Dissolution of Marriage in Ohio

Dissolution is a “no-fault” legal proceeding to terminate a marriage.

The parties file a joint petition with the court and request that their marriage be terminated. Prior to the filing of a petition for dissolution, the parties must execute a separation agreement that provides for the division of all real and personal property and resolves the issue of spousal support. If minor children are involved, the parties must agree to the allocation of parental rights and responsibilities, child support and visitation rights. As with a divorce, the requirements for filing a petition for dissolution are that at least one of the parties must have been a resident of the State of Ohio for at least six (6) months immediately prior to the filing of the petition. Usually, the petition is filed in the county where at least one of the party lives, but that is not always the case. Sometimes we can file in a different county.

What happens after a petition for Dissolution of Marriage is filed?

After the petition is filed, a hearing date is set by the court. The hearing date must be not less than 30 days or more than 90 days after the filing of the petition. At the time of the hearing both parties need to be present in court. The testimony of the parties must be presented to satisfy the judge that the parties entered into the separation voluntarily; that they are satisfied with the terms of the agreement; that the agreement is fair; and that the parties still want to terminate the marriage. If the judge so finds, a judgment of dissolution that will make the separation agreement, thus making the separation agreement an order of the court and the marriage will be terminated. The advantages of dissolution are that they tend to be more amicable, quicker and cheaper.

In Ohio there is no legal requirement for the parties to be separated prior to filing. However, you will find some courts will not grant a Dissolution of Marriage if the parties are still living together. Other courts will allow the Dissolution to go forward but will require the parties to have a date certain or specific circumstance that will allow them to separate. Some courts will recognize unique circumstances (i.e. if the parties are stuck in the same home until it sells). Every case is handled differently based on the petition filed and a judge is assigned.

Each attorney at Schoonover, Rosenthal Thurman & Daray has been represented many persons in negotiations that ultimately led them to terminate their marriage by way of dissolutions rather than filing for divorce.

Questions about marriage dissolution & how that differs from getting a divorce?
Our attorneys can help you through the process, contact us today for more info.