Divorce / Dissolution / Custody / Support

Frequently Asked Questions about Family Law

What is the difference between a divorce and a dissolution?

A divorce is a lawsuit between spouses in which the person seeking a divorce is requesting that a domestic relations court terminate the marriage, divide marital property equitably, and determine issues of custody, parenting time and support in cases in which there are minor children.

A dissolution is a proceeding in which spouses seek to terminate their marriage but have reached an agreement as to the division of marital property, the allocation of custody, parenting time and support in cases with minor children, and all other issues necessary to terminate the marriage.  In such a case, the spouses sign their agreement before opening a case at Court and then submit that agreement to the Court with a written request for a dissolution of marriage.

Other than having an agreement before involving the Court, are there other advantages to a dissolution?

A dissolution does have benefits in addition to the parties having already reached an agreement before they open a case at Court.   Under Ohio law, a dissolution must be completed within ninety days of opening the case whereas in a divorce, the case can last for many months and in some situations, several years.  Because of the differences in duration of divorce and dissolution cases, a dissolution is significantly less costly than a divorce.

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