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Columbus Family Law Blog

Aspects of equitable distribution within divorce

Couples in Ohio that are preparing to divorce must educate themselves on the manner in which their marital wealth will be divided. This practice is guided by the concept of "equitable distribution," in which a court decides upon a fair distribution of all assets amassed within and prior to the marriage. This is not always a 50/50 split, and it is important to understand how "equitable" will be determined during a divorce.

In order to decide how much of a particular asset should be granted to each spouse, the court considers the active and passive appreciation of property. For example, if a couple owns a business but only one spouse contributes to the growth, development and profitability of that business, he or she would be due a greater share of the asset's wealth. That is because one spouse is primarily responsible for the active appreciation of the business.

Divorce brings changes in other relationships, too

When an Ohio marriage ends, both spouses turn their focus toward rebuilding their lives in the manner of their choosing. Divorce obviously alters the relationship between former partners, but many are unprepared for the changes that occur within their other relationships, as well. In many cases, the end of a marriage alters the connection between the divorced spouse and certain friends and family members. For those who wish to remain connected with these people, it is important to tread carefully.

While divorce has become far more common than in generations past, many people still hold strong beliefs about the sanctity of marriage. When someone they know goes through a divorce, it can be difficult to connect with that person in the same way as before. Often, friends and family members will distance themselves from a newly divorced individual, sometimes without consciously knowing why.

Women must protect themselves during divorce

For many women in Ohio, going through a divorce is a difficult process. Not only do they have to cope with the end of their marriage, but there is also an imbalance of power within their relationship; one that can make it hard to achieve a fair divorce settlement. Women must take steps to protect their interests during a divorce, especially those who have played a minor role in the financial side of their marriage.

When a woman is unsure about the scope of marital wealth, it can be a challenge to negotiate a fair division of assets. Even worse, women who have not been active in creating and implementing the family's budget may not have the skills required to work out their own post-divorce budget. This can lead to financial troubles in the years to come, and is an issue that must be addressed as early as possible during a divorce.

Don???t get caught up in a child support scam

Parents in Ohio who are expected to contribute to the financial care and upkeep of their children should be aware of a recently uncovered scam. Two individuals have been arrested for their involvement in an operation aimed at stealing money from parents, and ultimately, from the children that were intended to benefit from child support payments. The story serves as a cautionary tale for all parents who make or receive child support.

The two men opened multiple businesses that promised to aid parents in the collection of unpaid child support. When a custodial parent contacted the businesses, they were urged to provide a great deal of information about the other parent. The men then began contacting the non-custodial parent to attempt to collect the outstanding child support payments. Some individuals received threats that they could lose their job, have their driving provilege revoked or even go to jail if they did not pay.

Don't let your divorce go to the dogs

Many Ohio residents are extremely attached to their pets, so much so that a significant portion of their time, attention and disposable income is dedicated to pet care and affection. When those individuals marry, they often go to great lengths to ensure that their animals will be accepted and cared for by the new spouse. However, many fail to consider how their beloved pet will factor into a divorce, if and when the marriage comes to an end.

Attorneys assert that including pets within prenuptial agreements is a trend that is on the rise. More and more couples are beginning to think about which party would get "custody" of a pet in the event of a divorce. For those in Ohio who are truly dedicated to their animals, this may be no more unusual than documenting which party has the right to retain the family silver or grandmother's china.

Kids and divorce: How they really feel

When Ohio parents are considering divorce, the impact that this decision will have on their children is one of the most pressing concerns. It is undeniable that the end of a marriage will bring a sea change to the lives of one's kids, but that impact does is not always a negative one. In many cases, children experience positive outcomes when their parents choose to divorce.

For example, many parents go through years of struggle before deciding to go their separate ways. Even when parents make an effort to conceal their marital problems from their kids, the reality is that children are aware of discord within the family. For those who argue and fight openly, the stress level for kids is even greater. Often, children are relieved when divorce allows both Mom and Dad to live happier lives as single parents.

Forensic accountant can help in an Ohio divorce

Love can be a complex idea with various nuances, which can make the meaning of marriage dependent upon each couple as well. However, legally speaking in Ohio, much of a divorce is simply about the division of marital assets and debts. Although sometimes this can turn out to be a simple task, many times this can be tricky even during an amicable divorce. It can be even more challenging for couples with complex financial assets or in the case of suspected fraud by one of the spouses.

Although most of the straightforward types of assets, such as vehicles, real estate, credit card debts and bank accounts are more easily divided, there are other types of financially complex assets which may not be as straightforward. Some of these more complex financial assets may include stock options, restricted stocks and deferred compensation. Other types of complex assets may include closely held businesses, complex partnership agreements and professional practices.

Do I qualify for an uncontested divorce in Ohio?

When Ohio couples make the decision to divorce, they typically do not do so lightly. Whatever the reason, they have to make choices about how they will divide property, assets or child care. Some couples are able to make these agreements fairly easily and with minimal conflict. These couples might consider filing for an uncontested divorce, which has potential advantages. There are certain guidelines to qualify for this type of divorce, and couples may need assistance in determining if it is an option for them.

Couples who do not have major disagreements on the specifics of their divorce are typically best-suited to file for an uncontested divorce. They agree on how they will both handle property and asset separation, and they either have no children or concur on how they will care for them. Typically, the divorce is still filed for by one spouse, but the process is much smoother, needing less documentation and paperwork. As long as the other spouse is in agreement or makes no effort to oppose, an uncontested divorce can proceed.

Child custody: pursuing what is best for all parties

Determining child custody is one of the hardest aspects of a divorce. Even the most amicable of divorces can become tense and complicated when a couple begins to discuss child custody arrangements. One of the most important things for Ohio couples to remember is that there are ways to pursue what is best for all parties.

When going through a divorce, parents can work together to draft a parenting plan. It is best when these plans are established with the qualified assistance of an experienced legal representative. Your lawyer can help you compromise and come to an agreement that is the most beneficial for both the parents and the children, including details that are specific for the individual situation.

Collaborative divorce can be good for business

When an Ohio couple owns a business together, the end of their marriage can be far more complicated than the norm. Dividing a business is, well, a tricky business. The process can drag on for a considerable amount of time, especially if the divorce is contentious in nature. For those business owners who can work together to resolve both the end of their marriage and the division of their company, collaboration can be an excellent divorce option.

In collaboration, both spouses enter into the process with a firm commitment to work out the details of their divorce on their own, outside of a courtroom. From that point forward, the parties work together with the assistance of their respective attorneys to reach a fair division of assets. When it comes to dividing a business, a collaborative approach puts the focus on maintaining the highest possible value of the company throughout the process.

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