Divorce is never an easy process, and disagreements between spouses can make it even more complicated over key issues such as property division, child custody, and support. When couples decide to end their marriage, they can take two primary paths: contested vs. uncontested divorce.
While both options can lead to the dissolution of a marriage, there are significant differences between the approaches regarding time, cost, and the level of control each party has over the outcome. By taking a closer look at contested vs. uncontested divorce, you can more confidently decide which path is right for you.
Contested Divorce in Ohio
If you or your ex-spouse chooses to pursue a contested divorce, there are some things you need to know. Ohio is a “no-fault” divorce state, which means that neither spouse has to prove that the other spouse did something wrong to cause the divorce. The only requirement for getting a divorce in Ohio is that one of the spouses must have been a resident of the state for at least six months before filing for divorce. You must secure a qualified Ohio divorce attorney to represent you in court and advocate for your best interests.
When a divorce is contested in Ohio, the case will typically go through the court system, which can be a lengthy and expensive process. The court may hold hearings, take evidence, and ultimately make a decision on the disputed issues if the parties are unable to reach an agreement through negotiation or mediation.
Some other things to know about contested divorces:
- Division of Property: Ohio is an equitable distribution state, which means that in a contested divorce, the court will divide the marital property in a manner that is fair, but not necessarily equal. The court will consider factors such as the length of the marriage, each party’s income and earning capacity, and the contributions each party made to the marriage when dividing the property.
- Child Custody: In a contested divorce involving children, the court will consider what is in the child’s best interests when making a custody determination. Factors such as the child’s relationship with each parent, and each parent’s ability to provide for the child’s physical and emotional needs will be considered.
- Child Support: In a contested divorce involving children, the court will also consider the child’s needs when determining child support. Ohio uses a set of guidelines to determine child support payments based on each parent’s income.
- Spousal Support: Spousal support, also known as alimony, may be awarded in a contested divorce in Ohio. The court will consider factors such as the length of the marriage, each party’s income and earning capacity, and the standard of living established during the marriage when deciding whether to award spousal support and how much to award.
- Timeframe and Cost: A contested divorce in Ohio can take several months or even years to resolve, depending on the complexity of the issues involved and the court’s schedule. Contested divorces can also be expensive, as each spouse will need to pay their own attorney fees.
Uncontested Divorce in Ohio
In Ohio, an uncontested divorce is one in which the spouses agree on all issues related to the divorce, including property division, child custody, and support. In an uncontested divorce, the spouses typically work together to reach a mutually agreeable settlement, which can be submitted to the court for approval.
Some other things to know about uncontested divorces:
- Legal Representation: While it is not required, it is recommended that each party hires their own divorce attorney to review the settlement agreement and ensure that their interests are protected.
- Court Approval: Once the parties have reached a settlement agreement, they must submit it to the court for approval. The court will review the contract to ensure that it is fair and legally enforceable, and if approved, the divorce will be granted.
- Timeframe and Cost: An uncontested divorce in Ohio can be completed more quickly and with lower costs than a contested divorce. However, the timeframe and cost of an uncontested divorce can vary depending on the complexity of the issues involved and the court’s schedule.
- Other Benefits: An uncontested divorce can provide several benefits, including lower costs, a faster resolution, and more control over the outcome of the divorce. It can also be less stressful and less adversarial than a contested divorce.
Overall, an uncontested divorce in Ohio can be a viable option for couples who can work together to reach a mutually agreeable settlement. It is essential to consult with an experienced family law attorney to ensure that your interests are protected and that the settlement agreement is fair and legally enforceable.
Seek Guidance From a Qualified Divorce Attorney in Ohio
Selecting the right divorce attorney in Ohio is crucial, as they will act as a vital mediator throughout the entire process. The Law Offices of Kenneth R. Kline LLC offers effective communication, ensuring a positive environment and a brighter future for you. With our help, you can rest assured that open lines of communication will be maintained throughout your divorce proceedings. Take the first step. Get a risk-free consultation by contacting us today.