How Much Does Divorce Cost in Ohio?

How Much Does Divorce Cost in Ohio?
October 19, 2022

Individuals who are contemplating ending their marriage have a lot on their minds. This is a huge life shift, and it requires guidance and experience to get through it successfully. In order to make sure that the proceedings are fair, many couples opt for legal help from a divorce attorney or family lawyer. Before obtaining legal aid, however, couples could start to wonder or worry about cost and whether they can actually afford a divorce. 

The team at CLS Law understands this trepidation, especially if financial tensions are already high. This brief primer on the cost of divorce in Ohio can help you to understand the factors that affect average divorce costs.

Average Divorce Costs

A set of averages can never tell the whole story, but it can give individuals an idea of how much they could expect to spend. General estimates put the cost of divorce in Ohio at anywhere from $4,000 to $8,000 on the lower end, and as high as $15,000 or more. For more complex or disputed divorce cases, that cost will naturally increase. Clearly, there is a wide range at play, and the only accurate answer is, “it depends.” 

Factors that Affect Divorce Cost

There are some basic, across-the-board fees and costs that every couple filing for divorce will face. These include court costs–which can vary from one county to another–and retainer fees for a divorce attorney.  One variable that is based entirely on a couple’s life circumstances is the expense incurred to have a special expert open an investigation and testify at a trial to satisfy a claim or contestation. Here are a few circumstances that could make it necessary to hire an expert:

  • Disputes over property value
  • Determining each individual’s pre-marital money values from retirement, pension, or investment accounts
  • Determining the marital value of a business and business-related assets owned by one spouse
  • Disputes over personal property or determining the interest of the non-owner in their spouse’s expensive property
  • Separate property claims arising from money inherited or property purchased prior to marriage
  • Determining the best living arrangements and financial support for minor children
  • Opening an investigation to gather evidence to support accusations in “fault” cases 

Any dispute on any topic will cause a divorce to become more complicated, more expensive, and it will draw out the process. This is just one reason that collaborative divorce and mediation can help. Through these processes, a couple can come to more efficient resolutions. A court trial, on the other hand, can bring unwanted complexity and a naturally lengthened time frame and cost spectrum.

Other factors that could lead to increased costs can include: 

  • Any revision requests to court-finalized documents and decrees
  • Complexities that create additional work for a divorce attorney
  • Disputes over child custody and visitation
  • Whether a couple opts for divorce or dissolution
  • Amount of time married
  • Income increases and accumulation of assets and property
  • Divorce attorney’s experience and rates

The actual cost of the fees, experts, and legal assistance needed to process a divorce is only part of the total cost. The factors that aren’t part of this calculation are the financial assets and property that may need to be relinquished, along with the allocation of any outstanding debt and the potential for spousal support. These don’t make up any part of our cost range estimate, but they are costs that will affect the individuals moving forward. 

Rely on Experienced Divorce Attorneys

At the Law Offices Of Cara L. Santosuosso, LLC, we realize that however couples handle divorce, it is a massive upheaval, on every level. While there are many factors involved and countless ways that costs and time frame can expand, the most important factor of all is whether you and your partner are ready to find agreement. If you are both committed to an amicable ending, then with the skill of an experienced family lawyer on your side, you can reduce friction and increase efficiency. Our team is ready to help you find an equitable resolution–reach out to us today!