Separation and Divorce


Questions About Divorce

Can I file for divorce in Ohio if I live in another state?

Only Ohio residents may file for divorce in Ohio.

What is a mutual restraining order?

A mutual restraining order is a court order issue automatically be the court when a divorce is filed.  These orders prevent both spouses from doing certain acts until a divorce is granted.  A sample Mutual Restraining Order is available on this website.  For more information, see Local Rule 24 

Where do I report for my uncontested divorce or my dissolution hearing?

Report to the courtroom indicated on your notice one-half hour before the scheduled time.  Courtrooms are located on the third floor.  

What documents do I need to bring to my uncontested divorce hearing?

You will need the following:
  • Judgment Entry for Divorce
  • Signed Separation Agreement or In-Court Agreement (if you have one)
 If you have children you will also need:
  • Health Insurance Affidavit
  • Child Support Computation Worksheet
  • Parent Education Seminar certificate (if not already filed)
  • Parenting Proceeding Affidavit (if not already filed)
  • Shared Parenting Plan (if you have one)
You must also bring verification of your income.  The Judge or Magistrate may ask you questions about aspects of your judgment entry or agreement for which you may need documentation.

Two weeks before the hearing you must have your documents approved by the Court's Information Services located in room 306.. Failure to have your documents approved could cause your hearing to be delayed or rescheduled. Refer to Local Rule 28 for more information. 

What documents do I need to bring to my dissolution hearing?

  • Judgment Entry of Dissolution 
  • Signed Separation Agreement 
If you have children you will also need:
  • Health Insurance Affidavit
  • Child Support Computation Worksheet
  • Parent Education Seminar certificate (if not already filed)
  • Parenting Proceeding Affidavit (if not already filed)
  • Shared Parenting Plan (if you have one)
You must also bring verification of your income. The Judge or Magistrate may ask you questions about aspects of your judgment entry or agreement for which you may need documentation. 

Two weeks before the hearing you must have your documents approved by the Court's Information Services located in room 306.   Failure to have your documents approved could cause your hearing to be delayed or rescheduled.  Refer to Local Rule 28 for more information

What are QDROs, DOPOs and COAPs?

A Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO), Division of Property Order (DOPO) and Court Order Acceptable for Processing (COAP) are special orders that direct how pension plans are to be divided.  A QDRO divides a private pension plan; a DOPO divides a state of Ohio public pension plan; and a COAP divides a federal pension plan.  All must be approved by the pension plan administrator.  Because QDROs, DOPOs and COAPs are complicated you are encouraged to contact an attorney if you have a pension plan that must be divided.

Will the Court send me a copy of my final papers?

The Court will not send you a copy of the final divorce/dissolution papers unless you request in writing that a copy be sent to you.   Fees must be paid in advance. 

How can I get a certified copy of my divorce/dissolution/legal separation/annulment Judgment Entry?

Certified copies of your Judgment Entry may be obtained through the Clerk of Courts located in Room 35, on the ground floor of the Cuyahoga County Courthouse, 1 W. Lakeside Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44113.  Effective July 15, 2015, all copies purchased from the Clerk of Courts' Office are 5 cents per page.  Certified copies are an additional $1.00.