ohio family law

Family law in Ohio covers various legal issues, such as divorce, child custody, spousal support, and property division. Sometimes, it is not easy to know the intricacies of these laws. For that reason, we have created a simple breakdown to help you understand Family Law 101 in Ohio. 


When a marriage does not work out, it may be time for a divorce. Here are a few points to consider in the state. 

What Are the Grounds for Divorce?

Ohio allows both fault-based and no-fault divorces. The grounds for fault-based divorce may include the following: 

  • Adultery
  • Extreme cruelty
  • Willful neglect

Along with that, no-fault divorces are also recognized. With that, both spouses can cite incompatibility or live separately for a specified period.

Are There Residency Requirements?

If you want to file a divorce, at least one spouse will need to be a resident of the state for at least six months. Additionally, all the necessary paperwork must be filed in the country where they reside. 

How Is the Property Division Handled?

When dividing marital property, the state follows the equitable distribution principles. Keep in mind that doesn’t always mean a 50/50 split. 

However, the property will be divided through a fair and just process. The courts will consider each spouse’s economic circumstances and contributions to the marriage during this step. 

Child Custody

Unfortunately, child custody cases can become some of the most contentious legal matters in the state. They are handled according to these requirements. 

What Are the Different Types of Custody?

Like most states, Ohio has two types of custody: legal and physical. With legal custody, one or both parents have the decision-making authority for their child. 

On the other hand, physical custody involves where the child will reside. In some cases, custody can be awarded to a sole basis (one parent) or both parents (shared custody).

How Are Decisions Made?

Ohio courts will always prioritize the child’s best interests. They will look at the child’s relationship with each parent, the child’s adjustment to school and home, and the parent’s ability to give a stable place to live. 

Child Support

Another important aspect of family law is child support. Here are more points to keep in mind. 

How Is Child Support Calculated?

Ohio will determine child support based on a couple of factors, such as:

  • Each parent’s income
  • Health and education expenses
  • Child care expenses

The courts want to ensure the child receives the appropriate financial support from both parents.

Can These Orders Be Modified?

If any parents have a major change in their income or the child’s needs change, they can petition the court to modify the child support. 

Spousal Support

Once known as alimony, the gender-neutral term spousal support is an option for both men and women in the state.

How Does the Court Determine Alimony?

Like child support, certain factors are taken into consideration for this support. The court may look at each person’s contributions to the marriage, their living standard, and the marriage’s length. 

Can These Orders Be Modified or Terminated?

Once again, if there is a substantial change in circumstances, such as changes in income or employment status, you may be able to request a modification or termination. 

Let Us Assist With your Family Law Issues

Hopefully, some of your questions have been answered with this family law in Ohio. However, if you need assistance with child custody, divorce, or spousal support, make sure to have a skilled family law attorney on your side. 

Contact the legal team at Axelrod Law Office in Lake County, OH. Call our office at (440) 271-8126 or submit a contact form to schedule a free, confidential legal consultation.