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Oklahoma Property Division
Preparing the Documents
The spouse who files is the petitioner; the other spouse is the respondent.
In order to initiate a divorce a party must complete a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, a cover sheet, and in some instances a summons.
The Petition contains factual information about the parties and states the grounds for the divorce. Because Oklahoma is a no-fault state, the reason for the divorce is usually listed as incompatibility.
Filing the Paperwork with the Court
A petition for divorce is filed in the county where either party has resided for the previous 30 days.
Serving the Documents
A Petition for Divorce is served upon the other spouse by a private process server, county sheriff, or by certified mail.
Disclosing Financial Information
Oklahoma courts also require a completed Financial Affidavit when filing. This is an involved, eight-page document that might take time to complete. It requires detailed information regarding a party’s income, assets, debts and budget.
Uncontested vs. Contested Divorce
There are a number of possible benefits to an uncontested divorce. They cost less than the cost of a contested divorce. The spouses control the division of their assets and debts, and they create a custody and visitation plan that works for them. The process can also be completed much more quickly. Equally as important, the couple sidesteps the anger and hard feelings that often occur during a trial.
As of November 2014, both parents must attend a court-approved class about children and divorce before the divorce can be finalized.
Finalizing the Divorce
If the divorce is uncontested and the couple has minor children, there is a 90-day waiting period after the petition is filed and before the court can grant the divorce. Divorces that do not involve minor children can be finalized in as few as ten days after the petition for divorce is filed.
If the case is contested, the divorce takes longer to complete. The parties go through the discovery process, in which they exchange documents and information, and wait for a space on the court's docket if the case goes to trial.
In Oklahoma, either the petitioner - the spouse who files for divorce - or the respondent must have established residence for six months before the filing date. State law also allows a spouse who is a resident of a U.S. army post or military reservation in the state for six months to file for divorce or be sued for divorce. The suit is filed in the county where the petitioner resides, as long as he or she has lived there for at least 30 days.
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