Thank you for your question.
1) For divorce purposes your separation of nine years ago is irrelevant unless this was a legal separation
(granted through the courts), so for a discussion of rights, the entire 30 years of marriage are relevant.
2) Protection of assets
. When you file for divorce, the parties are restrained from moving their assets around in order to avoid a proper distribution of the courts. Along with your petition for divorce, both parties are required to provide financial statements to account for all the separate and marital property that was accumulated during the marriage. Right now both parties are entitled to access their accounts, so right now there is nothing you can do to stop him from moving them around. My suggestion would be to collect copies of all assets, so that you can present this as evidence to the court if he were ever to deny them. So before you make your announcement of an impending divorce you need to make copies of all assets, accounts, debt records, business records, and even deed records, as it has been known where documents have been destroyed to cheat the other spouse of their interest.
. In Ohio all property acquired during the marriage is subject to equitable distribution
(what is fair and equitable under the circumstances). Debts mostly incurred my one spouse are their responsibility unless it can be shown that the debts where obtained for the benefit of the marriage. In addition contributions towards a spouse's separate property is subject to reimbursement. For the marital assets distribution is based on the particular circumstances of your marriage and needs, it is not an automatic 50/50 split.
4) Spousal support.
Spousal support is awarded based on evidence presented showing financial need. Given that you have just started your own business, and may not have the financial resources to be able to live without hardship, the court has the discretion to award spousal support. The length of marriage is typically used as a guide in deciding whether the support should be temporary or permanent. In general long term marriages can result in a permanent support, but again this would depend on the needs that you can show to the court.
. You can read the factors the judge will consider in a distribution of property
and spousal support as well as requirements for a divorce in Ohio here.
Divorce packets are usually contained in the county clerk's office where divorces are handled. The following website here
provides a check list for the divorce filing, but this is for Butler County, so check with your county court clerk for a local check list if they have any. But this should give you an idea on how to proceed.
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