Divorce and dissolution are the two main ways of ending a marriage.

In Summit County, if you have questions about divorce and dissolution and which is best for you, contact a local and experienced divorce lawyer. This is the best way to successfully navigate the Summit County Domestic Relations Court.

What Is a Divorce?

A divorce is a legal process that ends a marriage by establishing grounds that one spouse is “at fault.” Acceptable grounds for divorce are:

  • Adultery
  • Willful absence from the marriage for more than one year
  • Extreme cruelty or abuse
  • Habitual drunkenness or drug addiction
  • Gross neglect of duty
  • Imprisonment

A divorce requires that a witness supports the claims made by the complaining party (plaintiff).

No-Fault Divorce in Ohio

Ohio does allow “no-fault” grounds for divorce when the spouses have been living separately for one year (without interruption), and both parties claim incompatibility. If either party denies the incompatibility, the court will not grant a no-fault divorce.

What Is a Dissolution?

A dissolution is a legal action where both spouses agree to terminate their marriage. To obtain a dissolution of marriage in Summit County, both parties must file a petition jointly along with a separation agreement.

The separation agreement must include mutual decisions on child custody, property division, debt allocation, spousal and child support, and other issues. The court will review the separation agreement and has the right to question both parties.

Usually, the court grants the dissolution and incorporates it into a court order.

Differences Between a Divorce and Dissolution

While both a divorce and a dissolution are legal methods of ending a marriage, they are distinct differences. By knowing the difference, you can choose which process is best for you in your specific situation.

Grounds to Terminate the Marriage

As mentioned above, a divorce typically involves grounds for terminating a marriage. One party is usually allocating fault to the other person for causing the disintegration of the union. However, with a dissolution, neither party asserts grounds for the end of the marriage.

Which Is Faster?

Divorces typically take longer than a dissolution unless the divorce is no-fault and uncontested.

A dissolution takes much less time than a typical divorce. The hearing is 30-90 days AFTER paperwork is filed.

A contested divorce can take several months or even years to complete. During a divorce, there might be many hearings to determine the merits of temporary requests, property division, debt allocation, and other issues. If the parties cannot agree on the divorce terms through an agreement, the judge or magistrate will hear the case and decide on the issues.

It is not always necessary for both parties to appear at the final hearing for a divorce.

A Divorce Lawyer Can Help You Decide What Is Best

When deciding if a dissolution or a divorce is the best option, you should consult with a divorce lawyer. A lawyer can help you understand your rights and responsibilities in your specific situation.

Suppose you want to end your marriage quickly, and you and your spouse agree about the major issues upon termination. In that case, a dissolution might be best. However, if you and your spouse can’t agree on property allocation, child custody, or even ending the marriage, you have no option but a divorce.

Erb Legal can help you evaluate all of these issues so that you can decide your situation. Call 330-249-1778 or use our online form to schedule a consultation.

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