How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask dkennedy Your Own Question
dkennedy, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 6009
Experience:  Over 15 years experience
Type Your Consumer Protection Law Question Here...
dkennedy is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

what are the advantages of a dissalusionment vs a divorce in

This answer was rated:

what are the advantages of a dissalusionment vs a divorce in the state of Ohio? My name is XXXXX XXXXX my husband's checking account and I have no access to his money. Our credit cards are separate. I have a duplex/rental property in West Virginia that was mine before our marriage. We have been married 6 and a half years and he runs up much credit card debt to take long expensive vacations with his son, family, and friends. I do not go with him. Will I be held accountable for this debt in a divorce and if so can I fight it? Will I be forced to sell my duplex in a divorce since there is no prenumptial agreement? Both of our names are XXXXX XXXXX home we live in but he makes the mortgage payments. He will not do any repairs on it and it has tens of thousands of dollars of repairs needed. Will I be held responsible for half the cost of the repairs ? If so can I sue him for neglect since I have paid for and done many of the repairs myself but do not have the money to do the rest? We own a log cabin that he is literally letting rot on the foundation. I have asked him to fix it and he won' comes before responsibility and work. What can I do. I have sent him emails with details of the repairs needed and his ignores me and asks me not to email him about it but refuses to sit down and discuss the situation. What should I do?



I would like to help you with this.

A dissolution of marriage is an action where the parties mutually agree to
terminate their marriage. Neither party has to prove grounds to end a marriage
by dissolution. This action is filed after the husband and wife have signed a
separation agreement regarding all property, spousal support and any
child-related issues. After jointly filing a Petition for Dissolution, the
parties must wait at least 30 days before the court will hear their case. The
case must be heard within 90 days of filing. At the hearing, the court will
review the separation agreement, ask about the assets and liabilities and any
parenting issues, and determine whether the parties understand and are satisfied
with the settlement. If the court is satisfied that, the parties agree and
desire to end their marriage, the court will grant a dissolution and order the
separation agreement into effect.

Divorce is a civil lawsuit to end a
marriage, arising when the husband and wife cannot resolve their problems, and
ask the court to make the final decisions concerning property division, spousal
support and matters regarding the children.

A divorce is started by one spouse, the plaintiff, who files a
complaint with the clerk of court. In the complaint, plaintiff must
claim, and eventually prove, the appropriate statutory grounds for divorce.
Discuss the statutory grounds and your facts with your attorney.


The clerk of court "serves" upon the other spouse, the defendant, a
copy of the complaint and a summons. Service is generally made by certified mail
or personal delivery. If the defendant's residence is not known, there is a
procedure for service by publishing a legal notice in a newspaper. This
publication method of service is effective for obtaining a divorce decree, but
generally is not effective for obtaining orders about matters such as
spousal or child support.

The defendant has 28 days after service of
the complaint and summons to file an answer to respond to the complaint. The
defendant may file a counterclaim requesting a divorce, stating the grounds the
defendant believes apply. The plaintiff files a reply in response to the


Most divorce cases are eventually settled by agreement. A proposed agreed
decree of divorce is prepared, signed by the parties and submitted to the court
for approval. If approved, the agreement is made effective by a court journal


If the parties cannot agree to resolve all of their disputed issues, the
disputes are presented to the court. The court will review the parties' evidence
and make its decision based on Ohio law.


Your husband may or may not agree to a dissolution, but he can't stop you from getting a divorce. The property you owned before the marriage will still be yours. You would probably not be held responsible for half the repairs. There are hundreds of details that would either have to be worked out by the two of you, or settled by the court. If you've been married a long time, there may be alimony. There may be a financial settlement. These are details that are not "cut and dried" but are different in every situation.


Can I answer any specific questions for you?


Customer: replied 4 years ago.

thank you for explaining the difference to me but I was aslo a victim of domestic violence in this marriage and have some permanent damage to my right arm. I was a nurse and I do not think I can get hired again. Do I have the right to alimony based on this? I am a threat to the patients as far as the possibility of dropping them due to my arm and shoulder injury. It does not seem to be severe but the nursing board does not seem to care. Any threat is grounds to be passed up for employment.

That would be a good case to get alimony IF the spouse has the money to pay. In other words the court will look at the amount a person earns and is able to pay as part of the decision on alimony. There's no sense getting a court order for spousal support (alimony) if a guy is just getting a few hundred a month in SS or something. It isn't going to happen. If he was the cause of the arm injury, he should pay. But, other things such as age, earning capacity, length of marriage and so on also goes into the decision.


Customer: replied 4 years ago.

He makes approximately 150,000.00 a year plus much is a reasonable amount to ask for? I made approximately $50,000.00 a year when I worked. I have not been back to work since the injury. I was in physical therapy three times a week for a year and it is still not 100% back to normal. The attorney I had at the time of the injury told me he thought the courts would expect me to get some kind of a nursing job, even if it paid less than I made and he would have to make up the difference in pay for the rest of my life. Is this true? I feel he should have to pay me $50,000 a year for life since I am in pain if I use the arm too much and can not use it for 8 hours a day in a real job. Most nursing jobs are 12 hour days. I stayed with him because I would loose my rental properties if I left him and could not work and make the mortgage payment. Also, we have a lot of debt due to his huge spending. Can I fight it or is all debt that was created inside a marriage divided equally in divorce? A lot of it is on my credit cards but it is his spending. Is there anything I can do? If I loose this one issue in divorce I will not have enough money to pay my mortgage and rent and will end up in the street...possibly for the rest of my life. That is why I stay and he is gone 90% of the time so I am safe. What are my options?

In California, it is a community property state, but when there is individual debt or property , it remains with the person most of the time. For instance, if you went to a dept store and amassed a huge credit card debt, it may be assigned to you to pay. Most of the assets and debts remain with the individual (separate debts and property) unless it was clearly a marital debt or asset. You have an excellent case for alimony from what you're telling me. He makes enough money, you're disabled, etc. etc.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

so Ohio is not a community state......that is good news.....when the injury happened in 2008 my husband filed for divorce but withdrew his plea once he found out he had to pay me alimony for life. The attorney I had at the time told me the judge would make me sell the rental property since it was a joint asset and he had dower rights to it......another attorney told me what was mine before our marriage was mine....just as you said......why was my attorney selling me upstream? How much does dower rights affect this rental property? It looks like I am going to get stuck with the credit card debt though...ugh...even though it is his spending. ....what are dower rights and how do they affect the rental property?

What was yours before the marriage is yours with few exceptions. Let's say he invested hundreds of thousands to fix up the rental property, they might say he gets some of that back. But, those instances are rare. That "dower rights" thing attaches to property acquired during the marriage. It used to be that property was in men's name and they made dower rights so that the wife had rights to property even if her name wasn't on it. like a "bride price".

Ohio is one of the few states that still have dower rights. In Ohio a spouse is given rights in a purchased property even if they had nothing to do with the purchase. Whenever a married person buys real estate in Ohio, the married person's spouse is automatically the recipient of this "dower" interest. Therefore any document that intends to convey or mortgage an interest in the property is not effective as to the dower interest of the spouse unless that spouse has also signed the document. Usually dower can be terminated by :

1. Signing of the document by the spouse-releasing dower.

2. Divorce of dissolution of marriage.

3. Death of a spouse.


But, this was not purchased during the marriage.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

thank you for clearing this up for me as the attorney I had was not guiding me in the right direction. He knew I had this property before I was married and my husband did not put one penney into it and yet he demanded I had to sell it in the divorce and give my husband half the profit. One last question about this subject.....can I sell the rental property while I am married and not give him any of the profit and do I need his signature to sell it or can I sell it behind his back? this attorney I had told me even if I sold it now I had to have his signature to sell it and he could stop the sale of the rental property if he did not want it sold. is this true? I have paid 100% of my own bills and rental property mortgage and repairs until the time of the injury. While in therapy for a year I made him pay my bills and one rental property loan for six months due to the fact I could not work to pay it. Once I was better the property was remodeled and rented and it began paying for itself again. Will he have any rights to it based on the fact that he paid about six months of a loan (300.00/month) until I was better or will it work against him because if I would not have been hurt by him I could have and would have made the payments myself? Other than this, he has not put one penney into it or sweat equity. Where does he stand on these issues?

I would say it would be a bad idea to sell it until the judge puts it in the divorce or dissolution order that it is yours. It would just cost you thousands in extra legal fees and so on. I would say his paying a few months on the loan would have nothing to do with him getting part of the property. That's just things married couples do.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

thank you for the info and advising me to not sell it now but I was just stated that if I were to sell it now that is could cost me thousands of dollars in legal fees....what do you mean by this? If it is mine why do I have to prove it is mine or what is the reason for these extra costs? I guess I was just hoping to get it sold and behind me with cash ready to buy a new house and get on with life. My first divorce dragged out for 6 years and I was hoping to have a fast one this time. My rental property is in demand right now as the Marcellus Shale drillers and pipe liners are in the area and rental property is at a premium. They will only be in the area for a couple of years and if I was going to sell it, now would be the time to make the highest profit. After they leave the value will decrease greatly just due to the area and economy. Wheeling is a ghost town and there are not any jobs here. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Could I be ordered to give him half the profit if I were to sell now? I may not be able to sell it after they leave or may end up with a loss. I was hoping to avoid a long "restart" in life if it does not sell easily....I did not want any loose ends this time. I just wanted to move on. What would I have to prove or what are the extra costs you speak about? Would putting it into a trust for my kids avoid all this?

I said this may cost you thousands in legal fees because it will be a "fighting issue" during the divorce more so if you sell it than not. What you have to understand is that just because everyone knows that building is yours does not mean he isn't going to fight for it. That's why divorces sometimes cost so much and go on for so long. Not because the issues are cloudy, but because the parties want to fight about each and every coffee table, car, house, photograph and dish. Men have egos that will not let them just "sign" and give up what they know they are not going to get anyway. By selling that house you will just be adding fuel to the fire. That, of course, is my opinion only.


Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I love your opinion.... my husband is a very vindictive man and he has said to me many times that he does not want the duplex but I replied to him and said that was true but he did not want me to have it either and he just snickered......he will fight just for the fight even if he knows he is going to loose.....he told me he was going to grind me into a nothing and taking my duplex would do exactly that. Are you basically saying that unless a judge makes him sign it over he is going to fight me for it and to not sell it will make the best opportunity for me to keep it and win over him?...just in the last few weeks he has said in a very vindictive voice that he really wants me to sell it now....I do not know why or what he knows that I do not but it does not sound good and like it is in my best interest. If this goes to divorce court is there anything I should tell the judge or make him aware of to help my case?

In the hundreds and hundreds of divorces/dissolutions I've had experience with, there are always those threats of "putting you out on the street", "taking everything you have" and yada yada. I can probably tell you (and I'm not psychic) that he tells you you're crazy, you have a bad attorney and he has a good one (the best I'm sure), he knows the judge, and much more. Bull. But, my best advice is to leave the assets alone for now and let the judge see exactly what the situation is. I would write notes of what you might want to say and stick to that. Very civil--no insults about the husband. let him be the fool, not you.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

you are wonderful and right on the money about him telling me I am crazy and he knows the judge, police, etc, and he has the best attorney. Thank you for giving me good advice and to remain civil and let him be the there anything in particular a judge would look for that will sway them one way or another? The log cabin we live in was bought two months before we were married....will that make any difference as far as the assets are concerned and it not being purchased in the marriage? my name is XXXXX XXXXX deed and mortgage both.

They will consider the log cabin as marital property I'm sure. No doubt. Judge's want property settlements done as easy and fast as possible. those that want to fight over cookware or lawnmowers, or obviously separate property really "ticks" them off. Be the civil one with determination and the law on your side. Best of luck to you!!!
dkennedy and 5 other Consumer Protection Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

thank you so much for and your patience and guidance. I hope all goes well when the time comes and that I will be able to stay above water financially and not loose the duplex. Blessings!!! you were wonderful !