Ending a marriage is always a challenging decision. But the decision doesn’t end there for couples who have chosen to live separate lives. In Ohio, married couples wishing to end their marriage must choose between two options; divorce and dissolution of marriage. Knowing which option is best can be challenging. That is why we answer frequently asked questions about divorce and dissolution of marriage, giving you the information you need to make an informed decision.
If you want more information about dissolution and divorce, contact the team of experienced Ohio family law attorneys at Slater & Zurz. We can answer any questions and guide you through the process you choose. Call (888) 534-4850 to arrange your no-obligation consultation.
Dissolution of Marriage Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between divorce and dissolution of marriage?
In Ohio, you have two options to end your marriage legally; dissolution of marriage and divorce. Both processes give you the same result – you and your spouse will no longer be married. However, the processes are different.
In a dissolution, you and your spouse must agree to the terms before you file. Still, in a divorce, the courts will decide any undecided matters relating to the termination of your marriage. Simply put, dissolutions are typically better for couples in agreement, and divorces are necessary when matters remain unresolved.
What are the benefits of seeking a dissolution of marriage?
A dissolution gives couples who wish to end their marriage a faster and less expensive way to do so. Couples who seek dissolution also avoid much of the hassle and stress associated with a divorce. Dissolutions are typically the better option as long as both parties can agree on the terms of their separation agreement.
What do my spouse and I have to agree upon before getting a dissolution?
You and your future ex-spouse will need to agree on all matters relating to the termination of your marriage. These include:
- The amount of alimony (also known as “spousal support”)
- How the marital assets will be divided
- How the couple’s debt will be divided
- The allocation of parental rights
- A child custody and visitation arrangement
- The amount and duration of child support
Do you have to cite grounds (reason) when filing for a dissolution of marriage?
No. Ohio domestic relations courts do not require spouses to state why their marriage ends to qualify for a dissolution of marriage.
How much does dissolution of marriage cost in Ohio?
A dissolution is a much more affordable way to end a marriage. Filing fees are usually cheaper as they are often split between the spouses rather than paid by both spouses separately. Filing fees for an Ohio dissolution of marriage can be anywhere from $150 to $400. There is also less attorney involvement in a dissolution since the spouses are in agreement, which allows the couple to save even more money.
How long does it take to get a dissolution of marriage in Ohio?
Once a couple files for a dissolution, the process can take anywhere between 30 to 90 days. The only other factor that affects the length of time it takes to be granted a dissolution is how long it takes for the couple to agree to all of the terms relating to the ending of their marriage.
Is the dissolution of marriage process faster than getting a divorce?
A dissolution is typically a much faster process than a divorce. This is because couples seeking dissolution cooperate and agree to its terms, allowing them to skip many steps required in a divorce.
When couples seek a divorce instead, it likely means they do not agree on one or more issues. When they disagree, they must either go back and forth between their attorneys, seek the assistance of a mediator, or ultimately have a judge decide the unresolved matters on their behalf, which all make the process longer.
What are the Ohio requirements for a dissolution?
In Ohio, there are two requirements for dissolution; a residency requirement and a written separation agreement.
Ohio requires that you or your spouse must have been an Ohio resident for at least six months before filing your dissolution paperwork.
Couples must also have a written separation agreement that fully addresses all aspects of the termination of their marriage.
Do I need an attorney to get a dissolution of marriage in Ohio?
If your divorce is uncontested, meaning you and your spouse agree to end the marriage and all aspects of the dissolution, you will likely avoid much of the need for an attorney. However, it is always a good idea to seek advice from an Ohio dissolution of marriage lawyer. A knowledgeable family law attorney will explain your rights, guide you through the process, and review the final separation agreement to ensure it aligns with your best interests. Most Counties in Ohio have various “Local Rules” that must be followed, which can complicate the process.
Consult with our Dissolution of Marriage Lawyer in Ohio
Deciding whether to seek a divorce or dissolution can be complicated. Even when couples begin pursuing a dissolution, issues can arise that jeopardize their ability to avoid a traditional divorce. To determine your best option or to get help when seeking a dissolution, we recommend speaking to an experienced family law attorney in Ohio.
At Slater & Zurz, we are proud to have helped our clients through the often complex and emotional process of dissolution and divorce. Our team has also assisted numerous couples in resolving family law issues, such as child custody and child support matters. Call our family law attorneys when you need experienced and compassionate legal guidance. We offer initial consultations and have offices across North East Ohio to serve you. Our locations include Akron, Canton, and Cleveland.