If you have a custody or visitation order from another state, and you now live in Ohio, the process for registering your order with the courts in the state of Ohio is actually relatively simple. Unfortunately, jurisdictions is an issue that can be complicated and sometimes difficult to understand. However, if the state that made the order had jurisdiction to make the order, then registering it in Ohio is pretty basic. Here is a link to a packet of forms which is a pretty good resource for registering a foreign decree in Ohio. You can white out or cross out the name of the county and change it to your county’s name. The filing fee might be different in your county as well, so you need to check that by either viewing your county’s website, or calling the clerk of court in your county.
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Registering your decree means that you have the right to have an Ohio police officer enforce your decree just as they would if it were made by a court in Ohio. It does not mean that jurisdiction has moved to Ohio and that Ohio courts can CHANGE the order. Ohio courts can only enforce the order. The other parent can contest registration of the order, but only on a very limited basis.
Before you file your paperwork to register your order in Ohio, you should review the law to make sure you have dotted all your i’s and crossed your t’s. To see the laws about child custody in Ohio and which state has jurisdiction, see Ohio Revised Code 3127.
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