Deciding to move forward represents a life-changing and challenging event. While most couples do not plan for divorce, over half of marriages in Ohio end in divorce.

An essential step in preparing for a divorce is understanding how the divorce process works in Ohio. In many cases, the divorce process gets complicated quickly. Therefore it’s always a good idea to seek the assistance of a qualified divorce lawyer in Akron, Ohio, to avoid delays and protect your rights.

An Akron divorce lawyer works to protect your interests and help you seek the best path forward as you begin a new chapter in your life.  

Different Types of Divorce

Ohio provides residents different methods of dissolving their marriage. Your Akron divorce attorney works with you to determine the best approach for your dissolution. Methods of dissolution include the following:

No Fault Dissolution of Marriage

With a no-fault dissolution, both parties file their petition together requesting a dissolution of their marriage. 

To pursue a dissolution, the parties must agree on all issues. These issues span property division, child custody, and other essential matters. Your attorneys can negotiate to reach a resolution, and you may even consider seeking the assistance of a mediator.

A mediator serves as a neutral party to help you resolve the issues relating to your divorce. Mediation may serve parties that work well together to resolve issues amicably.

Adversarial Divorce Proceedings

In an adversarial proceeding, one spouse files against the other, alleging grounds for divorce. The court must determine issues about the divorce. 

Review of your distinct circumstances involved in your divorce with your Akron divorce attorney. These facts aid in determining what method best serves your interests as you transition to life as a single person. 

How Do I File for Divorce in Akron?

Multiple requirements must be satisfied to file for divorce. A divorce lawyer in Akron, Ohio, can review your particular situation to determine whether you meet the requirements for filing for divorce in Akron. 

Residency Requirements 

Ohio law requires that either you or your spouse must satisfy the residency requirements of living in Ohio for at least six months before you file for divorce. Couples seeking a divorce in Ohio must file in the county in Ohio in which they reside.

Either you or your spouse must live for at least 90 days in the Ohio county where the dissolution is filed. If you have just moved to Ohio or your county, you must wait until you satisfy these residency requirements to file for divorce.  

Documents to File

Understanding what documents to file for your divorce gets complicated quickly. The general forms required for a divorce in Ohio include the following:

  • Divorce complaint. This document initiates the divorce process and outlines specific requests in the divorce.
  • Summons. The summons serves to notify your spouse of the divorce and provides the timeline for responding to the complaint. A summons must be served on your spouse by a third party. 
  • Answer to complaint for divorce. Include a blank answer to the complaint for your spouse to complete in response to the complaint. 
  • Financial affidavits. Financial affidavits consist of financial disclosure documents providing detailed information about each spouse’s income, assets, debts, and liabilities. 
  • Separation agreement. If the parties have reached an agreement, the separation agreement provides the terms they have agreed to in their dissolution. 
  • Divorce decree. When your divorce is finalized, the judge signs the divorce decree. 

If there are minor children of the marriage, the court requires the completion of additional forms for filing with the court, including the following:

  • Parenting proceeding affidavit. This form determines who gets custody rights and visitation rights to any minor children. The form requires information about where the minor children lived the prior five years and the other parties with whom they reside. 
  • Shared parenting plan or sole custody agreement. A shared parenting plan essentially provides that the parties share joint custody of the minor child or children. A sole custody agreement provides that one parent has sole custody of the child and is the legal guardian and sole decision-maker regarding the child. 
  • Child support worksheet. Child support payments from one spouse to another may be calculated by the child support worksheet. 
  • Health insurance affidavit. The health insurance affidavit reveals what health insurance is available for the minor children of the marriage. This form may also determine child support. 

Speak with a divorce attorney in Akron, Ohio, to avoid delays and procedural issues with your divorce filing. Be aware that some Ohio counties may require additional forms specific to their county. 

What Is Spousal Support?

In Ohio, spousal support used to be referred to as alimony. Spousal support refers to payments made by one spouse to another after a divorce. Spousal support is based on the income of one spouse compared to the needs of the other.

In some situations, your Akron divorce attorney may assist in obtaining temporary spousal support for you while your divorce is pending. The court may award temporary spousal support if you experience difficulty supporting yourself as you move forward with your dissolution.

The court considers multiple factors when determining spousal support awards, including the following:

  • Income from each party;
  • Earning ability of each party;
  • Ages and physical capability of each party; 
  • Retirement benefits of each party;
  • Length of marriage;
  • Standard of living of the parties established during the marriage;
  • Education of both parties;
  • Assets and liabilities of each party; 
  • Whether either party contributed to the earning, education, or training of the other during the marriage;
  • The time and expense it would take for one party to acquire the training and experience to obtain appropriate employment;
  • The tax consequences of spousal support payments; 
  • The lost income capability of one party resulting from that party devotion to domestic duties; and
  • Other relevant factors. 

Spousal support may end on a particular date or continue indefinitely for an especially long marriage. Typically, the court will order spousal support to last for a period of a few years. 

What Is Child Support? 

Your divorce lawyer in Akron, Ohio, understands that Ohio law dictates that both parents financially support their children until they reach 18. The parent without primary physical custody of the minor child or children pays child support to the parent with primary custody.

The number of children between the parties and the combined parental income contribute to determining child support. Child support in Ohio uses a particularly complicated formula.

Therefore, it’s essential to seek the counsel of a qualified Akron divorce lawyer to assist you throughout your divorce. Calculations of child support differ for parents with shared custody, sole custody, or split parental rights. 

How Do I Choose the Best Divorce Attorney in Akron Ohio?

Choosing the best divorce attorney in Akron, Ohio, may take time. It’s essential to protect your rights as you move through the dissolution process. 

The attorneys at the McCleery Law Firm focus their practice on family law. When people contact the McCleery Law Firm, they find attorneys who understand the path forward for clients and assist them through that process.

Our lawyers exhibit unparalleled advocacy in the courtroom and build strong relationships with our clients. Our attorneys are well-versed in all family law areas in Ohio and enjoy established and admirable reputations as zealous advocates for our family law clients. 

Our Akron divorce lawyers work tirelessly to seek the best possible solutions to suit your needs as you embark on a new chapter in your life. We know how difficult a dissolution can be and serve to ease that stress by representing you and your interests on your behalf.

Contact our office today for a free consultation to discuss the facts of your case.