Brand new this week, most of the forms on the Cuyahoga County Domestic Relations website are now interactive as fillable pdf forms. They can now be completed online by simply typing in relevant information and printing out the completed product. However, due to restrictions enbedded in the documents themselves, you will not be able to save the documents you create for your records. Nevertheless, this will be a huge benefit and time-saver for parties who want to proceed pro se and fill out their own paperwork for a divorce, a dissolution, child support, etc.
The Ohio State Bar Association is in the process of creating an online forms library using a program called HotDocs. This new service, which will be available for a fee to OSBA members, will automate the process of creating common forms for use in the following practice areas: appellate practice; business law; civil litigation; estate planning; trust and probate; family law; jury instructions; advance directives; real estate; and workers compensation. The fee will start at around $200 for solo attorneys. Since an OSBA committee is currently in the process of determining which forms to automate, and a vendor has already been selected to create them, it should not take too long.
Consumer may love LegalZoom, but it is facing a class action alleging that its process of creating wills, POA's, pleadings in domestic relations cases, and other documents constitutes the unauthorized practice of law. Click here to read an article about the case and link to the pleadings. According to the article, LegalZoom is run by a lawyer who was interviewed for an upcoming article in the ABA Journal.
The Ohio Supreme Court has translated 27 common forms used in general, domestic relations, juvenile and probate court cases into Spanish, Arabic, Mandarin, Russian, and Somali. A few of the key forms include those related to domestic violence and stalking. Click here to find the translated forms.
The Ohio Supreme Court is considering adopting uniform domestic relations forms for use in all Ohio courts In a concerted effort to make domestic relations practice in Ohio more seamless, improve access to the justice system, and help out DR courts. The Court is accepting comments on the proposed forms until February 16th, 2010. The proposed forms are limited at this time and include: long and short forms for an Affidavit of Income, Expenses and Financial Disclosure; an Affidavit of Property; a Parenting Proceeding Affidavit; a Health Insurance Affidavit; and a combined Motion and Affidavit for Temporary Parenting Orders, Support, Parenting Time Spousal Support without Oral Hearing. Click here to read the Court's Press Release.
It's not an anniversary celebration, but the Ohio State Bar Association has just announced that it has issued 5 new jury instructions to bring the total it provides through Casemaker to 100 jury instructions. The new jury instructions cover 1) unavailable witnesses, 2) money laundering, 3) a supplement to the instruction on witness credibility, 4) an alternative to the "mailbox rule," and 5) an alternative jury introduction. Items 4 and 5 have been referred to OJI and the Ohio Judicial Conference for comment.