Family Law Prof Blog

Editor: Margaret Ryznar
Indiana University
Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Friday, July 16, 2021

Error in Modifying Divorce Decree's Effect on Pension Division Order

From Court News Ohio:

When a domestic relations court improperly orders pension benefits to be divided in a way that is contrary to a prior divorce decree, that error does not make the court’s order void and unenforceable, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled today.

The Court stated that R.C. 3105.171(I) does not allow a court to divide retirement benefits in a way that modifies the divorce decree without the consent of both former spouses.

The Court explained that the Lake County Domestic Relations Court had the judicial power to modify the pension benefit granted to Julia Ostanek in the divorce decree. That the domestic relations court failed to comply with R.C. 3105.171(I), however, did not make the order void and not legally binding on the parties. In remanding the matter, the Court directed the Eleventh District to consider Gregory Ostanek’s argument that the failure of his ex-wife to notify him of her request for an order dividing the retirement benefits violated his due process rights and should invalidate the order.

Read more here.

https://lawprofessors.typepad.com/family_law/2021/07/error-in-modifying-divorce-decrees-effect-on-pension-division-order.html

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