Thanks for the further information.
There may be a number of reasons as to why he is "dragging" his feet to start divorce proceedings. It may be that he doesn't want you to "get your share" of the marital estate, or that he doesn't want to pay you alimony
. It may also be that he is trying to "move assets" into accounts with only his name on the account, thereby TRYING (but won't be successful) to get the court to believe that the asset is in his name only. It could also have to do with your marital home. If there is a mortgage on the home, is there any equity? Or, with the dive in the housing market, is your house "under water," meaning that you owe more than what it is worth? These may also be factors in your husband's decision not to file. Also, he may be trying to (but again, will most likely not be successful) change beneficiary designations on accounts. These are just SOME possibilities. But, depending upon your individual circumstances, there may be more or less.
IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT YOU COPY ALL OF THE FINANCIAL INFORMATION THAT YOU HAVE REGARDING EVERY ACCOUNT, RETIREMENT, HEALTH CARE, BANK ACCOUNT, SAVINGS BONDS, 401k's CD's, MORTGAGE, ETC. That way, if suddenly paperwork "doesn't exist," you will have a copy. Moreover, when you meet with an attorney, you will be able to show him/her the information. It will prove helpful when determining how assets may be divided, whether alimony should be awarded, etc.
Also, if at all possible, DO NOT leave the marital home. If you do so, you will have to find somewhere else to live (pay rent, etc.) and MAY still have to pay for a portion of the marital home expenses. If he leaves, he may be ordered to pay a portion of the marital home expenses. But, usually, if a couple can find a way to live together until a divorce is granted, it is far less expensive for both parties. However, if there is a threat of violence or there is NO way for you to live under the same roof, then so be it!
Ohio is an "equitable distribution
" state. That means that the marital property must be divided "equitably." However, "equitable" does NOT necessarily mean "equal."
Below is a link to a site that discusses the factors that the court will look at when determining how to divide the marital property. It also discusses the factors that the court will look at when determining whether alimony should be granted.
It is important to remember that in a divorce (without children), everything is negotiable. That means, for example, you may be awarded a 401k in exchange for your husband being awarded other assets. Or, you could be awarded the marital home (especially if it is paid for) in exchange for giving him other monetary accounts.
In a long term marriage
, such as yours, it is important to think about health care, life insurance and social security benefits. Sometimes, (and certainly not always), people may consider a legal separation
instead of a divorce. But....again, those are specific issues that are individualized based on the facts of your case.
You may wish to speak to an attorney who specializes in family law. Since it is not your husband's forte, you don't have to be very worried about an attorney not being willing to meet with you, or if necessary, to take your case.
Below is a link to the Ohio Legal Services page that will direct you to the local Bar Association in your area. You can call and be referred to an attorney who specializes in family law. Sometimes, an initial consultation is free or at a minimal charge. You can discuss the specific facts of your case, show the attorney your paperwork, evaluate your options and decide how to proceed.http://www.ohiolegalservices.org/programs/ohio-lawyer-referral-programs-1
My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have gotten anything less, please reply back, I am happy to address follow-up questions.
Thank you for your business!
***Answers given are for informational purposes only and are not meant to replace the advice or assistance of an attorney licensed to practice law in your state. If you need any more information, please do not hesitate to ask. Thank you!