The marriage dissolution rate has declined recently, but it is still twice as high as it was a generation ago. That is especially true of subsequent marriages. So, if your marriage is ending for one reason or another, you are certainly not alone.

Divorce is an emotional time for many people, and that might be putting it mildly. The more people know what to expect in a marriage dissolution, the easier the process is to handle. The more effective your divorce attorney near Xenia is, the better the outcome will be for you and your family. Every case is different, but they all follow the same general outline.

Beginning the Process

Filing divorce paperwork is often either the easiest or most complex portion of a marriage dissolution case.

Frequently, the spouses have been separated for several months before someone formally files for divorce. By that time, one spouse has often abandoned the marriage, even if the couple had children. 

Ohio law requires personal service of process in most cases. If the filing spouse has no contact information for the nonfiling spouse, that is not easy to do. First, the filing spouse must try to locate the other spouse. There is no need to hire a private investigator, but the filing spouse must show due diligence.

Second, if the nonfiling spouse is still AWOL, alternative service, such as service by publication, might be available. Service via Facebook, Twitter, and other social media is arguably more effective, but such methods are not yet legal in Ohio.

A few weeks later, the judge usually holds a temporary hearing. At this hearing, the judge issues important orders about financial support and parenting time.

Technically, these orders expire when the divorce becomes final. Frequently, however, the temporary orders serve as the blueprint for the final orders, particularly in terms of the parenting time division. So, if a divorce attorney near Xenia does not aggressively represent you at this hearing, it is difficult to successfully resolve the marriage dissolution.

Ending the Process

Only a small number of divorce cases go to trial. That is probably a good thing because, in most cases, emotional courtroom showdowns benefit no one. Instead, either informal or formal mediation resolves most of these matters.

Informal mediation between the divorce attorneys near Xenia often begins as soon as the paperwork is filed. Frequently, the parties agree on most major issues, such as property division and parenting time. Attorneys are good negotiators. So, they are usually able to resolve differences in their clients’ favor.

Greene County judges often order formal mediation in contested divorce cases. A third-party mediator meets with both sides and hears brief opening arguments. Then, the parties retire to separate rooms while the mediator conducts shuttle diplomacy. After several hours of conveying settlement offers and counteroffers back and forth, these matters usually settle, even if the parties were rather far apart on most issues.

Contact a Dedicated Attorney

Knowing what to expect makes the marriage dissolution process easier. For a free consultation with an experienced divorce attorney near Xenia, contact the Comunale Law Office. We routinely handle matters in Greene County and nearby jurisdictions.