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Is Ohio an At-Fault Divorce State?

By April 19, 2021April 22nd, 2021No Comments

Some states legally observe one type of divorce, and some observe more than one. This post outlines which types are legal in Ohio.

What is An At-Fault Divorce?

In this type of divorce, one spouse must file a lawsuit alleging grounds for the divorce, which may include adultery, gross neglect of duty, extreme cruelty, or other grounds. These types of divorces are typically contested and contentious. However, despite grounds being required in the initial filing, the marriage can still be terminated on the ground of “incompatibility”, a somewhat neutral ground, as the parties often decide to allocate their time and resources litigating other issues (such as property division, spousal support, parenting, etc.).

What About Dissolution of Marriage?

If both spouses have resolved all of the issues pertaining to their split, they can file for a “dissolution.” To do a dissolution, the couple must have a formal agreement drafted and executed wherein they agree on all issues required to terminate the marriage. The agreement is presented to the court, along with a petition, and the marriage can legally end within 30-90 days. Both spouses must appear in court and testify under oath to the validity of the separation.

If the relationship between spouses becomes contentious prior to the dissolution being official, the dissolution can be converted back into a traditional divorce complaint. Additionally, there are certain residency requirements to follow. The one filing the paperwork must have been an Ohio resident for at least six months prior to the filing.


Divorce can be a highly emotional and difficult process. It’s certainly a life event you shouldn’t go through without a neutral party representing your rights and interests. Professional legal representation can make all the difference when it comes to protecting your quality of life and property. Call Garretson & Holcomb, LLC today at (513) 863-6600 to learn more.

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