Overview of Amicable Divorce in Ohio
An amicable divorce in Ohio is essentially an uncontested, no-contest, or no-fault divorce. These divorces are also called dissolutions. The difference between a dissolution and a divorce lies in whether fault or blame is placed in the divorce and whether the couple is able to agree on important factors or needs the court to rule. There is no difference in the eventual outcome; whether you choose divorce or dissolution, the marriage is legally terminated once approved in court.
Dissolution Process in Ohio
When both parties agree on the divorce and are able to come to an agreement on child custody, property division, child support, and alimony, they can legally end their marriage through dissolution. The couple files a joint petition to have the court review and approve their agreement, which clearly allocates marital debts, allocates parental custody, support, and visitation, and clearly outlines division of property. The agreement they have drafted is attached to the petition and submitted to the courts. Although service is required, couples have the option of signing a waiver that eliminates this step and expedites the process. Once the petition is received by the court, a hearing is scheduled, during which each spouse must testify that they voluntarily entered into the agreement, that they agree with the terms, and that they still want to dissolve the marriage. If the judge approves the dissolution, the marriage is terminated.
It’s important to note that the agreement signed in a dissolution is a legal document, and failure to comply with the guidelines set forth can result in legal repercussions. Both parties should ensure they support and are able to comply with the guidelines set before signing the petition and submitting to the courts. Hiring an experienced divorce attorney can ensure your rights and protected and there are no legal issues with your agreement.
Benefits of Dissolution of Marriage
Dissolution can be beneficial to families in that it eliminates or lessens opportunity for conflict between spouses and is typically less costly than a divorce. The end result is the same: the marriage is effectively terminated. However, there is a residency stipulation; at least one party in the marriage must be an Ohio resident for at least the past six months.
Options for Preparing an Agreement
Not all couples are able to agree on every aspect of their divorce independently, but many are interested in reaching a point of compromise and choosing the dissolution process over the divorce proceeding. Some options for couples working on an agreement favorable to both parties include:
- Therapy – Some couples choose to seek the assistance of a licensed therapist as they make decisions about their divorce. Discussing the factors that are difficult to agree on in the presence of a therapist can improve communication, encourage compromise, and prevent outbursts and conflict.
- Mediation – Couples struggling to iron out the details of their divorce or custody arrangements often rely on mediation. During mediation, a mediator assists couples in making decisions and communicating effectively.
- Independent Discussion – Some couples are able to resolve their differences independently through discussion and compromise. The benefit to resolve differences independently is the financial savings and the relief from conflict.
- Collaboration – Another feasible option is for each spouse to hire legal counsel who work together to come to agreements favorable to both parties.
To Learn More About Amicable Divorce in Ohio
Divorce can be a very challenging time for families. If you’re considering an amicable divorce or dissolution of marriage in Ohio, hiring an experienced divorce attorney can ensure your rights are protected throughout the process. An attorney knows which Ohio laws govern your divorce and can use this knowledge and experience to guide you in the right direction as you work to dissolve your marriage. It’s also a good idea to hire an attorney to assist in the decision-making process by initiating and managing communication with your spouse and/or his legal counsel. Laubacher & Co in Cleveland, Ohio, specializes in both amicable and contested divorces and is eager to review your case.