Oklahoma Family Court Can Vary Widely
Video Transcribed: How long does a family law case take in Oklahoma? I’m Tulsa family attorney James Wirth and I’m answering frequently asked questions related to family law in Oklahoma. And that one’s a tough one. How long does it take to complete a case, because it can vary widely.
So let’s talk about a case where we’ve got an agreed divorce. You guys have an agreement regarding custody, visitation, child support, asset, debt division, everything. You can get together with an attorney or with a drafting service and get paperwork drafted up. You file it with the court.
There’s a 10 day waiting period and then after… Oh, I’m sorry, if there’s kids, there’s a 90 day waiting period. So it’s a minimum of at least 90 days to get that case completed if there’s an agreement. So you get it filed, the petition, that starts the 90 day waiting period.
Once the 90 days is up, you can go before a judge and enter an agreed decree. So it can take as little as 90 days for a divorce involving minor children. Sometimes you can get the judge to waive that 90 day requirement if you have good reason to do so and do it even faster.
If there’s no kids involved and you have an agreement, full agreement to get divorced, full agreement on asset, debt division, you can file that petition, wait only 10 days, and get before the judge and get that done by agreement, which is pretty quick for a court matter to get it done completely in 10 days.
But that’s where there’s an agreement. What if there’s not an agreement? Well, it can vary widely. I’ve seen cases that have been litigating off and on, been going on for 10 years. When you see cases like that, it’s mostly because it hasn’t been prosecuted those full 10 years. Nobody’s been pushing it for those 10 years.
If somebody is actively pushing the case forward, then even in the busiest counties, you should be able to get it resolved in under two years.
But in the busiest counties, it’s really tough to get a case all the way to a final trial in faster than a year. So that’s kind of the range that you’re looking at.
Either side has various opportunities to slow the case down and preventing it from going forward.
And nobody is going to push the case forward if it’s not one of the parties. So if neither party is pushing it forward, it’s not going to go anywhere.
If one of the parties is trying to delay, they can get some delay out of the case, but they can’t delay it for long. As long as the other party is pushing it forward, it’s going to eventually move forward to a final trial if there’s no agreement. And it’s going to get done, but most cases ended up getting resolved by agreement.
So push it forward, use that leverage of having a final trial to get resolution at mediation and earlier. And that’s how most cases get done more quickly. But hopefully that answers the question.
If you’ve got more specific questions regarding your circumstances though, you’re going to want to talk to a lawyer about your case. For that, you can contact a Tulsa Attorney by going to makelaweasy.com.