General Idea about the Legal Separation in Oklahoma

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Legal separation in Oklahoma is also known as separate maintenance, marital separation or divorce separation. There is no residency requirement or waiting period required to get a legal separation in Oklahoma.

The legal separation is issued in the form of a court decree which is known as 'Decree of Legal Separation'. It is reversible and is not a pre-requisite for divorce. It is necessary to sign a Marital Separation Agreement in order for the separation to be legally binding. The only difference between legal separation in Oklahoma and divorce is that the couple stay technically married even after being legally separated unlike in a divorce case.

Grounds for Legal Separation in Oklahoma:

The grounds for legal separation in Oklahoma are same as the grounds for divorce. These grounds are specified by the statute of Oklahoma. These grounds are as follows:

  • Abandonment - If either of the spouses has been abandoned by the other for a period of more than one year, it can be a firm ground for legal separation in Oklahoma. The other spouse can file for legal separation after one year is completed and yet the whereabouts of the runaway spouse are unknown.
  • Adultery - Committing adultery is a ground for legal separation. It comprises of romantic liaisons, one night stands, flings, and extra-marital affairs on part of either of the spouses. The other spouse can file for legal separation on this ground on the basis that the partner is not faithful and thus the separation be granted.
  • Impotency - Inability to produce the children or having sexual dysfunction can be the grounds for legal separation in the state of Oklahoma. The impotency comprises of sterility, inability to satisfy one's partner sexually and other reasons, which lead to an eventual breakdown of the marriage.
  • Pregnancy out of Marriage - If the husband has impregnated a woman outside the wedlock or if the wife is pregnant not with her husband's child, it is a ground for legal separation in Oklahoma. The aggrieved spouse can claim that the marriage has broken down completely due to this sleeping around tendency of their married partners.
  • Extreme Cruelty - Cruelty can range anything from hitting to denying the sexual relations despite being able to perform. The aggrieved spouse can file for legal separation citing cruelty and inhuman treatment as the ground, and can assert that the marriage has been broken down due to this reason.
  • Incompatibility - Marriage is a union of two people who might be totally different from each other. These opposite traits attract them towards each other in the first place. However, after they start living together, they find that those qualities that they adored at first now irritate them, thus making them incompatible. There could be differences of opinions, temperaments or any other factors majorly contributing to the breakdown of marriage.
  • Habitual Substance Abuse - If either of the spouses has the habit of substance abuse such as drugs, alcohol or other medications, which provide the necessary 'high', the other spouse can ask for legal separation in order to protect the well-being of the children as well as themselves.
  • Gross Neglect of Marital Duties - If a partner fails to provide for or contribute to the household expenses, it can be considered as the gross neglect of marital duties, and the other spouse can file for legal separation in such a case. This could be not spending time with the family, not sharing the expenses as well as the household chores.
  • Imprisonment - If either of the partners is convicted of a crime and is going to be imprisoned for a certain period of time, the other partner can ask for legal separation in order to protect the children and help them lead a normal life; free of the taint and ascertaining a normal childhood which will enable them to have a normal life later.
  • Insanity - Having the bouts of insanity can be dangerous for the family as well as the person himself. He / she can resort to violence and be uncontrollable at times, which makes it difficult to lead a normal life thus threatening a normal childhood for the children. Legal separation in Oklahoma can be granted on these grounds.
  • No-fault - Oklahoma is a no-fault divorce state and one can get the legal separation without citing a reason for the same. The no-fault separation is granted immediately after the couple signs the Marital Separation Agreement.
Marital Separation Agreement:

Legal separation in Oklahoma requires a marital separation agreement signed by both the parties and notarized. The arrangements are made according to the court directions and are legally binding to both the parties. As legal separation provision is not popular in Oklahoma, it is important to hire an attorney who is an expert in the family law.

The court decree, that is, the legal decree makes the separation a legal separation in the state of Oklahoma.

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