Domestic Relations

What Rights do Grandparents Have after Divorce?

Q.: Our son and his wife divorced in 2003. Since then, our son has moved away and is late in his support payments, and now our former daughter-in-law will not allow us to see our grandchildren. What can we do?

A.: The Ohio Legislature passed laws in 1990 that provide a method for grandparents of divorced or deceased parents to get visitation orders so that they can maintain relationships with their grandchildren. Grandparents may also obtain court-ordered visitation with an illegitimate child. In addition, grandparents may intervene in the parents' divorce case at any time, even after the divorce has been granted, and ask the court to award them their own visitation schedule with their grandchildren. Grandparents may also file a complaint for companionship in juvenile court in cases where the grandchild is illegitimate or where their own child is deceased and they are having trouble visiting his or her offspring. The 1990 Ohio laws provide that a court may order visitation if it determines this to be in the best interest of the children.  The court must consider 16 factors including the wishes of the parents of the child in making that determination.

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What Birth Parents Should Know about Adoption Process

Q.: Do the birth parents choose the adoptive couple for their child?

A.: Yes. Birth parents are responsible for choosing the adoptive couple, or the attorney or agency handling the adoption could assist them.

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What Are the Residency Requirements for Ohio Guardians?

Many of us are called upon at some point in our lives to name a guardian for someone who is vulnerable because of age or disability. It is important to consider residency requirements before making a choice.

Q.: Is there a general rule about the residency of guardians?

A.: The general rule is that a guardian for an Ohio resident must also be a resident of Ohio. One reason for such a rule is that it is very difficult to be an effective guardian for someone who lives far away.

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Step-Parent Adoption Is Permanent

Step-parent adoption in Ohio can be a fairly simple process, and it can be a wonderful step to take, so long as the parties understand the seriousness and permanence of the relationship that is being created and the one that is being terminated. Throughout this article, the term "adoption" will refer to step-parent adoption.

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Spousal Support Determined Case by Case

Q.:  I’m starting divorce proceedings against my husband.  How much spousal support am I eligible to receive?

A.: It depends.  Since there is no “black letter law” on spousal support, it must be determined on a case-by-case basis.

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Sharing Parental Responsibilities After Separation

When parents come before the domestic relations court to terminate their marriage, the most important issues the court must address involve what will happen to their children. The marriage may end, but both former spouses will still be parents, and their children will still need to be cared for and protected.

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Pending Divorce Does Not Change Marital Status for Income Tax Filing

Q.:  My spouse and I are going through a divorce, but it has not been finalized.  Should I file my income tax return as a married person or as a single person?

A.: If at income tax time the divorce is still pending, then you still are married and that is the status that must be used.

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Parents May Be Liable for Child's Actions

Q.: Our 16-year-old daughter recently began driving. Since she is a minor, would we be found liable for any damage or injury she might cause while operating a car?

A.: Parents will generally not be held liable for damages to person or property caused by their children's operation of a motor vehicle. There are exceptions to this general rule, however. Ohio's financial responsibility laws provide that the parent signing the child's application for an operator's license can be liable for damage or injury caused by the child's operation of the gay fuck
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family motor vehicle if that parent fails to provide the insurance required by state law.

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Ohio’s Marriage Laws

Marriage is a legal as well as spiritual and personal relationship. When you repeat your marriage vows, you enter into a legal contract. There are three parties to that legal contract: 1) you; 2) your spouse; and 3) the State of Ohio. The state is a party to the contract because under its laws, you have certain obligations and responsibilities to each other, to any children you may have, and to Ohio.

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Ohio Law Allows Attorney-Arranged Adoptions

Q.: I thought only an agency could arrange an adoption, but my friend says her attorney is handling hers. Is this legal in Ohio?

A.: Yes. Ohio law says that either an adoption agency or an attorney may handle an adoption. However, judges in some counties do not accept the birth parents' consent to the adoption of their child. In these counties an attorney can work with an agency. In such a cooperative arrangement (sometimes referred to as a “targeted adoption”) the attorney handles or coordinates the preliminary work, including the matching of the birthparents with a family. The agency, rather than the court, accepts the birth parents’ consent to the adoption of their child.

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