The Indian Child Welfare Act was enacted in 1978, seeking to stem decades of abuse and neglect involving Indian families. Oklahoma passed its own requirements in 1982. This law applies to all Indian children, in any type of child custody proceeding, except for parental custody disputes and juvenile delinquency proceedings. Yet the law is often misunderstood or overlooked.

      Oklahoma Indian Legal Services, Inc. seeks to assist attorneys and social workers with The Indian Child Welfare Act: Case and Analysis, now in the 2009 Edition. Section One of the book examines case law that has shaped the


The Indian Child Welfare Act: Case and Analysis

“Yet they say I am a bad Indian.  Who has ever seen me beat my wives or abuse my children? What law have I broken? Is it wrong for me to love my own? Is it wicked in me because my skin is red, because I was born where my fathers lived, because I would die for my people and my country?”

--Sitting Bull

Act since its inception, and compares and contrasts the different interpretations that the federal and state Courts have put forward. Section Two of the book contains statutes on the ICWA and the Oklahoma ICWA, as well as the Federal Guidelines promulgated by the Department of Interior and miscellaneous Oklahoma statutes. This section also contains state listings of recognized federal Indian tribes and Alaskan Native Corporations. This system makes it easier to find tribal addresses, since the Department of Interior lists the tribes by Bureau of Indian Affairs regional offices.

    Section Three contains case annotations broken down by the ICWA’s individual sections, making is easy to get a quick understanding of the cases interpreting that statute. Section Four contains forms to assist the basic functions of the Act. Section Five is the 2005 GAO report on the states’ implementation of the ICWA.

   The Handbook is a .PDF file contained on CD-ROM. The CD is fulling annotated, simplifying searches in specific areas for specific topics. The book costs $30.00 (including shipping and handling), and can be ordered by sending payment to:

Oklahoma Indian Legal Services, Inc.

Attn: Indian Child Welfare Act Book

4200 Perimeter Center Drive, Suite 222

Oklahoma City, OK 73112

    Please remember to include a current mailing address for delivery.