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1,400 entries in Ohio divorce file catches national attention

A lot of news sources mention divorce, whether it is a general study about divorce rates or a specific case. Although there is a lot of talk about divorce, when a case doesn't involve a celebrity or a well-known public figure, the typical divorce tends to stay out of the news.

That is unless there are highly unusual circumstances, and that is exactly what has pushed one Ohio divorce case into the national media. Why? The two spouses have been fighting it out for 17 years -- 7 years longer than the marriage itself lasted.

The couple was married in 1986. For 10 years, the couple stayed together. Then, everything changed and the couple filed for a divorce that judges and lawyers across the state have weighed in on. 

It took five years for the couple to finalize their divorce. A property settlement was agreed on and a custody order was drafted concerning parenting time for their two children. Although revisiting a custody or support agreement is not unusual, how many times the couple made requests certainly was. 

During and since the divorce there have been 1,400 requests, motions and other issues cited in their divorce file. To put this data into perspective for those less experienced wtih divorce, that number is at least 1,000 "instances" higher than the average divorce. These requests have even caused custody to change hands at least twice. 

The couple -- two professors of law -- were reprimanded by Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge Leslie Ghiz this July. She wrote that the pair "should be thoroughly embarrassed and ashamed of their behavior."

Others were simply shocked by the case. One used the phrase "holy cow," while another said "You don't see (large numbers of) entries like that."

The truth is that this type of divorce is rare, and it was created by the couple. An adversarial divorce does not mean that couples have to fight "to the end." It is more a term that refers to filing a divorce action in court, each party represented independently during the process. Alternatively, a couple could obtain a dissolution by agreement. 

When discussing divorce with an Ohio attorney, a client simply needs to tell the attorney what his or her goals, intentions and desires are for the process. An attorney will help pick the best course of action for their situation. 

Source: USA Today, "17-year divorce fight tests Ohio courts," Kimball Perry, Aug. 12, 2013

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