Ohio's Temporary Child Custody Laws

By Heather Frances J.D.

Ohio courts typically decide child custody issues, called parental rights and responsibilities, as part of the Ohio divorce process. Final custody arrangements are often not ordered until the court issues the final divorce decree. If you and your spouse cannot agree on a mutually satisfactory custody arrangement to use until the court issues its decree, either of you may ask the court for a temporary custody order.

Ohio courts typically decide child custody issues, called parental rights and responsibilities, as part of the Ohio divorce process. Final custody arrangements are often not ordered until the court issues the final divorce decree. If you and your spouse cannot agree on a mutually satisfactory custody arrangement to use until the court issues its decree, either of you may ask the court for a temporary custody order.

Temporary Custody

Once you begin your divorce process, the divorce court has authority to enter a temporary custody or support order to be in effect while the divorce is pending; however, such orders are not automatic. To obtain a custody order, you must file a motion with the court or include your request in your initial divorce complaint, along with a plan for custody. If you and your spouse agree on the custody arrangement, you can file the motion and plan together, but if you don’t agree, each of you must file separate motions and separate custody plans.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More

Court Review

If you and your spouse agree, the court likely will approve your plan as proposed. Even so, the court’s ultimate goal is to determine what is in the best interests of your child, so Ohio law gives the court authority to investigate as needed to determine the child’s best interests. The court may look into the parents’ earning ability, past conduct and family relations, and order you and your spouse to submit to medical, psychiatric and psychological examinations to help it reach a decision about what arrangements are in your child’s best interests.

Types of Custody

Ohio courts can award all parental rights and responsibilities to one parent, called the sole residential parent and legal custodian. If you are have sole residential and legal custody, you make the important decisions for your child, including where he goes to school, what medical treatment he receives and whether he attends religious services. Your ex-spouse will have no authority to make these decisions. In the alternative, the court may grant the rights and responsibilities of parenting to both parents, which is called shared parenting.

Shared Parenting

In Ohio, the court cannot award shared parenting unless at least one parent requests it and files a shared parenting plan with the court. Shared parenting does not necessarily mean you and your ex-spouse have an equal, 50/50 division of time with your child. Some shared parenting plans give parents equal physical time with their child while other plans may give one parent a greater share of time and the other parent custody on alternating weekends and one or two evenings during the week.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
Family Law Custody Agreements Made Outside Court

References

Related articles

How to Petition for Sole Custody in New York

Sole custody is a custody arrangement in which one parent has sole decision-making authority over the child in addition to providing the child's primary residence. The other parent is almost always awarded some form of visitation. Because custody disputes can be complex and stressful, it's wise to hire legal counsel if your ex does not want you to obtain sole custody. However, you can begin the process on your own.

NH Laws About Getting Physical Custody of Children

New Hampshire has joined the ranks of a few other states that no longer use the term "custody" to describe the legal responsibilities of parents. So, when you file for divorce in New Hampshire, the court will award parental rights and responsibilities instead of custody. If you wish to have physical custody of your child, you must indicate that on your divorce petition and note whether you want this authority to be held solely by you or shared with your ex-spouse.

How to File for Custody of Children Prior to Divorce in Florida

Florida courts have moved away from using the term "custody" and instead assign either shared or sole "parental responsibility" along with a time-sharing schedule. If you are in the process of divorcing in Florida, you do not have to wait until the divorce is finalized to ask the court to rule on parental responsibility.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

What are the Child Custody Rights of the Non Custodial Parent in Ohio?

Understanding the rights of a noncustodial parent in Ohio can be important for the initial allocation of physical and ...

Filing for Physical Custody in Virginia

Both parents and Virginia courts are primarily concerned with what is in the best interests of the child in a divorce ...

Laws Governing Child Custody in South Carolina

Divorcing spouses in South Carolina who agree on how to split custody of their child are free to come up with their own ...

What Happens After Filing for Divorce in Oregon?

When you file for divorce, you will complete a divorce petition. The petition asks for personal information about both ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED