In Ohio, uncontested divorce is not the same thing as dissolution(which is often referred to as amicable divorce, no fault divorce, and agreed divorce). As the name suggests, uncontested divorce is part of the divorce process, not part of a dissolution. One of the primary differences between a divorce and a dissolution is that the marriage can end with only one party present at the final hearing. This can be important where one party either ignores the divorce papers, or, in the case of deployed military members, would like the marriage to end but find it difficult to attend the hearing. In those cases the party wanting to end the marriage must rely on a divorce proceeding.
A divorce is a civil lawsuit filed by one spouse (the “plaintiff”) against the other spouse (the “defendant”) seeking a termination of the marriage. When a divorce is filed, the plaintiff is essentially asking the court to make a final determination regarding the division of property, and where appropriate, spousal support and allocation of parental rights.
Reasons for Choosing Divorce over Dissolution:
- If you cannot negotiate and use reason to reach a settlement regarding division of assets and debts or parenting matters.
- If your spouse is extremely hostile and mistreating you or the children.
- If your spouse is controlling assets and finances has stopped supporting you and the children.
- If you are concerned that your spouse may be destroying assets.
- If you are unaware of the marital assets or debts.
- If you are threatened with harm.
- If your spouse is absent or otherwise unwilling to participate in the process.
- If you need immediate help with child support, spousal support or custody/visitation issues.
Grounds for Divorce in Ohio:
The court may grant a divorce for the following causes:
- Either party had a husband or wife living at the time of the marriage from which the divorce is sought.
- Willful absence of the adverse party for one year.
- Extreme cruelty.
- Fraudulent contract.
- Any gross neglect of duty.
- Habitual drunkenness.
- Imprisonment of the adverse party in a state or federal correctional institution at the time of filing the complaint.
- Procurement of a divorce outside this state, by a husband or wife, by virtue of which the party who procured it is released from the obligations of the marriage, while those obligations remain binding upon the other party.
- When husband and wife have, without interruption for one year, lived separate and apart without cohabitation.
- Incompatibility, unless denied by either party.
Forms Prepared in a Divorce:
- Complaint for Divorce
- Motion for Restraining Order and Supporting Affidavit
- Restraining Order
- Financial Affidavit/Affidavit of Assets and Liabilities
- Motion for Temporary Orders and Supporting Affidavit
- Temporary Orders
- Instructions for Service
- Custody Affidavit (if the parties have minor children)
- Health Insurance Disclosure Affidavit (if the parties have minor children)
- Notice of Support Hearing (if the parties have minor children)
- Discovery Requests
We settle most family law and divorce cases. As a certified mediator I have settled, even the most difficult of divorce cases. It is only when the other spouse has unrealistic expectations that we actually go to trial. Every effort is made to settle a case because a trial costs, creates more animosity and creates uncertainty because the court is making decisions for you. However, if a settlement is reached, an agreement can be drafted and presented to the court just as in a dissolution.
However, if we are unable to reach an agreement regarding any issue concerning termination of the marriage, division of assets or debts, childcare issues, or any other matter, then a trial will be held and the ultimate decision will be made by the court.