The divorce process can be difficult for families, especially those who do not have legal representation, as there are a number of procedural rules that divorcing parties must comply with before their marriage can be dissolved. To ensure that your own divorce is not unnecessarily delayed, you should consider speaking with an experienced New Franklin divorce attorney who can walk you through the filing process.
When it comes to divorce, Ohio is an equitable division state, which means that all of a couple’s marital property is divided equitably upon dissolution. According to Ohio law, marital property is any interest in real or personal property owned by either spouse and that was acquired during the marriage, including retirement benefits. Separate property, on the other hand, is made up of assets that were acquired prior to a marriage, or were given as a gift or an inheritance to one spouse alone during the marriage. Even in these cases, the income and appreciation on separate assets can be divided if a couple earned income on the property, or it appreciated in value during the marriage as a result of the couple’s labor or monetary contribution. Other examples of assets that qualify as separate property include:
It is important to note that “equitably” does not always mean equally, so it is critical for those who are going through a divorce to carefully identify what qualifies as separate and marital property.
Once all of a couple’s property is identified and categorized, the court will take a number of factors into consideration before division, including:
While important to determining how property will be divided upon divorce, some of these factors also play a critical role in the court’s evaluation of whether spousal support is appropriate.
In Ohio, courts are willing to award alimony to a former spouse for sustenance and support. Spousal support can take the form of a lump sum payment or installments from future income, although the amount, nature, and duration of the support requires further analysis of the parties’ income, each spouse’s earning abilities, the ages of each spouse, the duration of the marriage, whether one of the parties is a custodian for minor children, and a series of other factors. These awards can also be modified at a later date, if one of the parties undergoes a substantial change in circumstances.
If you and your spouse are thinking about filing for divorce, please contact Fout Law at 330-437-7455 to speak with an experienced New Franklin divorce lawyer who can explain your legal options.