boyfriend is an addict with a history of domestic violence in previous relationship. Can I take our 2 kids and leave?

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Domestic Violence for Alaska on
Answered on Jul 8, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
If you have no court order governing custody, you can do whatever is reasonable under the circumstances. However the father has equal rights, so you will need to get a court order. If there has been domestic violence, then you should get a restraining order. This is something you can do without a lawyer, as the courts have a simplified process for that type of case. There are forms for you to use and the court clerks are generally very helpful. The DV court can grant custody if it seems...

Q: What age can a child say they dont want to go over to the other parents house in alaska?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Jul 8, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
A child never gets to make that choice, as it is an adult decision. If the parents don't agree, the court will consider the preference of a sufficiently mature child along with all the other factors. Preference alone is usually not the determinative factor. However from about age 14, the court will give it more weight if the child seems intelligent, mature, and has been making good decisions in other areas of his/her life.

Q: Can I leave Alaska with my 2 month old child if not legally married?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Alaska on
Answered on Apr 30, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
There is nothing to prevent you from moving, if that's what you need to do. Just do it in a way that respects the father's rights. The best practice is to file a custody case before you go, and get interim approval from the court for your move. If you don't have the resources to do that, then move now and file for custody once you're settled. You should give the father your new contact info as soon as you can, and try to make it easy for him to visit as much as the distance will allow....

Q: If my 2 prior children were taken by ocs, and i have another child, will ocs automatically have rights to get involved?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Apr 17, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
First, OCS will only get involved if someone makes a report. If you have normal pre-natal care and are not under the influence of anything when you give birth, the hospital probably won't report. However, if your mother isn't convinced you're clean and sober she could file a report. If that might happen, you should collect all the documentation you'll need to show OCS you are in a different situation. Having a regular job and keeping up on your mortgage payments goes a long way, if you...

Q: We signed our daughter over to my mother after ocs battle and my mother won't let us be apart of my daughters life.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Apr 10, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
Your rights depend on the paperwork you signed. If you agreed to a guardianship then the visitation provisions in the order can be enforced, or if there are no specifics, then visitation can be reviewed by the court at your request, and visitation provisions can be added. If you signed a relinquishment so that your daughter could be adopted, then there is no option for court review unless you specifically reserved visitation rights in the relinquishment you signed, and the court included...

Q: Can I request sole custody and not get child support? I don't want any money I can take care of us myself.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Alaska on
Answered on Apr 6, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
Whenever the court issues a child custody order, they issue a child support order. That part you can't get around, even by agreement, unless you are in a truly unique situation so that it wouldn't be reasonable to apply the normal rules. Just being able to take care of things yourself wouldn't do it. What you can do is not enforce the support that's ordered. You don't have to get CSSD involved. (That doesn't stop arrears from piling up, so the other parent would just have to trust...

Q: My sons father got custody of him when we had lived in Pennsylvania 6 years ago, they now reside in Florida and I Alaska

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Mar 30, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
If your son has been living in Florida no one lives in Pennsylvania anymore, then you'd need to file in Florida.

Q: The father of my child wants to sign his parental rights over to his mother. Is this legal?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Feb 27, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
He could either mean adoption or guardianship. Adoption is permanent, guardianship isn't. Either one would require your consent or clear evidence that you have failed to maintain a relationship with and support the child, or that returning the child to your care would be dangerous to the child. If you are a safe caregiver who's involved in the child's life, then whatever he does can't change your rights without your consent.

Q: I wish to move away from home w/o parental permission, will i be able to do so without being brought home?

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Juvenile Law for Alaska on
Answered on Feb 4, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
Generally, emancipation is the legal path that gives you the ability to do what you intend. It does require parental consent with some exceptions. There are a few alternatives, such as specific emancipation and guardianship. Alaska Youth Advocates has a handbook that goes through all the options:

http://www.akyouthadvocates.org/resources/

The Bar Association also has an excellent Youth Law Guide, which covers many other topics that may be useful to you:...

Q: if i have a court order granting me sole legal and primary physical custody can he live with me full time?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Jan 31, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
If "full time" is different from the schedule set out in your order, you need to either do a written, signed agreement with the other parent setting out the new schedule (assuming that's allowed in your order), or if you can't agree, then you need to file a Motion to Modify Custody to get your order changed.

Q: Can I the mother leave ak with my child then file divorced from another state

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Divorce, Domestic Violence and Family Law for Alaska on
Answered on Jan 29, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
You are free to move wherever you want, as long as there's not already a divorce case pending. (To the extent it's safe, you should still provide whatever visitation you can with the other parent.)

You will need to check the divorce jurisdiction law in the state you're moving to. There's a chance you won't be able to do the divorce there, especially if child custody and property issues still have to be dealt with in Alaska. Child custody jurisdiction generally requires the children...

Q: I live in alaska and parental rights where taken from me. Is there any way i can get my rights back.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Alaska on
Answered on Jan 26, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
The adoptive parent has exactly the same rights as a parent. As the biological parent, you have no more rights than any unrelated person. Your best bet is to work with the adoptive parent, so that she will voluntarily allow you to have visits. If that's not possible, you may have no recourse, as long as the adoptive parent is providing minimally adequate care.

Q: Can I the mother with physical custody at this time leave the state of Alaska after filing for divorce

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Alaska on
Answered on Jan 25, 2018
Stefan Otterson's answer
Once you've filed and a divorce case is pending, you usually need to get a written agreement from the other parent or court permission to leave the state. You should check the details of the standard order that is issued at the time the Complaint is filed. Different courts may have different provisions in that initial order.

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