Getting a divorce in Ohio can be a confusing and difficult process. Here’s everything you need to know about Ohio divorce laws: the basics.

Spouses must meet specific qualifications for an Ohio court to grant a divorce. Ohio courts also set guidelines for the asset division and designation of support.

Options for Ending a Marriage in Ohio

Ohio offers different routes spouses can take to end a marriage. Spouses may either undergo legal separation, dissolution, annulment, or divorce.

How to Obtain a Divorce in Ohio

The filing spouse must be resident for at least six months to undergo a divorce in Ohio.

Spouses must meet certain qualifications for divorce in Ohio. An Ohio court will grant a divorce if a spouse:

  • Leaves for over a year
  • Commits adultery
  • Exhibits physical or emotional abuse
  • Falsely represented their circumstances before marriage
  • Abuses alcohol/drug use
  • Lives separately from their spouse for over a year
  • Agrees the marriage is no longer working

How to File for Divorce in Ohio

After meeting the residency qualification and having grounds to end the marriage, a spouse must file divorce papers and serve their spouse with the paperwork. Hiring an experienced divorce attorney may help a spouse with this process.

After filing, spouses will undergo mediation or litigation when the court decides the divorce’s terms.

Terms spouses must negotiate during a divorce in Ohio include the division of property, assets, child support, custody schedules, alimony payments, etc.

Dividing Assets in Ohio

Ohio is an equitable distribution state; meaning assets do not necessarily need to be split equally between spouses. Instead, an Ohio court will fairly divide assets. To do so, the court will begin by assuming an equal split and then factor in other circumstances to create the most equitable distribution.

Spousal Support in Ohio

In Ohio, spouses discuss spousal support terms after dividing their property and assets. Courts determine spousal support based on the duration of the marriage and each party’s financial circumstances.

Parental Rights in Ohio

In Ohio, courts grant parental rights based on the children’s interests. Parents must submit a planned custody arrangement to the court. If they do not, an Ohio court will determine parenting terms with one spouse as a sole legal custodian and grant the other designated parenting rights.

Child Support in Ohio

Ohio courts determine spousal support based on legal guidelines. An Ohio court will combine each spouse’s gross income. Courts will use the total gross income to determine an appropriate amount for child support.

FAQs About Ohio Divorce Laws

What methods can I use to get a divorce in Ohio?

In Ohio, spouses may either use mediation, dissolution, or litigation to get a divorce.

How are divorce and dissolution different?

Ohio law uses the words “dissolution of marriage” to describe a no-fault divorce.

What is a no-fault divorce?

A no-fault divorce is when the spouses agree they are incompatible and have lived apart for at least a year.

What is the difference between divorce and separation in Ohio?

Ohio allows spouses to file for legal separation if they do not seek divorce but still wish to move apart. In Ohio, legal separation procedures are similar to divorce, with spouses having to determine the terms of their separation.

Do spouses need separate divorce attorneys in Ohio?

Spouses should get different legal counsel while determining the terms of the divorce. If a court settles the divorce, both spouses must have separate attorneys.

Does Ohio allow same-sex couples to file for divorce?

Yes, Ohio allows same-sex couples to file for divorce.

Does Ohio guarantee spousal support in a divorce?

Ohio courts may grant spousal support depending on the divorce’s circumstances. A court can determine spousal support eligibility.

How does an Ohio court decide which spouse will pay child support?

A court will assign the breadwinner (the spouse who financially provides for the family) to pay child support.

How long does a spouse have to pay child support in Ohio?

In Ohio, a court may require spousal support payments until children turn 19 or graduate from high school (whichever occurs later.)

Can you modify your divorce terms in Ohio?

Yes, Ohio courts allow spouses to modify their divorce terms after a court finalized their divorce.

What is the divorce rate in Ohio?

In 2015, over 58% of couples divorced in Ohio.

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If you or a loved one would like to know more about the basics of Ohio divorce laws, get your free consultation with one of our divorce attorneys today!