Unmarried Oklahoma Dads Have No Rights
Video Transcribed: I am a Tulsa Men’s Divorce Lawyer, and I’d like to talk to you guys today about custody and visitation orders. What are they and what is the benefit of having one? If you’re an unmarried father… And I’m going to focus on you guys for a moment. I can talk at a later date about you guys who are married. If you’re an unmarried father without a custody and visitation order, you have exactly zero rights to your child.
It’s a sad fact under Oklahoma law. The mother is presumed to have custody by statute if you are not married to her. And the only way you get the right to even see your child is by going to the district court, filing a paternity action, and getting a custody and visitation order entered.
That will determine who has custody of the child and who gets to see the child when. If you are an unmarried father, that is 100% mandatory. And when I say mandatory, what I mean by that is, if you don’t have that, you are at mom’s mercy. And if she decides she doesn’t like you, she decides she is mad at you, she decides she thinks the woman that you are dating is a skank, whatever, then she can cut you out of that child’s life in 10 seconds flat.
Once you have that custody and visitation order though, then you have something with some real teeth that you can enforce. If she continues to ignore it, you have several legal options, which include the option to have her cited for contempt of court and to pursue contempt proceedings, where you’re basically asking the court to punish her for her failure to follow the court order.
And you can also file a motion to enforce, which will get you into court very quickly and is asking the court to order her to follow the prior order. Both of these are options that can come onto the table once you, as a father, have a custody and visitation order for your child.
And guys, it’s important to get after that right away. The longer you wait, the harder it’s going to be to establish and keep that relationship with your child. If you need to get a custody and visitation order entered, I suggest you come and talk to me at Dads.law, where fathers are not disposable. If you are looking for a divorce attorney for men, go to dads.law.