The First and Most Common Is Through Guardianship
Video Transcribed: How can a grandparent get custody of a grandchild in the state of Oklahoma? Hi, I’m Tulsa GRANDPARENTS RIGHTS Lawyer Justin Mosteller, and I’m going to answer that question for you today. There are three ways that a grandparent can get custody of a grandchild in Oklahoma.
The first and most common is through guardianship. Now, guardianship is a two-phase process. You start out initially with a petition for emergency custody through the guardianship, and at that hearing, you go and speak to the judge, just you, your attorney, and the judge.
Second, the court then does what’s called a show cause hearing. A show cause hearing is when the parents are given the opportunity to speak and object to the guardianship. And the court makes a determination as to the best interests of the child and whether a guardianship is necessary.
At that phase, and in all phases, it’s very important that all the statutes that govern guardianships are followed, including service of process, special rules for a child of Indian descent, and other requirements including background checks that really have to be followed closely and are required especially in Tulsa County.
Now the second and less common way for grandparents to obtain custody, or at least what we’ll call custody today, is during a deprived case where the parents have been found by the court to be unfit. Given certain circumstances, a grandparent can be a good placement for the grandchild while that case is pending and while those parents get help with their issues.
The third and probably least common way is through an adoption proceeding. An adoption proceeding can be pretty traumatic for the family, but in cases where a child is in need of permanent, stable, and loving parents, and the parents are unavailable, unfit, and/or uninterested, then an adoption petition can be one way to solve that issue.
Now, adoption has to also follow very particular due process requirements. And more so than any of the other ways, this will require an attorney to help guide you through those steps. If you find yourself in the position where you feel like you need to take custody of your grandchild, then don’t hesitate to give us a call and we can give you some good advice so you can defend your Grandparents Rights in Oklahoma.