Divorce Lawyer in Cincinnati
and Northern Kentucky
A divorce is a lawsuit. The party seeking the lawsuit (plaintiff) files a complaint for divorce with the clerk of courts and the other party (defendant) is formally served with the complaint. The complaint requests the court, among other things, to order the marriage to the defendant be terminated. A divorce is sometimes necessary as it allows the plaintiff and the defendant to obtain court orders to compel or restrain certain actions.
When one party brings an action for divorce, the court will address the division of marital property (including the restoration of separate property), spousal support, child support, and the allocation of parental rights and responsibilities. In the event the parties do not resolve these issues, evidence will be submitted to the judge or magistrate and they will issue a decision regarding the issues presented. Once the issues have been decided, the marriage will be terminated and the divorce will be final.
Divorce 101: The Basics
I have put together some important facts regarding the divorce process to help you better understand the basics of terminating your marriage by way of divorce.
- Filing a Complaint for Divorce: The first step in a divorce is the filing of a complaint for divorce. This document is written by one spouse and served to the other in order to alert them that their partner would like to pursue a divorce.
- Temporary Orders: After a complaint has been filed and answered, the divorce process will officially begin. Temporary orders are sometimes put in place to ensure that bills and other financial obligations are taken care of while the spouses sort out their future arrangements. These Temporary Orders can relate to parenting, child support, spousal support, and payment of bills, just to name a few.
- Discovery Process: The discovery process is a period of time set aside for both parties to get the information they need about income, parenting, assets, debts, and other factors that may be important during the divorce.
- Divorce Settlement is Attempted: Some couples may be able to find an agreeable arrangement without a formal trial and if this is the case, settlement may be an option. This can be accomplished through mediation, settlement conferences with the parties and their attorneys, or the couple’s own arrangement. Achieving a resolution in this manner often saves time and money for the spouses.
- Trial is Completed: If no agreement can be reached, the couple will be required to go to court. This process can take many weeks to complete and may require the use of witnesses, attorneys, and judges. Once both sides have presented their cases, a finalized decree of divorce will be issued to the couple and their marriage will be terminated.
To find out more about the divorce process in Ohio/NKY and your rights and obligations, contact Zachary D. Smith, LLC today. We can guide you through this complicated and challenging time.