14th May 2014
Our attorney’s have been practicing family law in Cincinnati, Hamilton, Clermont and Warren counties for over 20 years. During this time period we have seen the same misconceptions about divorce from potential clients. Our office has compiled a list of the top seven commonly held beliefs about divorce that are WRONG.
1. If I have a shared parenting plan, that means that I will have the child(ren) 50 percent of the time and I will not have to pay child support.
– Wrong – Shared Parenting goes to how you will raise your child(ren). It does not automatically mean that you will have 50 percent of the parenting time, nor does it mean you will not pay or receive child support. In fact, even if you have a shared parenting plan that divides parenting time equally, if you and your spouses’ incomes are not relatively equal a support order could be issued.
2. My child(ren) want to live with me, so that settles the issue of custody.
– Wrong – Ohio Courts did away with the concept of “the age of election” years ago. A child’s wishes are one element that a Court considers in making a custody determination, but it is not dispositive. The older the child is, the more weight a Court will put on that child’s wishes as to custody.
3. I can only have my child support order reviewed every 3 years.
– Wrong – The child support enforcement agency will conduct reviews at a preset time, but an individual is free to file a motion to modify child support either up or down at anytime. If there has been a 10 percent change in the order, the Court will modify the support accordingly.
4. I am not responsible for credit card bills because my name’s not on the account.
– Wrong – Whose name is on an account does not matter in family law. The question is, was the debt incurred during the marriage, and was if for marital purposes. If the answer to both of these questions is yes, it is a marital debt with the presumption that it will be divided evenly.
5. Even though my spouse inherited our home, I will still receive one half of the value in a divorce.
– Wrong – Inherited property is separate property in Ohio. As long as it is traceable and not commingled, it will not be divided. This is why it is so important to keep inherited property in separate account(s) and not combined with other marital account(s).
6. I want to file my divorce before my spouse does because I do not want to give them the advantage.
– Wrong – If you live in Cincinnati, Hamilton, Warren or Clermont County, filing your divorce first does not give you any advantage, In fact if there are children and temporary orders for custody and support are needed, filing 2nd might actually be an advantage.
7. If I would like to, or my spouse wants me to “give up my rights to the children” I can do that and I will not have to pay child support.
– Wrong- You cannot voluntarily give up your rights to your child to relieve a duty of support. If another individual adopts the child(ren), the adoption will terminate rights to a child and any future child support.