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Legal Statutes: Oklahoma

UPDATED May 25, 2017

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Article 2. Jurisdiction

back to top§ 551-207. Inconvenient forum

INCONVENIENT FORUM

A. A court of this state which has jurisdiction under this act [FN1] to make a child custody determination may decline to exercise its jurisdiction at any time if it determines that it is an inconvenient forum under the circumstances and that a court of another state is a more appropriate forum. The issue of inconvenient forum may be raised upon the motion of a party, the court's own motion, or request of another court.

B. Before determining whether it is an inconvenient forum, a court of this state shall consider whether it is appropriate for a court of another state to exercise jurisdiction. For this purpose, the court shall allow the parties to submit information and shall consider all relevant factors, including:

1. Whether domestic violence has occurred and is likely to continue in the future and which state could best protect the parties and the child;

2. The length of time the child has resided outside this state;

3. The distance between the court in this state and the court in the state that would assume jurisdiction;

4. The relative financial circumstances of the parties;

5. Any agreement of the parties as to which state should assume jurisdiction;

6. The nature and location of the evidence required to resolve the pending litigation, including testimony of the child;

7. The ability of the court of each state to decide the issue expeditiously and the procedures necessary to present the evidence; and

8. The familiarity of the court of each state with the facts and issues in the pending litigation.

C. If a court of this state determines that it is an inconvenient forum and that a court of another state is a more appropriate forum, it shall stay the proceedings upon condition that a child custody proceeding be promptly commenced in another designated state and may impose any other condition the court considers just and proper.

D. A court of this state may decline to exercise its jurisdiction under this act if a child custody determination is incidental to an action for divorce or another proceeding while still retaining jurisdiction over the divorce or other proceeding.



Laws 1998, c. 407, § 19, eff. Nov. 1, 1998.
[FN1] Title 43, § 551-101 et seq.