If an Ohio couple wishes to end their marriage, each party must sign a dissolution of marriage petition. The petition must have a separation agreement attached to it that has been agreed to by both spouses. A separation agreement should determine how property is to be divided, if there will be spousal support given to either party and how parental rights are divided if a couple has minor children.
This agreement may also allow the court to modify the terms of a spousal support or property division agreement. If authorization is granted to the court to alter a property division arrangement, it will be done with the written or otherwise express consent of both spouses. Either spouse may file an amended agreement at any time prior to a hearing regarding the petition to dissolve the marriage.
If the couple has minor children, the parents may submit a plan under which they will divide parental duties and responsibilities. The plan should address who the custodial parent is, the amount of child support being paid and how parenting time is determined. The court may decide to launch an investigation in accordance with the Rules of Civil Procedure once it receives the petition.
People who are thinking about getting a divorce may want to meet with an attorney at the outset in order to see what legal issues will need to be addressed. For example, if one or both parties have certain types of retirement accounts that are to be divided, it will in most cases be necessary to prepare and file with the court a qualified domestic relations order.