Divorce & Family Law
In Ohio, marriage can end in two ways: divorce or dissolution. Divorce typically requires one party to be “at fault” on statutory grounds, with just two exceptions. The divorce process takes six weeks to finalize and may involve temporary orders and hearings. Third parties usually help divide finances and property.
Child custody in Ohio is based on several factors. The geographic location of the parents, history of abuse or domestic violence, and physical and mental health of all parties are taken into consideration. A judge may also interview the child to determine his or her personal wishes for living arrangements.
Both parents provide child support until the child reaches age 18, or longer if the child is in high school or has a disability. The noncustodial parent usually makes child support payments, but in joint custody cases the parent with the higher income pays more. Both parents cover medical and dental needs.
Ohio adoption laws cover domestic adoptions, international adoptions, and adopting through an agency. Legal guidelines vary based on the child’s age. Adoption eligibility depends on marital status and the birth parents’ wishes. Adoption consent may be granted 72 hours after a child’s birth.
A dissolution is an amicable, no-fault means of ending a marriage. It is less expensive and complex than ending a marriage through divorce. Most matters (such as property division and finances) are handled by the parties outside the court; parties only appear before a judge to finalize the marriage’s end.