Child custody refers to the care, maintenance, and control of a child.  We have represented many clients through custody cases and have witnessed the devastating impact that custody battles have on children and their families.  The law requires that judges make decisions based upon the best interest of the child.  We make it a primary goal to help our clients achieve the results that they want, while at the same time, protecting their children’s best interest.

Custody is a legal term that is often misunderstood.  “Legal custody” refers to who has decision making authority over the children for decisions such as education, healthcare, religion, lifestyle, discipline, etc.  Oklahoma Courts usually prefer joint legal custody if it is in the best interest of the child.  “Physical custody” is the time that each parent spends with each child.  This is often referred to as visitation.

Child Custody Considerations

The point of child custody is to provide for the child’s best interests.  Many factors are considered before the determination of child custody can be made.  Some of the most common considerations during a child custody hearing are:

  • The wishes of the parent(s)
  • The wishes of the child (if 12 years of age or older) regarding which parent they want to care for him or her
  • The relationship between the child and each of their parents, as well as any siblings
  • Any adjustment that might be necessary for the child, such as moving to a new area and adjusting to a new school
  • The mental and physical capacity of those involved
  • A parent’s criminal records, history of physical violence, or domestic abuse
  • Each parent’s capacity to facilitate a close and continuing relationship for their child with the other parent

How to Establish Paternity in Oklahoma

Fathers play an important role in the lives of children, but if you are an unmarried father you must go to court to legally establish your rights.  You deserve to have custody of or access to your child. The only way you can protect these rights is if you are established as the physical or legal father of the child. Unless paternity is established, you will be unable to obtain a court order for custody or visitation of your child.

Ways to Establish Paternity in Oklahoma

The first step to establishing paternity is filing a Paternity case in district court. The court will ultimately make custody makes decisions based on the child’s best interests, so you will need a skilled Oklahoma family lawyer on your side.  A paternity case will determine child custody, visitation and child support.  Do not be denied the time you deserve with your child.


Do not miss out on your son or daughter’s childhood.  Call the Sansone Howell’s skilled Oklahoma City Paternity and Custody Attorneys to fight for the time your children deserve.