Stefan Otterson
  • Family Law, Arbitration & Mediation, Divorce ...
  • Alaska
Claimed Lawyer ProfileQ&AGoldSocial MediaResponsive Law

Stefan Otterson has lived and practiced law in Anchorage since 1988. Stefan lived and worked in Europe for three years before attending the University of Utah, graduating suma cum laude in 1984. He received both an MBA and Law Degree from the University of Utah schools of Business and Law in 1988. Stefan started out in private commercial legal practice, but joined the Attorney General’s Office in 1990. There he was a child protection and juvenile delinquency prosecutor, and also represented the Divisions of Public Safety, Mental Health, and Medicaid. Since 2000 Stefan has practiced family law in courts all over Southcentral, Southwest and Northwest Alaska. Stefan is also trained in mediation and collaborative law, and has been a mediator for the court system, and a child advocate (guardian ad litem).

Practice Areas
  • Family Law
  • Arbitration & Mediation
  • Divorce
  • Juvenile Law
  • Appeals & Appellate
  • Domestic Violence
Additional Practice Areas
  • Adoption
  • Collaborative Law
  • Collaborative Divorce
  • Child Abuse & Neglect
  • OCS Relative Placement
  • Credit Cards Accepted
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
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  • French: Written
  • German: Spoken, Written
Professional Experience
Otterson Law & Mediation, P.C.
University of Utah
MBA (1988)
Honors: Wm & Opal Fields Scholarship
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The University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law
J.D. (1988)
The University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law Logo
University of Utah
B.A. (1984) | English with writing emphasis, German minor
Honors: Summa Cum Laude
Activities: Graduation speaker, Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Kappa Phi
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Professional Associations
Alaska State Bar  # 8811198
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Alaska Association of Collaborative Professionals
- Current
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Speaking Engagements
Adoptive Parent Training , Quarterly Adoptive Parent Workshops , Anchorage
Catholic Social Services
Legal portion of adoptive parent training
Adoptive Parent Training , Quarterly Adoptive Parent Workshops , Anchorage
Catholic Social Services
Legal portion of adoptive parent training
Websites & Blogs
Stefan Otterson's Website Profile
Otterson Law & Mediation, P.C. Website
Legal Answers
73 Questions Answered

Q. If I die does my son’s father automatically get custody?
A: Yes. It's not even clear that any action by the court would be needed. He was already able to exercise legal custody, and after your death, he would have the clear right to physical custody. Grandparents would have no right to custody, though they could ask for visitation if the father unreasonably denied it, to the detriment of the child. Grandparents could also ask for custody, but they would not succeed unless they could prove the father represents a clear danger to the child due to a history of child abuse or neglect, severe substance abuse, or something like that. It's very very difficult for a third party to remove custody from a parent. The only way to prevent the above from happening would be for a step-parent to adopt the child (while you are still living). That would require proper notice to the father.
Q. The father of my childern lost custody of my childern to ocs, they didnt call me to pick up my kids
A: There is no simple answer to your question, other than the following general principles. 1. Make contact with the social worker and cooperate with OCS to get yourself and anyone else in your home checked and cleared. 2. Unless you can afford a private attorney, submit a request to the court for a public defender to be appointed for you in the CINA case. You should have received a copy of the Petition which was filed by OCS. It will have the case name and number that you need to use for that request. Until you have legal counsel you can work with OCS, but do not agree to any court findings. 3. Attend all meetings and hearings and advocate for yourself and the children. 4. Once you have an attorney, have him/her determine whether you need to file a custody case in addition to the DV case.
Q. My ex girlfriend and i have 2 children together.there is no legal custody agreement.i have always had them on the weeken
A: Your rights are exactly the same as the mother's. However, there's nothing to spell out what that means. If the two of you don't agree how to manage in that completely undefined environment, then either of you can file a Complaint for Custody with the court. Ideally you would then negotiate an agreement between you and ask the court to make it an order. If you can't agree, then you each present your reasons to the court and the judge decides. Generally, the court's try hard to stick with shared custody, varying between 70/30 and 50/50 time with each parent. Generally both parents share legal custody, meaning both of you will still have the right to sign school and medical paperwork, etc. The court's website has forms to help you do all this yourself, and the court's family law self-help center can help you understand how the process works (though they can't give legal advice). Note that the court system has currently shut down for all but emergency hearings. You can still file your paperwork, but don't expect to get a court order before early summer.
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Contact & Map
Otterson Law & Mediation, P.C.
425 G St
Anchorage, AK 99501
Telephone: (907) 868-5050