Once you’ve made the difficult decision to get a divorce, you want to close that chapter of your life as quickly as possible. So, how long does a divorce take in Ohio? Since there are a lot of steps involved in getting a divorce, the whole process can vary in length.

In general, you should expect the divorce process to take anywhere from several months to a couple of years. The timeline can vary based on the complexity of the divorce case, however.

To qualify for a divorce in Ohio, you must meet the following requirements:

  1. You or your spouse must have resided in Ohio for at least 6 months
  2. You or your spouse must have lived in the county where you are filing for at least 90 days
  3. If you or your spouse is pregnant, you must wait until after birth to finalize your divorce

Contested vs. Uncontested Divorces: How Long Do They Take?

Not surprisingly, a lot of issues need to be resolved when a couple goes through a divorce. While both parties can easily settle some issues before even filing for divorce, other issues may require litigation or court intervention to be settled amicably.

A couple’s ability to agree on major issues will determine if a divorce is uncontested or contested. Contested divorces almost always take more time than uncontested ones.

Some of the issues that can prolong a divorce include:

  • Child support or custody
  • Spousal support
  • Real estate
  • Tax complications
  • Division of assets and debt
  • Business valuation
  • Custody/Psychological Evaluation

How Long Does an Uncontested Divorce Take?

If you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse can agree on all major issues surrounding your divorce, you can enter into the divorce uncontested.

Depending on the backlogs in Ohio courts, the judges’ availability to sign a Final Decree, and whether or not the court has any questions regarding submitted documentation, an uncontested divorce in Ohio typically takes between 45 and 90 days.

In an uncontested divorce, only one spouse and one character witness are required to attend a final hearing in front of a judge. In most cases, the hearings for an uncontested divorce are no more than 15 minutes.

How Long Does a Contested Divorce Take?

A contested divorce is usually much more complex than an uncontested divorce. This type of divorce occurs when divorcing spouses can’t agree on major issues without the court’s intervention.

During a contested divorce, both parties engage in discovery and aim to give their side the best possible outcome. A qualified divorce attorney is necessary on both sides to plan a deposition and attend any pre-trial and motion hearings.

If both spouses’ divorce lawyers can not meet an agreement, an Ohio judge will hear all evidence on contested issues at a trial that could last anywhere from a couple of hours to a couple of weeks.

If a contested divorce is complicated or heavily contested, it could last anywhere from a year or more to finalize the divorce in Ohio. The Ohio Supreme Court has guidelines that say a divorce without children is supposed to take no more than a year and a divorce with children should take no more than 18 months. Courts try and stick to these guidelines but in practice cases can take longer than 18 months to get to trial.

Ready to start the process? Seeking out reliable and qualified advice from an Ohio divorce attorney can help you and your ex-spouse find the quickest and most amicable way to settle your divorce.

Navigate Your Separation With a Trusted and Certified Ohio Divorce Attorney

Every divorce is unique. You need an Ohio Bar Association Certified Family Law Specialist who can walk you through the nuances associated with divorce in a way that makes you confident and comfortable. By working with a skilled and trusted attorney, you can have the support you need to navigate the process and work towards a positive resolution. Contact the Law Offices of Kenneth R. Kline LLC for a risk-free divorce consultation in Columbus, Ohio.

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