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Divorce Lawyer

Ending a marriage is never an easy decision. The emotional turmoil it creates for you, your spouse, and your children can be a heavy burden. Add on the complicated legal and financial matters, and divorce can begin to feel unbearable. 

You do not have to go through this alone. Whether you and your spouse are separating amicably or struggling to maintain basic civility, an experienced Minnesota divorce attorney can guide you, protecting your rights now and in the future. Complex laws about child custody and parenting time, division of marital assets, and spousal and child support are less overwhelming with the family law attorneys from Milavetz Injury Law, P.A., at your side. 

Don’t carry this burden alone. Let us help you navigate the complicated, emotional divorce process to help you get the best possible outcome for you and your children during this difficult time. Reach out to the dedicated Minneapolis divorce lawyers at Milavetz Injury Law, P.A., today. 

What Are the Grounds for Divorce in Minnesota?

Cheating spouses. Abusive relationships. Substance abuse. Serious matters such as these are clear grounds for divorce. But sometimes, a couple chooses to divorce for reasons that, while less severe, make leaving the marriage the right choice. 

In Minnesota, you and your spouse have the legal right to divorce if you believe your marriage cannot be repaired. Minnesota Statutes § 518.06 refers to these irreconcilable differences as “an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage relationship.” 

Minnesota is a no-fault divorce state, meaning that responsibility for the marriage failing does not need to be assigned or proven. Removing fault as a factor in divorce can make the process less stressful and contentious, significantly reducing the emotional burden on you and your spouse and potentially improving the potential for an amicable divorce. No-fault divorces are also generally processed more quickly and typically result in a less costly process. 

While courts won’t consider fault when determining grounds for divorce, fault can impact the following:

  • Custody: If your spouse is abusive or engages in activities that could cause the court to consider them an unfit parent, proof of fault could affect custody.
  • Division of assets: Minnesota law requires an even division of assets without consideration of fault. However, proof that one spouse attempted to hide, dispose of, or otherwise impact marital assets would influence the court’s division of assets.

The talented divorce lawyers at Milavetz Injury Law, P.A., can advise you of your legal options in Minneapolis and throughout Minnesota.

What Is the Difference Between Contested and Uncontested Divorce?

The difference between a contested divorce and an uncontested divorce hinges on agreement. If the couple agrees on the major issues regarding the dissolution of the marriage, the divorce is uncontested. A contested divorce is one in which the spouses have differing opinions about any significant issue. 

You may be headed toward a contested divorce if you and your spouse cannot agree on issues like designating personal versus marital property, division of assets or debt, spousal maintenance, child support, child custody, or parenting time. Even in uncontested divorces, legal complexities can arise, and legal counsel is often helpful.

Common Issues in Divorce

The most common issues couples face in a divorce are the following:

  • Custody: Custody disputes involve two determinations—legal and physical custody. Legal custody is the decision-making power regarding children’s education, religion, and health care. Physical custody covers the children’s residence. Minnesota courts must decide custody based on the child’s best interests, focusing on the child’s health, safety, and welfare.
  • Parenting time: This governs the allocation of the children’s time to each parent, also called a visitation schedule, including day-to-day schedules, vacations, and holidays. Minnesota’s Early Neutral Evaluation mediation process helps parents resolve custody and parenting time issues.
  • Child support: Child support obligations depend on the number of children, the parents’ income and expenses, and the children’s medical needs. The Minnesota Department of Human Services child support calculator estimates child support. An attorney can help ensure you receive appropriate alterations to these guidelines based on your family’s unique circumstances, including parenting time.
  • Spousal support: Courts may order these periodic payments, also called maintenance or alimony, to help one spouse maintain their pre-divorce standard of living. The length of time and amount of alimony paid can vary greatly on individual circumstances.
  • Insurance coverage: According to the Minnesota Attorney General, continuing insurance coverage is available to the spouse for at least 36 months and, depending on the type of insurance plan or policy terms, sometimes indefinitely.
  • Division of property: The couple must divide their assets, including their home, vehicles, personal property, and financial accounts. Minnesota law provides for the equitable division of marital property. An attorney can help confirm that assets were properly disclosed and appropriately categorized as marital versus personal.
  • Division of debt: Debt is categorized as personal versus marital, and the division becomes part of the divorce decree.
  • Modification: Alterations to a divorce agreement due to a change in one spouse’s marital status or financial situation. The court must approve any modifications.

How to File for Divorce in Minnesota

A Minneapolis divorce attorney can guide you through every step of your divorce. A divorce petition must be filed with the county clerk to officially initiate your case. The forms you use depend on whether the divorce is contested or uncontested and whether you have children. In Minnesota, filing first does not have any benefits or drawbacks. If your spouse files the divorce petition, you must file an official response within 30 days. 

Spouses may file requests for temporary orders regarding support, property, and custody until the divorce is finalized. Many divorces require negotiations and judicial rulings. Sometimes, a judge will hold a hearing to verify that you and your spouse understand the agreement and are satisfied with the terms. 

Every couple and family is unique. So is every divorce. From the first phone call to the final divorce decree, the length of time for divorce varies greatly. An uncontested divorce can typically resolve more quickly than a contested divorce. According to Black’s Law Dictionary, an uncontested divorce in Minnesota can take three to eight weeks.

Minnesota does not require you to live separately from your spouse before filing for divorce. However, Minnesota divorce law requires you or your spouse to live in Minnesota for at least 180 days before filing. 

To learn more about the filing process, schedule a free consultation with our Minneapolis divorce attorneys or call 763-373-9369.

Benefits of Hiring a Minneapolis Divorce Lawyer

Filing for divorce can be a complicated process with far-reaching effects on you and your children. An experienced Minnesota divorce attorney can guide you through the multi-step process and help you avoid pitfalls.

Get professional counsel: The legal and financial intricacies of divorce can be overwhelming not just for couples battling over custody or dealing with infidelity but also for couples with straightforward cases. An experienced, knowledgeable, skilled, and objective professional attorney provides wisdom and advice, helping you see beyond heavy emotions and frustrations to achieve the best results for you and your family.

Protect your rights: Engaging a Minnesota divorce attorney ensures that you have an experienced professional protecting your rights and confirming that you understand the ramifications of every decision and the impact of every step of the process. The experienced lawyers at Milavetz Injury Law, P.A., can help you receive a fair division of marital property and parenting time or custody.

Uncontested divorce interests: Consulting a Minneapolis divorce lawyer individually or with your spouse when your divorce is uncontested is just as important as engaging an attorney for a contentious divorce.  An attorney will pursue adherence to Minnesota law, understanding of current and future effects of the agreement, and protection of your rights regarding the division of assets and debts, home ownership, custody, and parenting time.

Regardless of the nature of your divorce, our attorneys will fight to get you the terms you need. Our firm will handle your case discreetly and diligently to protect your future.

Contact a Minneapolis Divorce Lawyer

At Milavetz Law, P.A., we understand the emotional impact of divorce. Our compassionate family law attorneys have extensive experience protecting our clients while helping them preserve important relationships. Even in the most amicable cases, divorce is complicated. Barbara Nilva Nevin and all of our experienced divorce lawyers seek equitable solutions that are fair and reasonable to you, your spouse, and your children. 

Divorce FAQs

How Much Does a Divorce Lawyer Cost in Minnesota?

The cost of a divorce attorney in Minnesota depends on the divorce’s complexity. The experience of the attorney handling the case plays a factor as well. If the divorce is simple and uncontested, you won’t have to go through mediation or trial and can expect to pay far less than a contested divorce.

How Much Does It Cost to File for Divorce in Minnesota?

The cost of filing for a divorce in Minnesota depends on your county. The minimum cost per statute is $315, and counties may charge additional fees. If you have limited financial resources, you may qualify for a fee waiver, which requires your income to be at or below 125 percent of the federal poverty level. 

How Much Does an Uncontested Divorce Cost in Minnesota?

Uncontested divorces are the most inexpensive type of divorce. On average, uncontested divorces cost around $4,100. If you are not using the services of a lawyer, then you won’t have to worry about paying the lawyer’s fees. However, you may risk losing the resources you are entitled to.

Can You Appeal a Divorce Ruling?

You can appeal a divorce ruling. Typically, you must file an appeal within 60 days of the judgment or order. The attorneys at Milavetz Injury Law, P.A., can offer guidance regarding the likelihood of a successful appeal. 

What Is the Difference Between Legal Separation and Divorce?

According to Minnesota Statutes § 518.06, a court may grant a legal separation if necessary. However, a legal separation does not terminate a marriage. A divorce, legally referred to as a dissolution of marriage, is granted by the court if it determines a marriage cannot be repaired. 

What Are Grandparents' Rights in Minnesota?

Minnesota grandparents’ rights laws give the courts broad discretion to determine visitation access for grandparents. Grandparents in Minnesota may have visitation rights depending on parental and custody arrangements. If a court determines that a child would be safer with their grandparents than with either parent, the court may grant the grandparents custody. 

Grandparents concerned about their grandchildren’s safety or visitation rights can consult a Minnesota family law attorney to help them understand their rights. 

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305 North 5th Avenue, Suite 300
Minneapolis, MN 55401
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Client Reviews

Content Reviewed by:

Barbara Nilva Nevin