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Ohio Divorce Self-Help Center

GENERAL INFORMATION
- How does DivorceWriter work?
- How do I make changes to my documents after I receive them?
- I didn't list any property or debts in the online interview. Why do some of my documents ask the court to divide property and debts?
- I didn't list any property or debts in the online interview. Why do some of my documents ask the court to divide our property and/or debts?
- I need a form that is not available online or in the DivorceWriter's supplemental forms database. How can I find a sample form elsewhere?
- How does DivorceWriter work?
- How much does DivorceWriter cost?
- Are court filing fees included in the fee?
- Will DivorceWriter work in my state?
- What is included in my DivorceWriter package?
- What do I do after I receive my documents?
- Why is DivorceWriter the best?
- How long will it take to receive my documents?
- Can I make changes to my documents after I receive them?
- What is the online interview?
- I want to use DivorceWriter to prepare my own divorce documents. What do I do next?
- What happens after I receive my DivorceWriter documents?
- How do I change my password?
- How do I make changes to my existing DivorceWriter account?
- Why is DivorceWriter the best?
- Can I use DivorceWriter in my state?
- I finished the online interview. How long will it take to receive my documents?
- Are court filing fees included in the fee?
- How much does DivorceWriter cost?
- Are DivorceWriter documents legal?
- Will DivorceWriter documents work in my state and/or in my situation?
- What if I need additional documents that were not included in my DivorceWriter package?
- Will my documents be completed or will I have to fill them out myself when I receive them?
- Does DivorceWriter provide documents for annulments?
- How do I make changes to my documents after receiving my self-prepared DivorceWriter package?
- Can you overnight my documents to me so that I can have them right away?
- We were married in a foreign country. Can we divorce in the U.S.?
- Can I create another divorce in my account?
- Will my documents be completed or will I have to fill them out myself when I receive them?
- Do we need to notify the clerk if one or both spouses move to a different address during the divorce?
- Do we need to notify the court of any address changes during the divorce?
- Customer wants to know what they need to do if one spouse moves to a different address while the divorce is pending
- What is DivorceWriter's fax number?
- Does it matter which spouse files for divorce?
- Customer notifies us of rejection without requesting refund
- What's the difference between an Acknowledgement and a Jurat?
- What is included?
- How do I serve a spouse that lives in a different state or country?
DIVORCE FILING PROCEDURES
- What is the difference between a dissolution of marriage and a divorce?
- What are the basic steps to getting a dissolution of marriage in Ohio?
- How much is the filing fee in Ohio?
- What documents are included in the self-prepared Ohio DivorceWriter dissolution of marriage package?
- What are the residency requirements for filing?
- What documents are included in the self-prepared DivorceWriter Ohio divorce package?
- What are the signature requirements for the documents I will receive?
- How do we prove that we meet the Ohio residency requirements?
- Where do I file the dissolution/divorce documents?
- Will either of us be required to attend a court hearing?
- Do we have to be separated to have our marriage dissolved or to get a divorce?
- What is the difference between a dissolution and a divorce in Ohio?
- Can I change my name in the divorce proceedings?
- Where do we file the dissolution documents?
- How long will it take to finalize my dissolution/divorce?
- Do we have to live at separate addresses?
- What are the state residency requirements for filing for dissolution in Ohio?
- Which is the proper Ohio county for filing for dissolution?
- Can the wife change her name back during the divorce?
- Do I have to have my signature notarized on any documents?
- Do I have to divorce in the state where I was married?
- What if my spouse and I don't live in the same state?
- What documents will I receive?
- Do any documents require notarization?
- How do I determine if my income falls below the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Poverty Guidelines?
- My documents ask for the "Cause Number" instead of a "Case Number." Is this correct?
- The Clerk told me that Ohio has new domestic relations forms that I need to use. How do I get them?
- There was an error on one or more of the documents that I filed with the Clerk. Now that I have fixed the error(s) on the document(s), is there anything else I have to do to it before I file an amended version of the document with the Clerk?
- Can my spouse have documents notarized in a different state?
- Do I have to list the Social Security Number?
CUSTODY, VISITATION, AND SUPPORT
- How is child support calculated?
- What if my spouse and I have agreed to a child support amount that is different from the standard amount?
- What if we already have an existing/prior child support order?
- Will we be able to customize our documents to fit our specific custody and visitation arrangement?
- What are the different types of custody?
- When can a child support order be modified?
- What is the difference between child support and spousal support?
- We have agreed that one spouse will pay spousal support to the other. What are some options?
- Is child support required in Ohio?
- What if my spouse and I have agreed to use a child support amount that is different from the standard amount set by the Child Support Guidelines?
- Do I have to pay income tax on spousal support payments that I receive?
- Can we use DivorceWriter if we have children?
- We have children. Can I still use DivorceWriter?
- What if my spouse and I have a combined annual income of less than $6,600?
- What if my spouse and I have a combined annual income of more than $150,000?
- Can we specify how we will claim our child(ren) for income tax purposes?
- Why do I keep getting an error for holidays and special occasions?
- What if we each will have primary physical custody of at least one child?
- Is spousal support commonly awarded?
- We have received our documents, but have decided that we do not want any parenting time schedule. Is this possible?
- Where do I find a Child Custody Affidavit pursuant to R.C. 3127.23?
- Where can I find language pertaining to R.C. 3119.22 and 3119.23 in my documents?
- What if my children live in another state and we already have a court order or informal arrangement concerning child support and child custody?
- What is the home state of the children under UCCJEA?
DEBTS AND PROPERTY
- What options do we have for our real estate?
- We want to transfer real estate into only one spouse's name. Do we need a Quit Claim Deed?
- Will we have the option to divide one or more retirement plans?
- Can we divide one or more retirement plans?
- Can we divide/list as many items of personal property as we want?
- Can we divide as many items of personal property as we want?
- Can we divide/list as many debts as we want?
- Do I need to list the legal description of my real estate?
- Do DivorceWriter documents accommodate the splitting of one or more items/pieces or property between two spouses?
- Can I receive a portion of my spouse's retirement plan even though his/her retirement is several years away?
- We are each going to be liable for a percentage of one or more of our debts. How do we enter the information?
- Do we have to list the property we've agreed to divide?
- Do we have to list the items of property we've agreed to divide?
- Do we have to list the debts we've agreed to divide?
- Where is the Waiver of Equal Division and Waiver of Written Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law located in my documents?
- What if I don't know if I have debts to list?
- What if I don't know if I have property to list?
- What is the "legal description" of a piece of real estate?
- Why do my DivorceWriter documents say that we do not have life insurance or other property that we actually do have?
- Do we have to list the debts we have agreed to divide?
- What if I don't know if I have property to list?
- What if I don't know if I have debts to list?
SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES
- What if one spouse is in the military?
- What if one spouse is living in a foreign country?
- What if I have an out of state driver's license or no license at all?
- What if my spouse and I don't live in the state shown on this page?
- What if my spouse is in the military?
- I am not sure my marriage was legal. Do I even need a divorce?
- My spouse is currently incarcerated. What address do I use?
- My spouse is currently incarcerated. What address do I use?
- How do we get documents notarized in a foreign country?
- I can't find my spouse. Can I still use DivorceWriter?
- What if my spouse is unwilling to sign the divorce documents?
- I received my DivorceWriter package today, but I'm not sure I want to file for divorce right away. How how long are these papers good for?
- My spouse is currently incarcerated. Can we still use DivorceWriter?
- Does DivorceWriter provide gender-neutral documents for divorce in states where same-sex marriage is not specifically legalized, but is recognized when performed in another state?
- How do I end a civil union or domestic partnership?
- Which states allow same-sex divorce?
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES
- Where can I find additional help?
- Where can I find the full-text version of the Ohio divorce statutes online?
Ready to Begin now?
GENERAL INFORMATION
How does DivorceWriter work? First, complete the basic pre-purchase portion of the online interview. Then, set up your DivorceWriter account and enter your payment information. Complete the remainder of the online interview, which asks for additional information regarding your property, debts, children (if any), etc., and click on "submit."

Our automated system will transfer the information to forms specific to the state where the divorce will be filed. Get your DivorceWriter documents immediately using the instant download option. You may also have them printed and shipped to you via Priority Mail. All document packages include state-specific written procedures for signing and filing with the Court Clerk.
How do I make changes to my documents after I receive them? If you want to make changes to any of your documents after receiving them in the mail, you have three options:
  1. Log into your account. Make the desired changes to your online interview responses. Then, on the review page of the interview under "Printing and Shipping Status," click on "E-mail Me a Copy of My Divorce Documents."
  2. E-mail your documents to yourself. Then, customize as needed and print.
  3. In the alternative, if you would like to have a hard copy of your documents shipped to you, contact customer service at info@divorcewriter.com.
I didn't list any property or debts in the online interview. Why do some of my documents ask the court to divide property and debts? Asking the Court for to divide property and debts fairly is standard language in the Divorce Petitions/Divorce Complaints in a majority of states, even when the parties have no actual property or debts to divide.
I didn't list any property or debts in the online interview. Why do some of my documents ask the court to divide our property and/or debts? The Divorce Petitions/Divorce Complaints in most states contain language asking the Court to divide property and debts acquired during the marriage fairly or equitably. This type of equitable distribution request is standard language and is to be included even when the parties have no actual property or debts to divide.
I need a form that is not available online or in the DivorceWriter's supplemental forms database. How can I find a sample form elsewhere? Divorce documents are public record, so it is usually possible to obtain a copy of one or more document(s) from other divorce files to use as sample forms by making a request in person or by mail at the office where your divorce was filed. The case number for the divorce file(s) from which you would like a copy is/are generally required. If the request is made by mail, include a self-addressed stamped envelope with adequate postage.
How does DivorceWriter work?
  1. Complete the pre-buy portion of the online interview.
  2. After purchase you will have a chance to review your answers and provide any other details such as decisions regarding property and/or any minor children. When you are satisfied, submit your interview for printing.
  3. DivorceWriter will print and mail you your documents and filing instructions. You will be able to login and access your account at any time for up to a year to make any changes if needed.
How much does DivorceWriter cost? The DivorceWriter fee is just $149. (Note: This does not include the divorce filing fee charged by the Court Clerk in your county.)
Are court filing fees included in the fee? No. Court filing fees are not included in the DivorceWriter fee. The DivorceWriter fee includes all of your ready-to-sign divorce documents along with detailed filing instructions.
Will DivorceWriter work in my state? Each state has its own divorce forms, which tend to vary a lot in appearance and content. DivorceWriter forms are state-specific and designed for acceptance only in the state of filing selected by the customer.
What is included in my DivorceWriter package? Your package will contain all of the completed forms needed to get a divorce in your state, including step-by-step state-specific filing instructions.
What do I do after I receive my documents? Simply follow the step-by-step filing procedures included with your DivorceWriter documents, which include how and when to sign and file all documents as well as important practical procedural information to help you have a smooth, stress-free filing process.
Why is DivorceWriter the best?
Simple and fastDivorceWriters sophisticated easy to use web site allows you to create divorce documents quickly and easily.
Exceptional valueThe DivorceWriter package includes property agreement, parenting plan, name change, spousal support and more. Other online offerings charge twice as much for fewer features.
It is private and secureDivorceWriter.com is audited and tested daily by McAfee Secure, a leading online security company.
IntegrityPro Se Planning, Inc. has an "A+" rating with the Better Business Bureau. Our record is exemplary.
Customer serviceExceptional customer service
How long will it take to receive my documents? After completing the easy online interview and clicking the "submit" button, your DivorceWriter document package will be shipped to you the next business day via Priority Mail. Depending on your location, Priority Mail may take 3 to 4 business days for delivery.
Can I make changes to my documents after I receive them? Yes. We realize that your circumstances may change after you receive your DivorceWriter package. DivorceWriter offers easy options for making changes and obtaining new documents at NO ADDITIONAL CHARGE. Simply contact our Customer Service by telephone or e-mail.
What is the online interview? In as little as 10-15 minutes, the online interview allows you to enter the information needed to complete your divorce forms, all in the privacy of your own home. After completing the online interview, your documents are ready for printing with just one click.
I want to use DivorceWriter to prepare my own divorce documents. What do I do next? To get started, click on "Start the Process" above. You will be taken to our online interview where, in as little as 10-15 minutes, you can enter the information needed to complete your divorce forms. After completing the online interview, simply transfer your information to our automated system. Get your documents immediately using the instant download option or have them printed and shipped to you via Priority Mail.
What happens after I receive my DivorceWriter documents? Just follow the step-by-step instructions included with your DivorceWriter package, which provide detailed information on signing your documents as well as important practical tips to help you have a smooth, stress-free filing process.
How do I change my password? To change your password you must first log back into your account using the login section in the upper right hand corner of this page. Then on the Review page of your online interview, select the "EDIT" tab next to "Account Email." From here you can update your password.
How do I make changes to my existing DivorceWriter account? If you already have a DivorceWriter account and need to make changes to your online interview responses, you may log in to your account here.
Why is DivorceWriter the best? For just $149, DivorceWriter offers a quick and easy way to create your own divorce documents, ready-to-sign and file in your state. While other online offerings cost up to twice as much, our 100% money-back guarantee, HackerSafe™ monitoring, and "A+" rating with the Better Business Bureau make DivorceWriter a safe choice and a great value.
Can I use DivorceWriter in my state? DivorceWriter offers divorce documents for nearly every U.S. state and the District of Columbia. To see if your state is offered, go to the "Start the Process" page and select your state from the drop down box. DivorceWriter documents are state-specific. If your documents are not accepted in your county (or parish), you get your money back--100% guarantee.
I finished the online interview. How long will it take to receive my documents? Get your DivorceWriter documents immediately using the instant download option. You may also have them printed and shipped to you via Priority Mail, which typically takes 3-4 business days.
Are court filing fees included in the fee? The DivorceWriter price does NOT include the filing fee charged by the court clerk when you file for divorce. Fees can vary from state to state and county to county, but typically range from $100 to $350. A handful of counties charge $400.00 to $500.00.
How much does DivorceWriter cost? For only $149, you will receive all of the documents needed to get a divorce in your state. Step-by-step filing instructions for your state are also included at no additional charge.
Are DivorceWriter documents legal? DivorceWriter's goal is to provide self-help divorce documents. However, DivorceWriter is not a law firm and only lawyers are allowed to issue an opinion regarding the legality of a document and its applicability to your specific circumstances. If you have any doubts as to the applicability of your DivorceWriter purchase to your situation, you may wish to seek the advice of a lawyer licensed to practice law in your jurisdiction.

DivorceWriter offers a full refund if your documents are not accepted by the Court.
Will DivorceWriter documents work in my state and/or in my situation? DivorceWriter's goal is to provide self-help divorce documents. However, DivorceWriter is not a law firm and only lawyers are allowed to issue an opinion regarding the legality of a document and its applicability to your specific circumstances. If you have any doubts as to the applicability of your DivorceWriter purchase to your situation, you may wish to seek the advice of a lawyer licensed to practice law in your jurisdiction. DivorceWriter offers a full refund if your documents are not accepted by the Court.
What if I need additional documents that were not included in my DivorceWriter package? Contact customer service at info@divorcewriter.com with the name or form number of the the document(s) you need. We have many supplemental documents available that can be emailed to you for immediate printing.
Will my documents be completed or will I have to fill them out myself when I receive them? For the most part, your DivorceWriter documents arrive completed with the information that you provide in the interview, ready to sign and file with your local court. However, there is some information that is not yet known to the customer, such as the date that a filing step was completed, which must be filled in by the customer later in the process.

DivorceWriter makes every effort to balance the customer's need to have completed documents with the need to keep our online interview to a reasonable length for the comfort of our customers. As such, certain other pieces of information may also need to be filled in by the customer. Customers with minor children will need to fill in personal information pertaining to the children such as where and with whom they have lived over the last five years. Additionally, Ohio requires persons filing for divorce to complete affidavits pertaining to income, expenses, and property. Much of the information on these forms must be filled in by the customer as well.
Does DivorceWriter provide documents for annulments? No. DivorceWriter does not currently provide documents for annulments.
How do I make changes to my documents after receiving my self-prepared DivorceWriter package? If you want to make changes to any of your documents after receiving them in the mail, you have two options:
  1. Log into your account at www.divorcewriter.com/Home_Login.asp. Make the desired changes to your online interview responses. Then, on the review page of the interview under "Printing and Shipping Status," click on "E-mail Me a Copy of My Divorce Documents" to e-mail your documents to yourself. Customize as needed and print; or
  2. In the alternative, if you would like to have a hard copy of your documents shipped to you, contact customer service at info@divorcewriter.com.
Can you overnight my documents to me so that I can have them right away? Get your DivorceWriter documents immediately using the instant download option. You may also have them printed and shipped to you via Priority Mail.
We were married in a foreign country. Can we divorce in the U.S.? As long as you meet the residency requirements for filing for divorce in the state where you want to file, it should not matter that you were married outside of the U.S.
Can I create another divorce in my account? Yes, you can purchase additional divorces from your Account Summary page. Login to your account and select "Purchase New Divorce." Please note that each DivorceWriter divorce is for one marriage only. You may not reuse a purchased divorce to complete forms for another unrelated marriage.
Will my documents be completed or will I have to fill them out myself when I receive them? For the most part, your DivorceWriter documents arrive completed with the information that you provide in the interview, ready to sign and file with your local court. However, there is some information that is not yet known to the customer, such as the date that a filing step was completed, which must be filled in by the customer later in the process.

DivorceWriter makes every effort to balance the customer's need to have completed documents with the need to keep our online interview to a reasonable length for the comfort of our customers. As such, certain other pieces of information may also need to be filled in by the customer. Customers with minor children will need to fill in personal information pertaining to the children such as where and with whom they have lived over the last five years. Additionally, most states require persons filing for divorce to complete affidavits or financial statements pertaining to income, expenses, and property. Much of the information on these forms must be filled in by the customer as well.
Do we need to notify the clerk if one or both spouses move to a different address during the divorce? Any questions concerning the requirements for notifying the court about changes of address during the divorce process should be directed to the office where the divorce was filed. At the very least, they will likely want to make a note of the new address for their records. Any documents that have yet to be filed that contain the outdated address may be downloaded in Microsoft Word and customized as needed.
Do we need to notify the court of any address changes during the divorce? Any questions concerning the requirements for notifying the court about changes of address during the divorce process are best directed to the office where the divorce was filed as they will likely want to make note of the new address for their records. If you find you need to make any changes to your documents, they may be downloaded in Microsoft Word and self-customized to meet your needs.
Customer wants to know what they need to do if one spouse moves to a different address while the divorce is pending Thank you for your inquiry. Any questions concerning the requirements for notifying the court about changes of address during the divorce process are best directed to the office where the divorce was filed as they will likely want to make note of the new address for their records. If you find you need to make any changes to your documents, they may be downloaded in Microsoft Word and self-customized to meet your needs.
What is DivorceWriter's fax number? DivorceWriter's fax number is (800) 344 9889.
Does it matter which spouse files for divorce? Generally speaking, both spouses should have the same rights in a divorce proceeding regardless of which one actually files for divorce. That being said, keep in mind that, depending on the state, the spouse who files may be responsible for one or more of the following tasks: (1) filing of the actual divorce paperwork at the court clerk's office, (2) paying the required filing fee, (3) fulfilling any requirements for serving the other spouse, (4) being the contact person for any future interactions with the court clerk and (5) attending the divorce hearing, if required in your state. Please note that the filing procedures you will receive with your DivorceWriter package will provide step-by-step information on the divorce process, and depending on your state, not all of these obligations will be required of the Petitioner/Plaintiff.

Note: DivorceWriter is not a law firm, and because we are not lawyers, the laws governing self-help legal products prohibit us from providing any assistance to customers in determining which spouse should file for divorce.
Customer notifies us of rejection without requesting refund Duplicate - Needs to be deleted; wrong response for this situation was given here
What's the difference between an Acknowledgement and a Jurat? With an Acknowledgement, the notary is certifying that the signer appeared before the notary with identification, usually a valid driver's license or other picture ID, and acknowledged that he or she is the person who signed the document. With a Jurat, the notary also confirms the identity of the person signing, but also requires that person to swear under oath or affirmation as to the truth of the statements contained in the document.

An Acknowledgement may be signed outside the presence of the notary, if desired, and may be signed by an authorized representative, if necessary. However, a jurat must be signed in front of the notary and can only be signed by the person named in the document.

Examples of typical jurat wording:
  • "I, (signer's name), first duly sworn..."
  • "I do so agree and covenant..."
  • "I affirm or testify that..."
What is included? The DivorceWriter package includes all forms needed to complete your divorce. These state specific forms cover property, debt, spousal support, child support, parenting plan, changing your name, and more. Receive your forms instantly online, or receive by mail. Make unlimited changes as needed. (Note: The DivorceWriter fee does not include the filing fee charged by the Court Clerk in your county.)
How do I serve a spouse that lives in a different state or country? The process for serving a spouse that lives in another state or country depends on the state where the divorce is going to be filed. In states that require formal in-person service by a Sheriff or private process server, the filing spouse will need to make arrangements for service by the Sheriff in the county where the non-filing spouse lives or by a private process server in that state. However, in many states, formal service by a Sheriff or process server is not required when your spouse is willing to sign the necessary documents. Your DivorceWriter procedures will specify which type of service is required in your state.

Note: A few states require in-person service, but allow it to be made by a friend or other "helper" selected by the filing spouse as long as that person is a competent adult living in the filing state. In those states, service on a spouse living in a different state or foreign country must be made by a Sheriff or private process server as described above.
Ready to Begin now?
DIVORCE FILING PROCEDURES
What is the difference between a dissolution of marriage and a divorce? DivorceWriter provides Ohio customers with dissolution documents.

While some states use the terms "dissolution" and "divorce" interchangeably, Ohio is unique in that it makes an important distinction between the two. A dissolution is essentially a no-fault, simplied version of a divorce in Ohio.

In Ohio, when the matter is truly uncontested--i.e. both spouses have reached an agreement on all matters involving ending their marriage a--spouses may seek a dissolution rather than a divorce. A dissolution ends the marriage just as a divorce does, but requires fewer documents than a divorce and generally only one court hearing.

In a dissolution, both parties are designated as Co-Petitioners and both must attend the hearing together.

When contacting the Clerk’s office or making any other inquiries regarding a case, using "dissolution" and "divorce" interchangeably could confuse the Clerk's office.
What are the basic steps to getting a dissolution of marriage in Ohio? 1) Both spouses review and sign the dissolution documents.
2) The Petitioner files the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and related documents with the Common Pleas Court Clerk and pays the filing fee of approximately $175.00-$300.00.
3) Both spouses attend the final hearing approximately 30-90 days after the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage is filed.
4) The Judge signs the Decree of Dissolution following the final hearing and/or mails a finalized Decree to you and your spouse.
How much is the filing fee in Ohio? The filing fee charged by the Court is NOT included in the DivorceWriter price. The fee for filing for dissolution or divorce in Ohio is typically $175.00-$350.00.
What documents are included in the self-prepared Ohio DivorceWriter dissolution of marriage package? In addition to Ohio filing procedures, your self-prepared Ohio DivorceWriter package will include:
  • Petition for Dissolution of Marriage
  • Separation Agreement
  • Waiver of Financial Disclosure
  • Waiver of Legal Representation
  • Waiver of Service of Summons
  • Decree of Dissolution of Marriage
Customers with minor or legally dependent children from the marriage will also receive:
  • Custody Affidavit
  • Child Support Worksheet
  • Application for Child Support Services Non-Public Assistance Applicant
Customers who wish to share legal custody of their minor and/or legally dependent child(ren) will also receive:
  • Shared Parenting Plan
  • Final Decree of Shared Parenting
Hamilton County customers with minor or legally dependent children will also receive:
  • Qualified Medical Child Support Order
  • Health Care Verification
Franklin County customers with minor or legally dependent children will also receive:
  • Health Insurance Disclosure Affidavit
  • Financial Disclosure Affidavit (instead of Waiver)
What are the residency requirements for filing? Ohio requires at least one of the spouses in an action for dissolution of marriage or divorce to have been a resident of Ohio for at least six months and a resident of the county of filing for at least 90 days immediately before filing for dissolution or divorce.
What documents are included in the self-prepared DivorceWriter Ohio divorce package? In addition to Ohio filing procedures, your self-prepared Ohio DivorceWriter package will include:
  • Complaint for Divorce
  • Answer
  • Separation Agreement
  • Financial Disclosure Affidavit
  • Waiver of Legal Representation
  • Waiver of Service of Summons
  • Decree of Divorce
Customers with minor or legally dependent children from the marriage will also receive:
  • Child Custody Affidavit
  • Child Support Worksheet
  • Application for Child Support Services Non-Public Assistance
Customers who wish to share legal custody of their minor and/or legally dependent child(ren) will also receive:
  • Shared Parenting Plan
  • Final Decree of Shared Parenting
Franklin County customers will also receive:
  • Health Insurance Disclosure Affidavit
Hamilton County customers will also receive:
  • Qualified Medical Child Support Order
  • Health Care Verification
What are the signature requirements for the documents I will receive? The state-specific filing procedures included in the DivorceWriter package indicate which documents need to be signed and which documents, if any, require notarization. Some documents will require the signatures of both spouses. When notarization is required, a separate notary block is provided for each spouse, so that it is not necessary for notarization to occur at the same time or place.
How do we prove that we meet the Ohio residency requirements? Whether you are filing for dissolution or divorce, be aware that both require the party that files, and sometimes the non-filing spouse as well, to sign a document containing language that states that at least one of the spouses meets the residency requirements. In many most, this is all that is required to prove residency.

If you have any additional questions regarding whether your county will require you to present any identification or documentation to prove residency at the time of filing, you should direct your inquiries to the Court of Common Pleas Clerk for the county of filing. The Clerk cannot give legal advice, but will be able to provide you with general information regarding filing in your county. DivorceWriter cannot assist you in deciding which spouse should file.
Where do I file the dissolution/divorce documents? Both dissolutions and divorces are filed at the Court of Common Pleas Clerk's office in the county of filing. Depending on the county, it may be more specifically referred to as the Division of Domestic Relations for the Court of Common Pleas.
Will either of us be required to attend a court hearing? To obtain a dissolution of marriage, both spouses must attend the hearing together. To obtain a divorce, only the spouse that files (Plaintiff) is required to attend the hearing.
Do we have to be separated to have our marriage dissolved or to get a divorce? Many Ohio courts will not grant a dissolution of marriage or divorce unless the spouses have been living separate and apart at different addresses from the time they sign their separation agreement or at least since they filed it with the court. This is to ensure that both people have experienced living separate and apart prior to affirming their agreement. It also makes sure that both parties have divided their household goods to their satisfaction.

After the dissolution or divorce has been finalized, spouses are free to live wherever they choose.
What is the difference between a dissolution and a divorce in Ohio? In Ohio, a dissolution of marriage is sometimes referred to as "no-fault divorce" because it does not require the parties to prove any grounds for ending the marriage. As long as the parties are able to agree on all matters involving the division of debts and property as well as regarding the support and custody of children, if any, and if both parties are able to attend the court hearing together, they may seek a dissolution of marriage rather than a divorce.

If both parties are not able to attend a court hearing together, a dissolution is not an option and a divorce is the only way to end the marriage. There are several grounds for divorce in Ohio, but the most common is that the parties are able to agree that they are incompatible. If you and your spouse wish to use a grounds other than incompatibility, you may not be able to use DivorceWriter.
Can I change my name in the divorce proceedings? If you select the name change option on the online interview, the request will be automatically added to your documents at no additional cost to you.
Where do we file the dissolution documents? All Ohio divorces are filed with the Clerk of the Court of Common Pleas for the county of filing.

Depending on the county, it may be more specifically referred to as the Division of Domestic Relations for the Court of Common Pleas.
How long will it take to finalize my dissolution/divorce? Generally, it will take between 31-89 days to complete your dissolution of marriage in Ohio.

While there is no set waiting period with Ohio dissolutions, the mandatory dissolution hearing cannot take place sooner than 30 days prior to the date the Petition for Dissolution is filed, and cannot take place more than 90 days after the date of filing. Since a dissolution is generally finalized by the judge at the hearing, 31-89 days is the range for completing the dissolution.

Additional information can be found at: http://codes.ohio.gov

Like a dissolution, a divorce is usually finalized at the divorce hearing. In many counties, you will be able to schedule your final hearing while you are at the Clerk's office filing your documents. In other counties, you will be notified of a hearing date later. Regardless, a divorce in Ohio is generally finalized within one to three months from the date it was filed.
Do we have to live at separate addresses? Many Ohio courts will not grant a dissolution of marriage unless the spouses have been living separate and apart at different addresses from the time they sign their separation agreement or at least since they filed it with the court. Other Ohio counties require that the spouses must live separate and apart for at least thirty (30) days prior to the divorce hearing date. This is to ensure that both people have experienced living separate and apart prior to affirming their agreement. It also makes sure that both parties have divided their household goods to their satisfaction.

After the dissolution has been finalized, spouses are free to live wherever they choose.
What are the state residency requirements for filing for dissolution in Ohio? At least one of the spouses must be a resident of the State of Ohio for at least six months immediately prior to the filing the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage.

Note that this is as opposed to a divorce, which requires that the person filing be a resident of Ohio for at least six months before filing.

Additional information on the residency requirement can be found here.
Which is the proper Ohio county for filing for dissolution? An Ohio dissolution of marriage can be filed in the county where either of the spouses resides.

However, to file for divorce in Ohio, the person filing must be a resident of the county of filing for at least 90 days prior to filing.
Can the wife change her name back during the divorce? Yes, the wife may restore her name to the name she had before the marriage took place. If a name change is desired, the necessary information will be requested in the Additional Details portion of the DivorceWriter online interview at no additional charge.
Do I have to have my signature notarized on any documents? The state-specific filing instructions you will receive with your DivorceWriter package indicate when and where to sign documents and which documents, if any, require notarization. If notarization is ever required, a separate notary block is provided for each spouse, so that it is not necessary for notarization to occur at the same time or place.
Do I have to divorce in the state where I was married? No. You can divorce in any state where you or your spouse meet the divorce residency requirements.
What if my spouse and I don't live in the same state? As long as one spouse meets the residency requirements for the state where the divorce will be filed, it does not matter that the other spouse lives in a different state.
What documents will I receive? Each DivorceWriter package includes all of the documents needed to obtain a divorce in your state, ready to sign and file. You will also receive easy to understand, step-by-step instructions for filing for divorce in your state.
Do any documents require notarization? The filing instructions included with your DivorceWriter package will provide additional information if any documents require notarization.
How do I determine if my income falls below the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Poverty Guidelines? Some states require a person who is applying for a filing fee waiver to have an annual income that falls at least 125% below the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Povery Guidelines in order to qualify for the waiver. Information on the HHS Poverty Guidelines for the current year is available here.
My documents ask for the "Cause Number" instead of a "Case Number." Is this correct? Yes. In a number of U.S. states, the Courts use the term "Cause Number" instead of "Case Number."
The Clerk told me that Ohio has new domestic relations forms that I need to use. How do I get them? On July 1, 2010, the Ohio Supreme Court enacted the following new Uniform Domestic Relations Forms for use in all 88 Ohio counties:
  • Affidavit of Income and Expenses
  • Affidavit of Property
  • Parenting Proceeding Affidavit (cases involving children only)
  • Health Insurance Affidavit (cases involving children only)
  • Affidavit for Temporary Orders (only if you need the Court to issue an Order concerning custody, visitation, and/or requiring your spouse to pay support and/or certain expenses while the divorce is pending; rarely used in dissolution cases; optional in divorce cases)
Although most counties will continue to accept the existing forms, all Ohio Courts are required to accept the new Uniform Domestic Relations Forms in all dissolution and divorce cases filed after July 1, 2010. Any DivorceWriter customer that needs one or more of the new forms may send a request to our Customer Service at info@divorcewriter.com and we will e-mail those documents to you at no additional charge.
There was an error on one or more of the documents that I filed with the Clerk. Now that I have fixed the error(s) on the document(s), is there anything else I have to do to it before I file an amended version of the document with the Clerk? Generally, if an error has been made in a document that was filed with the Clerk, the corrected document needs to be retitled as "Amended" before it can be refiled. For example, if there was an error in the divorce Petition/Complaint that was filed with the Clerk, before filing a corrected divorce Petition/Complaint or Settlement Agreement, the document should be retitled with the word "Amended" at the beginning of the title (ex. Amended Petition for Divorce, Amended Settlement Agreement). Most DivorceWriter documents are available in Word format allowing you to add "Amended" to the title yourself.

Note: When amending one document, be sure to review all documents to make sure that the changes being made to that document do not cause inconsistencies in other documents. If so, it may be necessary to either file amended versions of previously filed documents as well or make changes before filing documents that have not yet been filed.

When you file the amended version of the document, you need to bring the same number of copies of the amended document to the Clerk's office as you brought when you filed the original document. Additionally, you must follow the same steps, if any, for service of that particular document on your spouse as you were required to do for the original version you filed.
Can my spouse have documents notarized in a different state? Yes. If your spouse is unable to have documents notarized by a Notary Public in the state where the divorce will be or has been filed, he or she may have them notarized by a Notary Public in another state.
Do I have to list the Social Security Number? If you do not enter a Social Security Number here, there will be blanks on any form requiring the number where you can enter it by hand.
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CUSTODY, VISITATION, AND SUPPORT
How is child support calculated? Based on the information provided by the customer when completing the online interview, a computer generated Child Support Worksheet is automatically created and sent to the customer as part of the DivorceWriter package.

Additional information on the calculation of child support can be found here.
What if my spouse and I have agreed to a child support amount that is different from the standard amount? DivorceWriter shows you the child support calculation under the guidelines using the parents' income. Then, the customer chooses whether to use the guideline calculation or to deviate from that calculation by entering a different child support amount as well a reason for using a different amount. Additional information on using a child support amount that is different from the standard amount set by the Child Support Guidelines is available here.
What if we already have an existing/prior child support order? Customers who already have a child support order issued by a Court have the option to enter that information in this portion of the interview. In order to list a prior support order, the customer can do the following:
  • Select “no” to using the payment calculation;
  • Enter the existing support amount in the space provided for monthly payment amount; and
  • Enter the following as the reason for deviating from the state calculation: There is a prior child support order under Case No. (enter case number) that was issued by (enter court name) on (enter date of order).
Note that the information will be transferred to the applicable documents exactly as it is entered by the customer. Generally, you will also be expected to staple one copy of the prior child support order to each copy of the Settlement Agreement (sometimes called a Separation Agreement) that you will file with the Court later in the divorce process.
Will we be able to customize our documents to fit our specific custody and visitation arrangement? DivorceWriter accommodates parents who want to share joint legal custody while designating one parent to have primary physical custody of the children.

Choose to customize as little or as much as you need.
  • Customize your own schedule for weekend and weekday vistiation, if any, including setting start and end times.
  • Create a detailed schedule for vacations, holidays, and special occasions, or choose to keep your regular schedule during those times.
  • Decide which parent will have the final say if there are disagreements about major decisions including education, non-emergency health care, and religious upbringing, and create additional decision-making rights if needed.
  • Choose for one parent to claim the child(ren) annually or alternate the right to claim the minor child(ren).
What are the different types of custody? In Ohio, joint legal custody is commonly referred to as shared parenting. Shared parenting allocates parental rights and responsibilities for the care of the child(ren) to both parents through a Shared Parenting Plan that sets forth how the parents will share all or some of the aspects of the physical and legal care of the child(ren). In a shared parenting arrangement, both parents are designated the legal custodians and residential parents of the child(ren), although it is NOT required that the physical parenting, sometimes referred to as physical or residential custody, be 50/50.

If shared parenting is not selected, you can choose for one parent to be the legal custodian and residential parent of the child(ren) with a customized visitation schedule, if desired, for the non-residential parent.

Additional information on allocating parental rights and responsibilities is available at Ohio Revised Code 3109.04 and Ohio Revised Code 3105.63(A)(1).
When can a child support order be modified? Either parent can ask the court to modify an existing child support order. Information on child support modification is available at Ohio Revised Code 3119.79.
What is the difference between child support and spousal support? Spousal support is paid to one spouse by the other for the support and care of the receiving spouse. Child support, on the other hand, is paid to one parent by the other for the support and care of dependent children
We have agreed that one spouse will pay spousal support to the other. What are some options? Two common ways for one spouse to receive spousal support payments from the other are (1) monthly payments for a set duration or (2) a one-time lump sum payment.
Is child support required in Ohio? Yes. Even when parents agree to very little or no child support, courts may reject the terms because parents have a duty to support their children both before and after a divorce.

Additional information on minimum child support obligations is available here.
What if my spouse and I have agreed to use a child support amount that is different from the standard amount set by the Child Support Guidelines? Information on using a child support amount that is different from the standard amount set by the Child Support Guidelines is available at: http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/3119.22 and http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/3119.23
Do I have to pay income tax on spousal support payments that I receive? For federal income tax purposes, spousal support is commonly considered taxable income for the receiving spouse and is also tax-deductible for the spouse that pays it. However, when a written provision is included in a settlement agreement stating that the payments are not included in the gross income of the recipient spouse nor deductible from the income of the payor spouse, you are often able to avoid any federal income tax consequences for either party.

If you have any questions regarding the tax consequences of spousal support, you may wish to contact an attorney. More information is also available at: www.irs.com

Child support is NEVER taxable income to the parent that receives it nor is it ever tax-deductible for the party that pays it.
Can we use DivorceWriter if we have children? Even couples with minor children can prepare their own documents using DivorceWriter.
We have children. Can I still use DivorceWriter? Yes, you can use DivorceWriter to create your divorce forms even if you have children. The online interview includes tools for creating a Parenting Plan and requesting child support if needed.
What if my spouse and I have a combined annual income of less than $6,600? The Ohio Child Support Guidelines Schedule is designed to calculate child support when the combined gross income of both parents is more than $6,600 per year. If the combined gross income of both parents is less than that amount, the court shall determine the amount of the obligor's child support obligation on a case-by-case basis using the schedule as a guideline. Generally, a Child Support Worksheet will not be filed and the support calculation will be set at the hearing.

For additional information, see Ohio Revised Code 3119.021 and Ohio Revised Code 3119.04.
What if my spouse and I have a combined annual income of more than $150,000? The Ohio Child Support Guidelines Schedule is designed to calculate child support when the combined gross income of both parents is less than $150,000 per year. If the combined gross income of both parents is more than that amount, the court shall determine the amount of the obligor's child support obligation on a case-by-case basis using the schedule as a guideline.

For additional information, see Ohio Revised Code 3119.021 and Ohio Revised Code 3119.04.
Can we specify how we will claim our child(ren) for income tax purposes? The DivorceWriter online interview allows you to designate which spouse will claim your minor children as dependents for purposes of federal and state income tax.
Why do I keep getting an error for holidays and special occasions? For each holiday you must mark "Wife" or "Husband." In addition you must also mark "Even," "Odd" or "Every" to specify which years the selected parent will spend with the child(ren) for each individual holiday.

Examples:
  • Christmas Day: If you select "Wife" and "Even" then the child(ren) will spend Christmas Day with the wife on the even numbered years.
  • Father's Day: If you select "Husband" and "Every" then the child(ren) will spend every Father's Day with the husband.
What if we each will have primary physical custody of at least one child? DivorceWriter can accommodate split custody situations by allowing customers to select joint legal and physical custody. Then, in the box(es) provided, the customer indicates with which child(ren) the mother will have more actual parenting time and with which child(ren) the one father with have more actual parenting time. If you need further customization, DivorceWriter will provide you with a copy of your settlement agreement and/or parenting plan in Word format so that you can edit those documents further to meet the needs of your situation.

If necessary, you can also deviate to a child support amount that is different from the guideline amount. More information on child support is available in the Help Topics located in the child support portion of this online interview.
Is spousal support commonly awarded? Less than 10% of DivorceWriter customers choose to include spousal support in their divorces.
We have received our documents, but have decided that we do not want any parenting time schedule. Is this possible? The DivorceWriter online interview, which you completed previously, was designed to accommodate the most common parenting time (visitation) arrangements. If, after reviewing those document(s) in your DivorceWriter package that contain parenting time information, you determine that you want to add and/or delete any items, you may download the applicable document(s) in Microsoft Word and make the desired changes. Then, simply save and print your revised document(s) yourself. Note: In some states, information on parenting time is listed in the Settlement Agreement. In other states, this information is included in a separate Parenting Plan. In a few states, parenting time information may be included in both a Settlement Agreement and Parenting Plan as well as possibly in the Decree. If your state has more than one document, which contains parenting time information, be sure to make the changes in each applicable document as the information must be consistent.

DivorceWriter customer service cannot assist you in customizing your documents. If you have any legal questions on customizing your divorce papers, you may need to contact a lawyer licensed to practice law in the applicable jurisdiction.
Where do I find a Child Custody Affidavit pursuant to R.C. 3127.23? In 2010, the Ohio Supreme Court enacted uniform domestic relations forms. One such form is the Parenting Proceeding Affidavit, which is a uniform Child Custody Affidavit that is now acceptable for use in all 88 Ohio counties to satisfy the requirements of R.C. 3127.23.
Where can I find language pertaining to R.C. 3119.22 and 3119.23 in my documents? The Separation Agreement is a document that must be signed by both spouses. Article Four of the Separation Agreement contains provisions concerning child support including:
  1. The deviated amount of child support that the parties have agreed upon;
  2. The amount of child support that the obligor parent would have been obligated to pay under the standard child support guidelines;
  3. A statement of the cash medical support amount; and
  4. A paragraph explaining that the parties have agreed and the court so finds that the guideline amount is unjust or inappropriate and not in the best interest of the child. The information explaining the reason for the deviation provided by the customer in the DivorceWriter online interview is automatically transferred to that portion of the child support paragraph.
An extensive list of reasons that the court may consider in allowing a deviation in child support, including extended parenting time (shared parenting) with the parent paying support, are listed in R.C. 3119.23 as well as in the DivorceWriter online interview. To view R.C. 3119.23, click here. DivorceWriter cannot assist you in determining reasons for the deviation.
What if my children live in another state and we already have a court order or informal arrangement concerning child support and child custody? If you want to have the court issue an order as part of the divorce concerning child support, child custody and parenting time, it usually can't be done in a state other than the state where the children live. However, if you and your spouse already have a court order in another state concerning child support, child custody and/or parenting time, or if you have an informal agreement on those matters and are not concerned about resolving those issues through the divorce, it may not be a problem.

If you wish to proceed with a divorce in a state different than where the children are located, you may wish to log back in to your DivorceWriter account and select "no minor children" on the first page of the online interview. This will result in you receiving documents for a divorce without children. Then, carefully review all documents and revise the portions that state there are no minor children to instead list the names, dates of birth, and current physical address of each child as well as the length of time the child(ren) have been at that address. The terms of any existing court orders concerning the children should be explained in the same sections where the information on the children is listed and a copy of the order should be attached to the divorce petition when it is filed. If there is no court order, but the parents have an informal agreement on these matters, that information may be listed in this section.

DivorceWriter documents may be downloaded in Microsoft Word and self-customized as needed. DivorceWriter cannot assist you with document customization.
What is the home state of the children under UCCJEA? While you are entitled to file for divorce in any state where the residency requirements and grounds are met, filing for divorce in a different state than where the minor children reside can cause complications because the court lacks jurisdiction to set child custody and parenting time under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, or UCCJEA. In other words, if you want to have the court issue an order as part of the divorce concerning custody and parenting time, it usually can't be done in a state other than the state where the children live. However, if you and your spouse already have a court order in another state concerning custody and parenting time, or if you have an informal agreement on those matters and are not concerned about resolving those issues through the divorce, it may not be a problem.

The UCCJEA is federal legislation adopted in all states except Massachusettes that vests exclusive and continuing jurisdiction to set child custody with the courts in the 'home state' of the child. The 'home state' is the state where the child has lived for six (6) consecutive months (or since birth for children younger than six months) before the divorce is filed. If the child has not lived in any state for at least six months when the divorce is filed, then a jurisdiction that has had both 'significant connections' with the child and at least one parent, and where there is also 'substantial evidence concerning the child's care, protection, training, and personal relationships,' may assume child custody jurisdiction. If more than one state meets the 'significant connections' and 'substantial evidence' requirement under UCCJEA, the courts of those states must communicate and determine which state has the most significant connections to the child.

Because of the UCCJEA, it is generally easier to file for divorce in the state where the child(ren) have lived for at least six months, or in the alternative, in the state where the children currently live and the 'significant connections' and 'substantial evidence' requirements set forth above can be met. Note that when the minor children reside in a foreign country, the matter of child custody jurisdiction can be complicated further. You may wish to contact an attorney for additional information.

In the alternative, if you wish to proceed with a divorce in a state different than where the children are located, it may be easier to log back in to your DivorceWriter account and select "no minor children" on the first page of the online interview. This will result in you receiving documents for a divorce without children. Then, carefully review all documents and revise the portions that state there are no minor children to instead list the names, dates of birth, and current physical address of each child as well as the length of time the child(ren) have been at that address. The terms of any existing court orders concerning the children should be explained in the same sections where the information on the children is listed and a copy of the order should be attached to the divorce petition when it is filed.
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DEBTS AND PROPERTY
What options do we have for our real estate? The DivorceWriter provides an array of options for disposing of your real estate, including:
  • Designating responsibility for any mortgage(s) and other liabilities related to the property;
  • Buying-out your spouse with a cash settlement;
  • Designating one spouse to be responsible for the sale or share the responsibility equally;
  • Assigning a set number of months to complete the sale of property;
  • Listing one spouse as the receipient of the proceeds of the sale or assign a set percentage of proceeds, if any, to each spouse;
  • Designating one spouse to pay the monthly mortgage, taxes, and repairs pending sale or share the responsibility for these expenses equally.
We want to transfer real estate into only one spouse's name. Do we need a Quit Claim Deed? Generally, if you want to transfer jointly held real estate into the name of only one spouse, or if one spouse has real estate that is being transferred into the name of the other spouse, you will need to execute a Quit Claim Deed. Then, the Quit Claim Deed is filed, or recorded, with the County Clerk (Parish Clerk) or Register of Deeds.

DivorceWriter cannot provide Quit Claim Deeds. If you have any questions about real estate transfers or about Quit Claim Deeds, you may need to contact an attorney.
Will we have the option to divide one or more retirement plans? The DivorceWriter online interview allows spouses who have agreed to split one or more retirement plans to indicate the exact percentage that each spouse will receive of the retirement plan.

DivorceWriter cannot provide legal advice and cannot provide you with a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO). Contact an attorney and/or the retirement plan administrator for assistance in drafting a QDRO.
Can we divide one or more retirement plans? The DivorceWriter online interview allows spouses who have agreed to split one or more retirement plans to indicate the exact percentage that each spouse will receive of the retirement plan.

DivorceWriter cannot provide legal advice and cannot provide you with a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO). Contact an attorney and/or the retirement plan administrator for assistance in drafting a QDRO.
Can we divide/list as many items of personal property as we want? Choose to list all, some, or no property. The customer decides which property, if any, to list, although some courts require that at least real estate, vehicles, retirement accounts, property with titles, and/or other valuable property be listed. Spouses who have agreed to split one or more pieces of personal property can make a new entry for each spouse for each item to be divided, and then indicate the exact percentage that each spouse will receive.
Can we divide as many items of personal property as we want? Choose to list all, some, or no property. The customer decides which property, if any, to list, although some courts require that at least real estate, vehicles, retirement accounts, property with titles, and/or other valuable property be listed.
Can we divide/list as many debts as we want? Choose to list all, some, or no debts. The customer decides which debts, if any, to list, although some courts require debts related to real estate, vehicles, property with titles, and/or other valuable property to be listed as well as joint debts.
Do I need to list the legal description of my real estate? It is generally sufficient to just list the physical address of the property (street, city, state, zip), but some Courts also require legal description, which can be found on the deed and/or mortgage documents. If you are not sure, you may wish to provide the legal description as well.

As an example, you may enter your physical street address and then the legal description in the text box next to "Address and description of property as it appears on deed" in the following format: 123 Apple Lane, Anytown, NY 88888; Legal Description: [Enter the complete legal description exactly as it appears on your deed and/or mortgage documents].
Do DivorceWriter documents accommodate the splitting of one or more items/pieces or property between two spouses? The DivorceWriter online interview allows spouses who have agreed to split one or more items/pieces of property to make a new property entry for each spouse for each item to be divided, and then indicate the exact percentage that each spouse will receive.

DivorceWriter cannot provide legal advice. Contact an attorney regarding potential tax consequences of transferring property.
Can I receive a portion of my spouse's retirement plan even though his/her retirement is several years away? The most common way for one spouse to secure the right to a portion of the other spouse's retirement plan upon his/her retirement is through a Qualified Domestic Relations Order, or QDRO. To obtain a QDRO, contact your spouse's human resources or personnel office who will be able to put you in contact with the retirement plan administrator. Commonly, the plan administrator will provide you with a standard QDRO to complete and file with the Court.

DivorceWriter cannot provide you with a QDRO. Contact an attorney and/or the retirement plan administrator for assistance in drafting a QDRO.
We are each going to be liable for a percentage of one or more of our debts. How do we enter the information? If you are each going to be responsible for a percentage of a debt, make one entry for each spouse for each individual debt to be divided and indicate the percentage of responsibility for each spouse. Many judges will reject settlement agreements that do not contain the last four digits of an account number so you may wish to enter that information here as well.
Do we have to list the property we've agreed to divide? About 50% of DivorceWriter customers list property in the online interview. The property listed will appear on the settlement agreement that is included with your DivorceWriter document package. If no property is listed, the settlement agreement will indicate that there is no property to be divided.
Do we have to list the items of property we've agreed to divide? About 50% of DivorceWriter customers choose to list one or more items of property.
Do we have to list the debts we've agreed to divide? About 30% of DivorceWriter customers choose to list one or more debts.
Where is the Waiver of Equal Division and Waiver of Written Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law located in my documents? Your Ohio Separation Agreements contains a paragraph waiving equal division of property and waiving written Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law.
What if I don't know if I have debts to list? If you aren't sure whether you need to list any debts, select "yes" so that you have an opportunity to reconsider this decision in the "Additional Details" portion of the interview.
What if I don't know if I have property to list? If you aren't sure whether you need to list any property, select "yes" so that you have an opportunity to reconsider this decision in the "Additional Details" portion of the interview.
What is the "legal description" of a piece of real estate? The legal description is usually a one to two paragraph description of land that includes metes and bounds, lot number and/or block number in order to describe the exact legal boundaries of a piece of real estate. The legal description is not the same as the physical address of the property.

The legal description can be found on the deed to the property. The county clerk or recorder in the county where the property is located will be able to provide a copy of the legal description if you do not have a copy of the deed. In addition, often the property tax statement will list the legal description although you should note that the legal description is not the same as the tax or parcel ID number.
Why do my DivorceWriter documents say that we do not have life insurance or other property that we actually do have? Some states require divorcing spouses to provide information on several different types of property. If the interview did not request information on such property, such as life insurance, certain documents may indicate that the spouses do not have that type of property.

If you have received documents that indicate that you and your spouse do not have a particular type of that you actually have, you may e-mail your documents to yourself and then enter any applicable identifying information about the property in the space provided. With life insurance, for example, the Court generally will want know which spouse is the policy holder, the name of the insurance company, the policy number, the type of policy, any cash value, and any terms concerning the payment of premiums.

To e-mail your documents to yourself, log into your account at www.divorcewriter.com/Home_Login.asp. Then, on the review page of the interview under "Printing and Shipping Status," click on "E-mail Me a Copy of My Divorce Documents." Then, customize as needed and print.
Do we have to list the debts we have agreed to divide? About 30% of DivorceWriter customers list debts. The debts listed will appear on the settlement agreement that is included with your DivorceWriter document package. If no debts are listed, the settlement agreement will indicate that there are no debts to be divided.

The customer decides which debts, if any, to list, although Courts commonly expect debts related to real estate, vehicles, property with titles, and/or other valuable property to be listed as well as joint debts.
What if I don't know if I have property to list? If you need to add or remove property after receiving your documents, you have three options:
  1. Log into your account at www.divorcewriter.com/Home_Login.asp. Make the desired changes to your online interview responses. Then, on the review page of the interview under "Printing and Shipping Status," click on "E-mail Me a Copy of My Divorce Documents."
  2. E-mail your documents to yourself. Then, customize as needed and print.
  3. In the alternative, if you would like to have a hard copy of your documents shipped to you, contact customer service at info@divorcewriter.com.
What if I don't know if I have debts to list? If you need to add or remove debts after receiving your documents, you have three options:
  1. Log into your account at www.divorcewriter.com/Home_Login.asp. Make the desired changes to your online interview responses. Then, on the review page of the interview under "Printing and Shipping Status," click on "E-mail Me a Copy of My Divorce Documents."
  2. E-mail your documents to yourself. Then, customize as needed and print.
  3. In the alternative, if you would like to have a hard copy of your documents shipped to you, contact customer service at info@divorcewriter.com.
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SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES
What if one spouse is in the military? If both parties are willing to sign the papers, ending your marriage when a spouse is in the military is generally much like a regular dissolution or divorce, although there may be as many as three possible jurisdictions where the dissolution or divorce can be filed:
  • The legal residence of the military member
  • The legal residence of the spouse
  • The state where the servicemember is stationed

Typically, either you or your spouse must reside in Ohio or be stationed there in order to file for dissolution or divorce there. For additional information on residency requirements, the servicemember may wish to contact his or her local JAG office.
What if one spouse is living in a foreign country? It is important to note that with a dissolution of marriage, both spouses are required to attend. If both spouses cannot attend, a divorce is an option since only the spouse that files for divorce is required to attend the hearing. In Ohio, the non-filing spouse (Defendant) signs a Waiver of Service of Summons so that traditional service by personal delivery or certified mail is not required.

For any documents requiring the notarized signature of a spouse living in a foreign country, consular officials at any U.S. embassy or consulate abroad can provide a service similar to the functions of a notary public in the United States.

When completing the DivorceWriter online interview, leave the state field as "state" and enter the city and country in the city field, such as "Toronto, Canada."
What if I have an out of state driver's license or no license at all? If the spouse who files for divorce does not have a valid in-state driver's license, it may pose a problem if the Clerk requires one in order to prove that at least one spouse meets the residency requirements for filing for divorce. However, most Court Clerks do not require any form of identification when you file for divorce. If you have any additional questions concerning the identification requirements when filing for divorce, contact the Court Clerk.

Note: A Notary Public will almost always require some form of picture identification in order to notarize a signature.
What if my spouse and I don't live in the state shown on this page? If you and your spouse live in a different state than the one that is shown on this page, click the "State" box to the left to see whether DivorceWriter supports the state where you live.

If you and/or your spouse recently left the state shown on this page OR only one of you lives in this state, click the orange button to the left to review the residency requirements for this state.
What if my spouse is in the military? Either you or your spouse must meet the residency requirements in a given state or be stationed there in order to file for divorce in that state. If both parties are willing to sign the papers, ending your marriage when a spouse is in the military is much like a regular divorce.
I am not sure my marriage was legal. Do I even need a divorce? DivorceWriter is for people who want to end their marriages. If you have any questions regarding the validity of your marriage, you may need to contact a lawyer.
My spouse is currently incarcerated. What address do I use? You may use the address at the facility where your spouse is currently incarcerated. DivorceWriter documents must be signed by both husband and wife. As long as your spouse is capable of receiving documents and signing them in front of a notary public, if required in your state, you can use DivorceWriter.
My spouse is currently incarcerated. What address do I use? You may use the address at the facility where your spouse is currently incarcerated. DivorceWriter documents must be signed by both husband and wife. As long as your spouse is capable of receiving documents and signing them in front of a notary public, if required in your state, you can use DivorceWriter.
How do we get documents notarized in a foreign country? The meaning of the term "notary" varies widely from country to country. To find a Notary Public outside of the U.S. who performs the type of notarization customarily performed by a Notary Public in the U.S., contact a consular official at any U.S. embassy or consulate abroad.
I can't find my spouse. Can I still use DivorceWriter? DivorceWriter is designed for couples who have reached an agreement on all issues and who are both willing and able to sign divorce papers. You cannot use DivorceWriter if you are unable to locate your spouse and should instead contact an attorney licensed to practice law in your state.
What if my spouse is unwilling to sign the divorce documents? DivorceWriter is a self-help divorce product for people who have reached an agreement on all issues, including division of property and debts as well as matters concerning any children they may have, and who are both willing to sign documents to end their marriage. If you and your spouse are still disputing any matters, or if you think your spouse may refuse to sign the necessary documents, do not use DivorceWriter.

If, after filing for divorce, your spouse becomes uncooperative or unwilling to sign the final documents, you should contact an attorney immediately.
I received my DivorceWriter package today, but I'm not sure I want to file for divorce right away. How how long are these papers good for? Unsigned divorce documents do not have an expiration date per se. Applicable time periods begin to run on signed documents once the divorce is filed.

However, it is possible that changes in the law could occur at some point that might affect one or more documents or divorce filing procedures. If you decide to wait to file your documents for a significant period of time and are concerned that you may no longer have the most recent version we offer, DivorceWriter will provide you with another set at no additional charge.
My spouse is currently incarcerated. Can we still use DivorceWriter? DivorceWriter documents must be signed by both husband and wife. As long as your spouse is capable of receiving documents and signing them in front of a notary public, if required in your state, you can use DivorceWriter.
Does DivorceWriter provide gender-neutral documents for divorce in states where same-sex marriage is not specifically legalized, but is recognized when performed in another state? DivorceWriter's current policy is to gender-neutralize our online interview and documents once a state enacts legislation specifically legalizing same-sex marriage. However, most DivorceWriter forms can be downloaded in Microsoft Word and self-customized to contain gender-neutral terms. Additionally, most couples filing for divorce in states recognizing same-sex divorce do not encounter problems filing forms containing non gender-neutral terms such as "Husband" and "Wife" and "Mother" and "Father."
How do I end a civil union or domestic partnership? When recognized in the state, civil unions and/or domestic partnerships can be entered into by any couple regardless of gender. While they commonly convey many legal rights that are similar to those conveyed through marriage, civil unions and domestic partnerships are not created or ended in the same way that marriages are. With very limited exceptions, divorce forms cannot be used to dissolve civil unions and domestic partnerships. DivorceWriter does not currently offer forms for dissolving civil unions and domestic partnerships.

States that allow civil unions or domestic partnerships often offer forms to dissolve them on their state or county court websites.
Which states allow same-sex divorce? Same-sex couples are allowed to divorce in all states that allow gay marriage, which are currently California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii (begin Dec. 2, 2013), Illinois (begins June 2014), Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island,Vermont, Washington and also Washington, D.C.
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ADDITIONAL RESOURCES
Where can I find additional help? Additional help is available. Click here to find legal help from the American Bar Association. The ABA can help you find an attorney licensed to practice law in your state.
Where can I find the full-text version of the Ohio divorce statutes online? More information on divorce, dissolution, child support and custody, and spousal support (alimony) is available in Title 31 of the Ohio Revised Code.
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