Frequently Asked Questions about Divorce in Minnesota
Divorce can be an incredibly upsetting experience and a whirlwind of stress and confusion for both the parties and their families. Educating yourself on the divorce process before you contact a divorce attorney in Minneapolis, MN is one way to reduce your anxiety level and begin to transition into this new stage of your life as seamlessly as possible.
Can I receive temporary spousal support while my divorce is pending?
According to Minnesota divorce law, a spouse can be granted temporary spousal maintenance while a divorce is pending in order to support themselves. The court may continue the temporary spousal maintenance after the divorce in certain situations. For example, the judge might order one party to pay spousal maintenance to the other party while they enroll in and complete necessary job training or education in the interest of obtaining employment that will enable them to support themselves in the future. This type of temporary spousal maintenance is sometimes referred to as rehabilitative maintenance.
It is important to understand that temporary doesn’t necessarily mean that the spousal maintenance will end. In effect, it only means when the specified maintenance period comes to an end, the party who has been receiving maintenance will take on the burden of showing the judge why their spousal maintenance should be extended. If you are planning to ask for temporary spousal maintenance or for your existing maintenance to be extended, it is important to be represented by a qualified divorce attorney in Minnesota for your best chance at success.
How long does a divorce take in Minneapolis, MN and how much will it cost?
Unlike many other states, Minnesota divorce law does not require a waiting period or a separation period before a divorce can be finalized. However, this in no way guarantees that your divorce will be handled quickly. If there are contested issues present such as child custody, even with an experienced Minnesota divorce lawyer on your side, alternative dispute resolution or a trial may be required. At that point, the process could easily take up to a year or longer.
When it comes to the potential cost of your divorce, the details will largely depend upon whether or not you and the other party are able to come to agreements on the issues at hand, including the division of your property, your finances, and custody of your children. The average total cost of a divorce in Minnesota is about $14,000, including the fees to be paid to your Minneapolis divorce attorney.
How is property divided in a Minnesota divorce?
Minnesota is not a community property state. What this means for you and your spouse is that your assets will most likely not be split in half. Instead, the judge will have the goal of making things fair by using an equitable distribution of your property. All of your marital property, which includes any pensions, retirement accounts, or employment benefits that have not been maintained separately, are subject to being divided in any way that the judge sees fit.
If you and your spouse happen to have very similar retirement accounts or employment benefits, there is certainly a possibility that the judge will decide to just award each of you your own accounts. On the other hand, if there is a glaring disparity in income or employment benefits between you and your spouse, then it is entirely possible that the judge may divide your property in a way that is intended to address that inequality. When you are facing the division of the assets you’ve worked so hard for in Minnesota, is imperative that you speak with a skilled divorce attorney.
Can’t I represent myself in my divorce? Why Do I need a Minneapolis Divorce Attorney?
If your car stopped running, you would take it to a mechanic. If you were sick, you would go to a doctor. If you need a divorce, you should go to an experienced divorce attorney in Minneapolis who can provide you with the legal advocacy you need. If you hire an attorney, he or she can help you to negotiate with your spouse and put the divorce on your own terms, rather than having your futures decided by a judge you’ve never met.
You can represent yourself in your divorce case, but you likely won’t get all to which you are entitled, and you may leave something important out. Maybe you overlooked an old retirement plan from your spouse’s previous employer. You may have been entitled to a portion of that plan, but once your divorce is finalized, it is too late. Representing yourself in your divorce is not worth the risk. In the end, you’ll be glad that you invested in a skilled and experienced divorce attorney.
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