• Kyle Persaud

Bartlesville divorce: How long does it take?

An average divorce in Bartlesville takes 67 days, but may vary based on these factors:


  • If there are minor children and neither party retains a lawyer, the typical divorce case takes about 4 ½ months.

  • If there are minor children and at least one party has a lawyer, the typical divorce case takes about 3 ½ months.

  • If there are no minor children, the typical divorce case is over in less than a month – whether either party has a lawyer or not.


The long answer


We must first note that, in Oklahoma, there is a waiting period established by statute.


Divorces with Minor Children


Under this statutory waiting period, if there are minor children of the parties, the court may not grant the divorce less than ninety days after the petition is filed. The Court may waive the ninety-day waiting period “for good cause shown” if neither party objects to waiving the waiting period. The court may also waive the waiting period “if the parties voluntarily participate in marital or family counseling and the court finds reconciliation is unlikely.”


The ninety-day waiting period does not apply, if the divorce petition is filed for any of the following reasons:


  1. Abandonment for one (1) year;

  2. Extreme cruelty;

  3. Habitual drunkenness;

  4. Imprisonment of the other party in a state or federal penal institution under sentence thereto for the commission of a felony at the time the petition is filed;

  5. The procurement of a final divorce decree outside this state by a husband or wife which does not in this state release the other party from the obligations of the marriage;

  6. Insanity for a period of five (5) years, the insane person having been an inmate of a state institution for the insane in the State of Oklahoma, or an inmate of a state institution for the insane in some other state for such period, or an inmate of a private sanitarium, and affected with a type of insanity with a poor prognosis for recovery;

  7. Conviction of any crime defined by the Oklahoma Child Abuse Reporting and Prevention Act committed upon a child of either party to the divorce by either party to the divorce; or

  8. A child of either party has been adjudicated deprived, pursuant to the Oklahoma Children’s Code, as a result of the actions of either party to the divorce and the party has not successfully completed the service and treatment plan required by the court.


Even if the court waives the ninety-day waiting period, another court rule says that, except in the case of an emergency, a court may not hear a divorce petition on its merits, until the petition has been on file for thirty days.


Divorces without Minor Children


If there are no minor children of the parties, the court may not hear a divorce petition on its merits, until the petition has been on file for ten days, except in the case of an emergency.


But, how long does a divorce usually take?


The Persaud Law Office looked at the records of all divorce cases filed in Washington County in January and February, 2018, to see how long each divorce took between the petition and the final judgment. (By final judgment, we mean either a final decree of divorce, or a dismissal of the petition.)


There were 33 divorce petitions filed in Washington County in January and February 2018.


Of these 33 divorce petitions, 29 of them had reached a final judgment by November of 2019. The remaining four cases were still going on, and had not reached a final judgment, by November of 2019.


Of the 29 Washington County divorce cases that had reached final judgment, the shortest of these divorce cases took eight days between the filing of the petition, and the final judgment. The longest of these cases, took 637 days (21.2 months) between the filing of the petition, and the final judgment. The second longest of these cases, took 198 days (6.6 months) between the filing of the petition, and the final judgment.


For all divorce cases filed in Washington County in January and February 2018, (not including the 637-day divorce) the average length of time between filing and final judgment, was 66.89 days, or 2.2 months. (When the 637-day divorce was included in the total, the average length of time was 86.55 days, or 2.9 months.)


For divorces without minor children, the average length of time a case took to reach final judgment, was 25.33 days (less than one month).


For divorces with minor children, (not including the 637-day divorce) the average length of time a case took to reach final judgment, was 114.85 days, or 3.8 months. (When the 637-day divorce was included in the total, the average length of time was 152.14 days, or 5 months.)


Does it matter whether you retain a lawyer?


If there were no minor children, retaining a lawyer didn’t seem to affect how long the divorce case took. For cases without minor children, it took an average of 25.3 days to reach final judgment when neither party retained a lawyer, and an average of 25.5 days to reach final judgment when at least one party retained a lawyer.


But, if children were involved, cases moved faster when one party was represented by counsel. For cases with minor children, it took an average of 135 days (4.5 months) to reach final judgment when neither party retained a lawyer, and an average of 102.25 days (3.4 months) to reach final judgment when at least one party retained a lawyer. (This calculation does not include the 637-day divorce. When the 637-day divorce was included, the average divorce, with counsel and with children, took 161.66 days, or 5.3 months.) Thus, in the divorce cases where minor children were involved, the cases where at least one party was represented, were completed an average of over one month sooner, than the cases where neither party was represented by an attorney.


Note also, that this analysis only looked at the length of time between the filing of the petition, and the final judgment. We did not take into account any motions filed after final judgment (such as motions to modify custody, or motions to enforce visitation).


The bottom line is: A typical Washington County divorce case, filed in January or February 2018, took seven months or less between the time the petition is filed, and the final judgment. If there were no children, the cases with lawyers took the same amount of time as the cases without lawyers. But, if there were children, cases with lawyers ended sooner.


Below, see a statistical breakdown of all divorces filed in Washington County in January and February 2018:

List of all divorces filed, January and February, 2018



Data on divorces filed (not including 637-day divorce)




Data on divorces filed (including 637-day divorce)


NOTE: The information provided on this website is not intended to be, and does not constitute, the giving of legal advice. The information provided here is not intended to be, and should not be used as, a substitute for individual reliance on privately retained legal counsel. Information provided on this site may not constitute the most current or complete information with respect to legal topics or developments. Mr. Persaud expressly disclaims all liability based on any information contained on this site.”

© 2020, by Kyle Persaud.