This Note dives into the world of cryptocurrency and family law in Ohio. With its current popularity and dramatic fluctuations, cryptocurrency has created a new legal issue in the family law practice. Specifically, this Note focuses on the concealability of Bitcoin and how that influences division of property, spousal support, and child support in Ohio divorce proceedings and settlements. To tackle this issue, this Note begins with the history of Bitcoin, its value since the beginning, as well as the reason for its fluctuations. This Note also looks into what makes Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency forms so concealable. This Note then analyzes the current family law in Ohio, using relevant Ohio Revised Code sections as well as case law that presents examples of how standard assets are divided amongst spouses in a divorce. These statutes and cases are also used to analyze allocation of spousal and child support. This Note then looks to how Ohio has treated parties who conceal their assets in divorce proceedings with respect to division of property, spousal support, and child support. Lastly, I analyze how other states have treated Bitcoin in divorce settlements, as well as the approach countries like the United Kingdom and Canada treat cryptocurrency. This Note finds that cryptocurrency should be treated similarly to standard assets in divorce settlements, and that the Ohio Legislature should act quickly to propose amendments to relevant family law statutes to include cryptocurrency as a standard asset.
Concealing More Than Your Affairs: A Deep Dive into the World of Cryptocurrency and its Future Influence on Family Law in Ohio,
71 Clev. St. L. Rev.
available at https://engagedscholarship.csuohio.edu/clevstlrev/vol71/iss3/11