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Rule 2: Assignment of Judge and Consolidation of Cases

(A) Assignment

Actions filed in Domestic Relations Court shall be assigned to a judge by the Clerk of Courts through a  manual or electronic process  that ensures a random selection of the judge and preserves the identity of the judge until selected.

(B)  Reassignment  

      (1)  Actions filed in which the same parties have been previously engaged in litigation in this Court shall be reassigned to the previously assigned judge or the successor judge.

       (2)  When it is necessary for a case already assigned to a judge to be reassigned due to a recusal, the Administrative Judge will reassign a judge, at random, and record the reassignment on the docket.

(C) Consolidation of Cases and Partial Dismissal of Claims

(1)   When both parties have filed complaints for divorce, legal separation, or annulment, the court shall consolidate the cases.  The matter shall proceed under the case number of the complaint upon which service was obtained first.  The other complaint shall operate as a counterclaim when it is served.  Any orders issued prior to consolidation shall remain in full force and effect.


(2)   When two or more domestic family cases are originally filed or are transferred from another court involving children of the same parents, the cases will be consolidated into the lowest case number, as provided in Civ.R. 42(A)(1)(b).


(3)   When a domestic family case is originally filed or transferred from another court that relates to a pending or previously decreed divorce, legal separation, annulment, or dissolution of marriage, the domestic family case will be consolidated into the pending or previously decreed case as provided in Civ.R. 42(A)(1)(b).


When a domestic family case originally filed in this court has been consolidated into a pending divorce, legal separation, annulment or dissolution of marriage action, and the pending action is dismissed without final orders regarding child support or custody, the domestic family claim shall proceed under the consolidated case number.


(4)   The transfer of a domestic family case is rendered incomplete when the pending action into which the domestic family case was consolidated is dismissed without final orders on child support and custody.  The domestic family case will be returned to the originating court as required by R.C. 2151.235(E).


(5)   Domestic violence cases shall not be consolidated with any other case type.


(6)   No case shall be consolidated into a previously dismissed action.


(Effective July 1,  1991.  Amended effective September 30, 1991; June 1, 1993; February 14, 1994; December 11, 2000; December 1, 2002; February 1, 2005; August 14, 2009; July 1, 2010; March 15, 2011; May 22, 2013; November 1, 2014; December 22, 2014; January 19, 2017; May 2, 2018; July 27, 2020)

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