About a year after my wife & I seperated she moved to NM with our kids, we were living in OK & have a child support case & I have been paying child support for about 2 yrs now. I finally was able to get a default divorce because she would not sign. I had a standard child custody plan with the original divorce decree. Since I had to settle for the default divroce the judge in OK said he did'nt have jurisdiction to do the custody plan because the child support case was in a different county & she & the kids now live in NM. My kids were recently taken by CYFD in NM & temporary guardienship was given to my dad in NM. We had a meeting with CYFD & I told them I want my kids to live with me in OK I am stable, want & able to care for them. I was told by CYFD that they cannot give them to me & this I do not understand? How do I get permanent custody of my girls? They are ages 3, 5, & 6 years old.
1 Answer from Attorneys
This is a great question in a somewhat complex area of the law. Also, it is not a question that can be easily answered in a forum such as this because any single answer I could give you will raise two or three new questions by you. Also, as to NM law it matters in which county the children are located and it will matter as to the exact 'charges' that were made by CYFD against the mother. CYFD may appoint an attorney for you and you can call them and ask them to do so. However, if they are not "charging" you with any abuse or neglect in the CYFD case they will not be inclined to appoint counsel for you.
You are welcomed to call my office and set up a 20 minute consultation at no cost so that I can give you some workable information. Because of circumstances in my own practice I may not be able to conduct any representation of you if you think that is possible. I can and will give you sufficient information so that you will be able to engage legal counsel and hopefully you will understand the legal process going on during this matter w/ CYFD.
You can find my town in address listing here and you can find my office phone at www.nmbar.org under "find attorney". Hope that helps.
John D. Watson