Cincinnati Family Law & Divorce Blog: You Need Not Worry That Custody Decisions Are Permanent

At the termination of a marriage, parents are encouraged to reach agreements about the care of their children, to avoid the court making those decisions.   One of the biggest worries parents have, whether reaching their own agreement, or allowing the court to do so, is that they will be stuck with a parenting allocation or a fixed amount of child support for the duration of their child's minority. This is one worry that is unfounded.   The court retains the authority ("maintains jurisdiction") to modify all orders concerning children. This means that parents may ask the court to change the parenting schedule, modify child support, terminate shared parenting and order sole custody and any other matter involving children. The law recognizes that the needs of children change over time, and recognizes it is the obligation of the court to determine what is in the best interest of a child at any given time. There are...

Cincinnati Family Law & Divorce Blog: Can I Relocate During or After My Divorce?

At the termination of a marriage, parents are encouraged to reach agreements about the care of their children, to avoid the court making those decisions.   One of the biggest worries parents have, whether reaching their own agreement, or allowing the court to do so, is that they will be stuck with a parenting allocation or a fixed amount of child support for the duration of their child's minority. This is one worry that is unfounded.   The court retains the authority ("maintains jurisdiction") to modify all orders concerning children. This means that parents may ask the court to change the parenting schedule, modify child support, terminate shared parenting and order sole custody and any other matter involving children. The law recognizes that the needs of children change over time, and recognizes it is the obligation of the court to determine what is in the best interest of a child at any given time. There are...

Cincinnati Family Law & Divorce Blog: Is Ohio a No Fault State?

According to Ohio statutes, grounds must exist to terminate a marriage by divorce.  There are eleven grounds that permit a court to terminate a marriage.  The first nine listed are considered “fault” grounds and the tenth ground of “living separate and apart without cohabitation for one year” is considered a “no fault” ground.  Technically, incompatibility is not a ground for divorce, rather a status of the marriage that must be agreed upon by both parties which when agreed upon, allows a court to grant a divorce.   As a practical matter, the majority of divorces are granted because the parties agree they are incompatible.  The reason many people are seeking a divorce due to incompatibility or living separate and apart for more than one year is to avoid public accusations of wrongdoing.   In the rare case where the parties do not agree that they are incompatible and they have not lived apart for...

Cincinnati Family Law & Divorce Blog: How Does Bankruptcy Impact Divorce?

It is not uncommon for the fields of bankruptcy law and divorce law to intersect. One way this can happen is if one or both parties file for bankruptcy while a divorce action is pending.  Another way is if one party seeks to be relieved (“discharged”) from an obligation that arose out of a divorce or dissolution by filing for bankruptcy. This blog post will attempt to give a general overview of what happens in these specific situations.   If a divorce action is pending and one or both parties file for bankruptcy, a court can still carry on aspects of the divorce case.  While the law provides an automatic suspension (“stay”) of judicial proceedings, there are several exceptions.  A court can still hear cases to establish paternity, establish or modify spousal support or child support, hear cases concerning child custody or visitation issues, or hold hearings related to domestic violence (11...

Cincinnati Family Law & Divorce Blog: How Will My Retirement Be Divided?

In a divorce or dissolution, the parties will divide their marital assets. Often, the largest and most valuable assets accumulated during the marriage are their retirement accounts. In dividing these assets, there are a number of important considerations to consider.   First and foremost, retirement benefits are treated differently than other assets because they have different tax consequences. In most cases, the retirement benefits are pre-tax, meaning that once the party receives the benefit or draws from the balance of the account, he or she will pay income tax on that benefit. For this reason, these assets are typically not offset with the value of other assets such as bank accounts or the equity in a residence, or, if they are, tax adjustments will be made. In most cases, the retirement accounts are divided between the parties with separate court orders, such as a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) or a Division...

Cincinnati Family Law & Divorce Blog: Who Has The Right to Remain in the Marital Home?

In nearly all divorce cases, the question of what to do with the marital home will arise at some point. In some cases it is easy, neither party wants to stay and the home is sold, or only one party wants to stay and that person keeps the residence. But what about the cases where both parties want to stay in the marital home? How does the court decide? There are several factors that may come into consideration.   Can you refinance? Often times, the mortgage on the marital home is in both parties’ names. This means that the party who wishes to stay in the home will typically need to prove that he or she has the present ability to refinance the loan into his or her own name. Refinances are usually required for two primary reasons; (1) the court favors financial disentanglement of parties to divorce cases, and (2) it...