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The court is located on the second floor of the Dayton-Montgomery County Courts Building, 301 W. Third Street, Dayton, Ohio 45422 in downtown Dayton. View directions to the court.
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The Domestic Relations Court hears complaints for divorce, petitions for dissolution of marriage, complaints for legal separations, complaints for annulments, petitions for civil domestic violence protection orders and petitions for dating violence civil protection orders.
The Domestic Relations Court also hears motions from divorced parties to modify a child support order, modify a parenting time order, modify a child custody order, modify a spousal support order, motions for contempt and motions from married parties on child support.
All Court notices are sent out by regular mail from the Clerk of Court’s Office. If you are unsure of your hearing date, you may contact the Court’s Assignment Office at 937-225-4087. The Court will be able to look up the case using the case number. The Court may also be able to locate a case by using the parties’ last names at the time of final divorce or civil protection order, and the dates of birth of the parties.
The Clerk of Courts collects all fees and costs for Domestic Relations Cases. The specific cost are outlined in the Courts Filing Costs and FeesPage.
For questions for the Compliance Office please call 937-225-4782 and follow the prompts. Please leave a message for your particular officer. Due to current COVID-19 protocols, the Compliance Officers are unavailable to provide face-to-face assistance at this time. For more information, please visit our Compliance Office website.
The Dayton Bar Association's Lawyer Referral Service may be able to assist you in obtaining an attorney. For additional information, call their office at 937-222-6102.
You may call the Legal Aid Society of Dayton at 888-534-1432, to see if you qualify for free legal representation. You may call the Volunteers Lawyers Project at 937-461-3857, to see if you qualify for free legal representation. You may call the University of Dayton Law Clinic at 937-229-3817, to see if you qualify for free legal representation.
If you are ordered to appear in court on a motion to show cause (contempt) filed by your spouse/ex-spouse, for which you could be sentenced to jail:
Most people are more satisfied with their court experience and results if they get an attorney. You may represent yourself. The term "pro-se" means that a person is self-represented. However, if you choose to represent yourself, you are required to follow court procedures and the law.
If you choose to represent yourself, all documents may be submitted to the Compliance Office for review. There are drop-off bins located on the 2nd floor lobby of Montgomery County Domestic Relations Court. The Compliance Office will review your documents and contact you regarding your next step.
Most people find that the best way to get a divorce is to hire an attorney. A divorce is started when a legal pleading called "complaint for divorce" is filed with the Clerk of Courts, along with instructions for service and payment of the filing fee. A party must attend all the hearings required by the court and prepare all the necessary paperwork to complete the case.
For information regarding the Eleven Grounds for filing a divorce, view the Citizen's Guide (PDF). To determine what documents need to be filed with your divorce complaint, see what Forms Are Required.
If you do not have an attorney, you may submit your documents to the Compliance Office for review.
Most people feel the best way to get an annulment is to get an attorney. A religious annulment and a legal annulment are not the same. A legal annulment is a very limited statutory proceeding and has specific time limits. The procedure is similar to a divorce. You have to file a complaint for an annulment and there has to be a hearing. For information regarding the grounds for filing an annulment, and to see the Six Statutory Grounds For Annulment, view the Citizen's Guide (PDF). To determine what documents need to be filed with your annulment complaint, please visit What Forms Are Required.
You can file a Motion for Continuance if you have good cause that prevents you from attending court. Please refer to Local Rule 4.20 (PDF). Filing a Motion for Continuance (PDF) does not mean that it will be granted. Continuances may be denied. The court will issue an order either granting your continuance and setting a new date (OR) denying your continuance request. If the motion is denied the hearing will go forward as scheduled, even if you are not there. You will need to submit your motion and proposed entry of continuance to the court at least 3 business days prior to your hearing.
In compelling circumstances and with appropriate safeguards, the Court may permit "remote testimony" instead of personal appearance. A motion must be filed with the reasons preventing personal appearance. This motion must be filed at least 5 days prior to the scheduled hearing.
If you do not agree with the final decision of a Judge; you or the attorney of your choice can file a written notice of appeal with the Second District Court of Appeals within 30 days of the time-stamped date of the decision. If you file an appeal to a Judge's decision you will need a transcript to support your claim about the decision. These procedures have technical, procedural, and time requirements. It is important that you consult with an attorney concerning your legal rights.
If you do not agree with a Magistrate's Decision, you or the attorney of your choice may file objections to said decision within 14 days of the time-stamped date of the decision. If you file objections to a Magistrate's decision you may need a transcript to support your claim about the decision.
Make a Motions to Modify Child or Spousal Support:
For information on establishing a support order, please see Establishing a Child Support Order Page .
Contact the Court Reporter at 937-225-4875 to request a transcript. Fee for preparation of transcript is $5 per page to be paid to the court reporter before the transcript is prepared.
All parents who file for divorce or dissolution of marriage and have children under the age of 18 must complete the court's class entitled "Helping Children Succeed After Divorce" before their Final Decree of Divorce will be granted. Judges and Magistrates have the option of sending parties to this class on post-decree parenting issues.
For additional information or to sign up for the class, you may register online at Parent Education and Registering for Class. You may also call Parent Education Department at 937-225-4092.
Yes. The Court provides both settlement hearings and mediation services. For additional information, please call the Mediation Specialist at 937-225-4539.
The way to bring any of these problems to the attention of the Court is to file a Motion to Show Cause (PDF). You have three means to file a motion to show cause:
If you are the obligor (the person who is ordered to pay support) you are required by law to notify the Montgomery County Support Enforcement Agency at 937-225-4600 if you change employment. Also, if you are unemployed and have been placed under a seek work order, you must report any new employment immediately. Call the court's Compliance Office at 937-225-4782.
If you are the Obligor or Obligee and are required to carry health insurance, you need to contact the court's Compliance Office at 937-225-4782.
All child support checks are issued through:
Ohio Child Support Payment CentralP.O. Box 182372Columbus, Ohio 43218-2372
You may call 800-860-2555 24 hours a day to see if a payment has been posted to your account. You will need to enter your social security number.
No. Ohio law requires that all child support must be made through the child support system and that neither the court nor the parties can waive this requirement.
Yes. Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code Section 3109.05 (D), the court shall not authorize or permit the escrowing, impoundment, or withholding of any child support payment order under this section or any other section of the Revised Code because of a denial of or interference with a right of parenting time granted to a parent, or as a method of enforcing the specific provisions of any such order dealing with parenting time or visitation.
Upon the filing of a divorce or legal separation action, the court may issue a temporary order pursuant to Civ. R. 75(N) which may contain orders of temporary custody, child support, parenting time, and spousal support or such other orders as the court deems appropriate.
Either party in a pending divorce or legal separation case can indicate on their Affidavit of Financial Disclosure that he or she is requesting an order of temporary child and/or spousal support.
Or, either party can file a motion requesting the issuance of a temporary child and/or spousal support order. Please refer to Local Rule 4.14 (PDF)
You may seek the services of an attorney.
You may also apply for a Domestic Violence Civil Protection Order (DVCPO) or a Dating Violence Civil Protection Order. You must come in person to the court and speak with the Domestic Violence Public Coordinator. The office is located in the lobby of 301 W Third Street, Second Floor, Dayton, Ohio. Filing hours are Monday through Friday from 8:30 to 11:30 am or 1:15 to 3:30 pm. The filing process is generally two hours long and you must attend a hearing the day you file. You must have the name, address, and Date of Birth (at minimum) of the party you wish to file against.
There is no cost to file for a protection order in the state of Ohio.
Contact the police department or sheriff’s department where you reside. You will need to show law enforcement a certified copy of your divorce or dissolution decree, which states you are the residential parent and legal custodian of the child(ren). They can go with you to the other parent's home while you secure the return of your child. If this does not work, you will need to get legal assistance immediately.
View the Motions to Modify Parenting Time (PDF).
Any motion requesting a modification of the parenting time schedule shall set forth requested changes, and the reasons for the changes. The motion shall be accompanied by an Information for Parenting Proceeding Affidavit (PDF). Failure to file an Information for Parenting Proceeding Affidavit may result in dismissal of the motion
View the Motions To Reallocate Parental Rights And Responsibilities (Change Of Custody) (PDF).
Any motion requesting a reallocation of parental rights and responsibilities shall set forth the name and date of birth of the child(ren) for whom the motion is being made. The motion shall further state the reason(s) for the modification. All motions seeking to reallocate parental rights and responsibilities shall be accompanied by an Affidavit of Financial Disclosure, an Information for Parenting Proceeding Affidavit and Application for Child Support Services (unless already on file).
Failure to file an Information for Parenting Proceeding Affidavit may result in dismissal of the motion. The motion to reallocate parental rights and responsibilities shall be set for prehearing. The pre-hearing will be conducted for the same purposes as outlined in Mont. D.R. Rule 4.19 (PDF) and require the same preparation by counsel or self-represented party, e.g., disputed issues, discovery issues, appointment of guardian ad litem/psychologist, expected time needed for hearing.
Most people find that the best way to get a legal separation is to hire an attorney. However, you may file a legal separation as a self-represented party. A legal separation is started when a legal pleading called "complaint for legal separation" is filed with the Clerk of Courts Office, along with "instructions for service" and payment of the filing fee. A hearing date is scheduled after the defendant has been served properly with all the legal pleadings filed. A Final Decree of Legal Separation is not granted until the plaintiff (the person who files the complaint) has attended all of the hearings required by the court, and prepared all the necessary papers. At a minimum the person asking for the legal separation will have to appear at a hearing and give testimony under oath or affirmation, bring a witness who will also testify, and prepare and bring all the necessary paperwork to complete the case.
You can file a Motion for continuance if you have good cause that prevents you from attending court. Please refer to Local Rule 4.20 (PDF). Filing a Motion for Continuance does not mean that it will be granted. Continuances may be denied. You must follow-up with the court to see if the motion is granted. If the motion is denied the hearing will go forward as scheduled, even if you are not there. You will need to submit your motion and proposed entry of continuance to the court at least 3 business days prior to your hearing.
In compelling circumstances and with appropriate safeguards, the Court may permit "remote testimony" instead of personal appearance. A motion must be filed with the reasons preventing personal appearance. This motion must be filed well in advance of the hearing.
There are several options in establishing a child support order in Montgomery County:
Either party in a pending divorce or legal separation action may file a motion requesting Interim Attorney fees. Please refer to Local Rule 4.14 (PDF).
The parties must be divorced in Montgomery County in order to modify a parenting time schedule. In order to modify a parenting time schedule; there must be a motion filed with the Court. The motion must be set for hearing and served on the opposing party.
You may hire the attorney or your choice to file said motion or file self-represented. Refer to Local Rules 4.09 (H) and 4.41 (D) (PDF) for the required forms and content of said motion.
If filing self-represented; refer to the Forms section of the Local Rules. If you are not using an attorney; then your document must be submitted to the DR Compliance Office for review.
The parties must be divorced in Montgomery County in order to modify parental rights and responsibilities of a child or children. In order to reallocate parental rights and responsibilities of a child or children in Montgomery County; there must be a motion filed with the Court. The motion must be set for hearing and served on the opposing party.
You may hire the attorney or your choice to file said motion or file self-represented. Refer to Local Rules 4.09 (G) and 4.41 (C) (PDF) for the required forms and content of said motion.