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How long does a divorce take in Ohio?

Wondering how long a divorce takes in Ohio? We cover everything you need to know and the factors that will impact the timetable of an Ohio divorce.

evident Editorial Team
November 20, 2023
Stopwatch on table

If you are filing for divorce in Ohio, you are probably wondering how long a divorce takes in Ohio. Divorce can be a stressful and disruptive process, so it is only natural to wonder how long it takes. 

The short answer is that a divorce in Ohio can take from several months to over a year, depending on certain factors. We’ll discuss those factors below along, with everything else you need to know about how long a divorce takes in Ohio.

Key Takeaways

Filing for divorce or dissolution in Ohio

For a contested divorce in Ohio, you’ll need to file the necessary paperwork in the Court of Common Pleas in the county where you live. (The Court of Common Pleas is the court that hears general matters in the state of Ohio, and there is one in each of Ohio’s 88 counties). 

For a dissolution of marriage (or uncontested divorce), you may file for divorce in the county where either you or your spouse reside. 

The exact fee may vary between counties, but most counties' filing fee for divorce or dissolution in Ohio is typically between $200 and $400.

Contested vs. Uncontested Divorce in Ohio

A key factor in how long divorce takes in Ohio is whether you are dealing with an uncontested divorce or a contested divorce. 

Uncontested divorces in Ohio are also called a “dissolution of marriage” and take place when both spouses agree on all matters related to the divorce (such as the division of property, spousal support, and child custody). Uncontested divorces are typically faster (and cheaper) because the court does not need to step in and resolve any issues or disputes between the spouses.

Contested divorces, on the other hand, occur when the spouses cannot agree on one or more issues in their divorce. Contested divorces have much broader ranges of time and cost because so much will depend on the particular circumstances involved, including how many issues are contested and how contentious those issues are.

(Also, note that both fault and no-fault grounds for divorce are available in Ohio. Filing for divorce on fault-based grounds may also complicate the process as the filing spouse will have to present evidence to prove the other spouse is at fault for the failure of the marriage).

How long does an uncontested divorce take in Ohio?

Typically, uncontested divorces, known as dissolutions of marriage in Ohio, take 30 to 90 days after the divorce petition is filed.

(And if you are wondering how long does a dissolution of marriage take in Ohio, the answer is the same -- 30 to 90 days).

Keep in mind, though, that the 30-90 days timeline for a dissolution in Ohio reflects the time after the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage is filed.

It may take considerable time to reach an agreement with your spouse, but that will depend on your particular circumstances.

How long does a contested divorce take in Ohio?

The timeline of a contested divorce in Ohio can vary greatly, but typically contested divorces in Ohio take anywhere from four months to two years to finalize.

The time a contested divorce takes in Ohio will depend factors like how many issues are in dispute and how contentious the divorce is.

Keep in mind that divorces with children typically take longer than divorces without children in Ohio.

Does it take long to get divorced in Ohio?

It is difficult to provide a single, clear answer to how long a divorce takes in Ohio. As mentioned, the timeline for an Ohio divorce will depend on what issues are in dispute and how complicated or contentious those issues are. 

For instance, if matters such as child support and child custody are involved, the divorce process may take longer. Similarly, if you have straightforward assets and limited marital property, your divorce will probably take less time than if there are complicated assets (such as if a spouse owns their own business or has a significant ownership interest in a business).

So how long does a typical divorce take in Ohio? It's hard to say, because there really is no such thing as a "typical" divorce. That said, the timelines noted above for contested and uncontested divorce in Ohio should give you a sense of what to expect.

Residency requirements for divorce in Ohio

Under Ohio divorce laws, the filing spouse must have lived in Ohio for six months before filing.

The divorce will be based in the county where the filing spouse has lived for the last 90 days. 

If you are filing for an uncontested divorce (or dissolution of marriage) and your spouse lives in a different county within Ohio, you can choose which county you file for divorce in.

Ohio Divorce Waiting Period

Many people wonder, “does Ohio have a divorce waiting period?” No, there is no specific waiting period for divorce in Ohio and you do not have to be legally separated before filing for divorce.

The key limitations in this regard are simply the residency requirements discussed above.

The Bottom Line

So, how long does a divorce take in Ohio? Divorce in Ohio can take anywhere from 45 days to two years, depending on your particular circumstances. 

The timeline of an Ohio divorce will depend on whether your divorce is contested or an uncontested dissolution of marriage.

And within contested divorces, how long the divorce process takes will depend on how many issues are in dispute, how complicated those issues are, and how contentious the divorce is.