A Brief Overview of Ohio Divorce Laws


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If you’re considering divorce within the state of Ohio, then you will want to find a good lawyer to assist you with this process. A family law lawyer will also be able to provide counsel when there are children involved.

In order to file for a dissolution of marriage or a divorce within the state of Ohio, you need to have been a resident for a minimum of six months. In the case of a dissolution, you would file a petition, and in the case of a divorce, you would file a complaint.

In the state of Ohio, and depending on the circumstances, you may have more than one option. With a Dissolution of Marriage, neither party needs to be at fault, according to Ohio Law. Both parties do, however, have to come to an agreement on the following issues:

    Division of property and debt

      Spousal support
      Child support
      Child custody
      Parental rights and responsibilities

    A dissolution, according to Ohio Law, is not the same as a divorce. Basically, the court is not as involved with the decision-making process as they would be with a contested divorce. As a result, dissolutions proceed more quickly.

    A divorce, according to Ohio Law, is a judgment granted by the court when there are obvious grounds. It is considered to be a termination of the marriage. A marriage may also be terminated, however, when there are no-fault grounds.

    A divorce may be granted due to these statutory grounds:

      Extreme cruelty
      Fraudulent contract
      Gross neglect of duty
      Habitual drunkenness

          imprisonment of the adverse party
          Willful absence of the adverse party for one year

        Annulments may be another option, depending on the circumstances. This is a court-declared decree due to a marriage being legally invalid. This would entail a pre-existing defect that was present at the time of the marriage. Basically, this means that the marriage never existed.

        An annulment may be possible under the following situations:

          Failure to consummate
          Mental incompetence
          Underage parties

        As with all grounds, there will be additional stipulations. If you are seeking an annulment, your divorce lawyer will explain them to you.

        Since Ohio is an equitable distribution state, your property will be fairly distributed by the courts. This is not, however, the same as an equal distribution of property.

        If you and your spouse change your minds about whether to ask for a dissolution or a divorce, your divorce lawyer will be able to assist you with this process. As long as you enter this change before a final judgment is entered, you should be able to accomplish this.

        When or if this situation transpires, your divorce lawyer would file a court motion. In general, there won’t be any court fees or other costs associated with a conversion of action.

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