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Tips to Help Your Child Get Through a Divorce

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By Barbara Nevin 

Having been a family law attorney for over 35 years, I am often asked what co-parents can do to make a divorce easier for children. Most parents love their children and want what is best for them. Some cooperation from both parents may often help their children to adjust to their new situation. Children thrive when their parents are cooperative. Here are a few tips that I have learned over the years.

3 things you should know about child custody in Minnesota

There's no way around it: Child custody cases are stressful. The big unknowns that lie ahead can cause you countless sleepless nights. While life will never look the same as it once does, you can have hope for a more settled future once you get through this difficult transition time.

One way to calm your worries is to clear up common myths about custody - and to have a more realistic understanding of what to expect. Here are three things you should about the custody process.

Are you in debt after the holidays?

By Barbara Nevin

A case, from the Ghosts of Christmas Holidays Past, may be helpful!

It was Christmas in 1993. Bill Clinton was president, and Beanie Babies were introduced to the public. During that year Sears Roebuck and Company decided to be "Scrooge Like" and took "exception" to the discharge of collector Barbie Dolls a mother paid for on her Sears's credit card. She also purchased Barbie and Ken clothes, Barbie's case, and Barbie's armoire. This unfortunate purchase happened next door to us, in the State of Wisconsin, in the case of Sears, Roebuck and Company, v. Bruce A. Johannsen and Terri L. Johannsen, Bankruptcy case number, 92-13915-7, Adv. Case No. A93-1039-7. The total of all of their toy purchases by the Johanssens amounted to $1110.71.

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What we can learn from last year's spike in pedestrian deaths

2016 was a rough year for pedestrians. More pedestrians were killed than any other year in the past quarter-century, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

Seniors age 65 and older are at greater risk of getting struck by cars. So, too, are children. Many of these accidents occur in crosswalks, where pedestrians have the right-of-way.

Surprisingly, even though people get struck by cars far more often in crowded downtown centers, nearly twice as many fatalities happen in the suburbs. Wider roads, faster speeds and fewer traffic controls might contribute to higher death rates.

Defective, dangerous or both? Know your rights when products malfunction

From Hatchimals to hoverboards, some popular holiday gifts are becoming the subject of lawsuits.

A Minnesota family just announced they are suing the manufacturer of a hoverboard that caught fire and led to the death of four family dogs last summer. Meanwhile, amid widespread complaints of Hatchimals that don't hatch, at least one parent has threatened to sue the manufacturers of the popular new toy, according to Business Insider.

Black ice: How to drive safely in subzero temps

It's one of the most dangerous times of year for Minnesota drivers. When temperatures plummet for days on end, the potential for black ice increases exponentially. This nearly invisible hazard contributes to deadly accidents every year. In fact, across the country, more than 100,000 people are injured each year due to winter weather conditions.

What exactly is black ice?

Put simply, it's a thin, transparent layer of ice that commonly appears in below-freezing temperatures. Black ice forms when the moisture from vehicle exhaust, warmed by friction from the tires, condenses and freezes on the pavement. It's especially common in dry conditions when temperatures dip the lowest around dawn and late evening.

Thinking about bankruptcy due to credit card debt?

It's that time of year: The season of generosity and warmth, but also the season of spending. With the holidays just around the corner, millions of Americans will take a hit on their pocketbooks and bank accounts. Come January, it may be time to rethink your finances.

'Tis the season for debt

Credit card debt is a leading cause of consumer bankruptcy. These companies make it easy for spending to spiral out of control. Then, they hit you with sky-high interest rates that can make it impossible to get back on top.

Record drunk driving case: $15 million verdict against driver and bars that served him

Drunk driving takes a toll that no amount of money can fix - especially in a case that left one child dead and another paralyzed.

Two years ago, a drunk driver went the wrong way on highway 14 near Rochester, slamming head-on into another vehicle. That driver survived, but the victims weren't so lucky. A 9-year-old passenger was killed, and his 7-year-old cousin paralyzed.

Last month, in one of the largest civil verdicts in Olmstead County, a judge awarded the victims $15 million. Half will come from the drunk driver and half from the three bars that negligently served him alcohol when he was already drunk.

GRANDPARENT RIGHTS, A NEW CONCERN FOR BABY BOOMERS AND THEIR GRANDCHILDREN

As my generation, "the baby boomers" ages, we are proud to see our children marry, and we relish the prospect of having grandchildren. We have eaten sensibly, exercised, and remain active. We have contributed to 401 K funds in order to enjoy retirement, and we look forward to spending time with our grandchildren! Many of us have fantasized about taking our grandchildren to Disneyworld, or Yellowstone. Sadly, not every marital situation is forever. What do we do if our children separate from their spouses down the road? Do we have rights to visit our grandchildren if our worst fears materialize and our children divorce, or even worse, we outlive the child who was the parent of our grandchildren.

Family Court matters, including grandparent rights, are usually decided in State Courts. However, the United States Supreme Court, surprisingly became involved in this heart wrenching situation, and their ruling has given us some guidance. A majority of the Justices opined that any visitation granted to grandparents, cannot interfere with the parent child -relationship. The United States Supreme Court made it abundantly clear, in the case of Troxel v. Grandville, 530 U.S. 57 (2000 ), that fit parents, are presumed to act in their children's best interest. This is true, even when parents cut their children off from contact with other family members.

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GRANDPARENT RIGHTS, A NEW CONCERN FOR BABY BOOMERS AND THEIR GRANDCHILDREN

As my generation, "the baby boomers" ages, we are proud to see our children marry, and we relish the prospect of having grandchildren. We have eaten sensibly, exercised, and remain active. We have contributed to 401 K funds in order to enjoy retirement, and we look forward to spending time with our grandchildren! Many of us have fantasized about taking our grandchildren to Disneyworld, or Yellowstone. Sadly, not every marital situation is forever. What do we do if our children separate from their spouses down the road? Do we have rights to visit our grandchildren if our worst fears materialize and our children divorce, or even worse, we outlive the child who was the parent of our grandchildren.

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