Minnesota Study Claims “Divorce Risk” Continues To Increase

Despite a general belief that divorce rates have fallen over the last 30 years, a new study conducted by researchers at the University of Minnesota suggests that the rate has remained steady, while the “risk of divorce” has increased significantly. The study titled “Breaking Up is Hard to Count” explores divorce rates when adjusted for… Read more »

Can Physics Solve Child Custody Issues?

Parents, judges and family law practitioners have all worked towards developing the perfect child custody agreement, but could the ideal arrangement be solved through physics? That is the question physicist Andres Gomberoff attempted to tackle when trying to find the optimal solution that would allow him to spend the most time with his children and… Read more »

How Redbox Can Help Cut Divorce Rates

A new theory out of the University of Rochester suggests that couples can actually lower their likelihood of divorce by heading over to the nearest Redbox. Ronald Rogge, associate professor of clinical psychology and co-author of the study, wanted to learn how couples could improve their relationship through activity and communication. He decided to see… Read more »

3 Helpful Post-Divorce Apps

Technology continues to work its way into our everyday lives, and in doing so it’s no wonder that electronic communications are commonly referenced in the court of law. Email and other electronic communications simplify our life and make it easier for people to stay in touch with their attorney, and as smartphone ownership continues to… Read more »

Top 5 Ways to Cut Costs During a Divorce

Some people try to “go it alone” and try their hand at drafting their own divorce documents. In Minnesota, there are forms online and at the courthouse that allow people to act as their own attorney and fill out the form to be processed without any legal representation. Most of the litigants in divorce court… Read more »

Shared Parenting Rulings on the Rise in the US

An increasing amount of states are shifting towards a shared parenting presumption in family law cases, as proponents believe children are better served if they can spend equal time with both parents. “The best interest of the child or children trump the interests of the filing parent,” said Tom Barnett, the executive director of the… Read more »

Minnesota Couple Uses Craigslist to Adopt Son

A Minnesota couple looking to adopt used Craigslist to add another member to their family. After struggling for years to conceive, Tracey and Dan Citron posted an advertisement on Craigslist, a popular area-based marketplace website.  Tammy Nelson, an expecting mother, responded to their ad, and now the Citron’s have a son named Ben. There are… Read more »

Inactive Status Allows Minnesota Couples To Reconsider Divorce

No two divorces are the same. Some are amicable, while others are a little testier. Sometimes a person files for divorce after months of evaluation, other times it occurs in a quick moment of clarity.  However a couple comes to the decision to file for divorce is up to them, but sometimes the partners begin… Read more »

The Worst Piece of Divorce Advice

A recent Huffington Post article outlined the top 11 worst pieces of marriage advice. One piece of advice in particular relates to divorce as well. That piece of “bad advice” is that “you can always get divorced.” Minnesota: No-Fault State Minnesota is a no-fault state, which means neither party needs to have a reason to… Read more »

Getting the Most Out of Your Family Law Retainer

Going through a divorce or child custody issue can be tough, but it doesn’t have to be hard on your wallet. Attorneys typically ask for a retainer fee before a case begins, and they return anything left over after the case is settled. Sometimes clients get a large portion back; in other cases, they are… Read more »

Parents Often Overlook Impact Divorce Has On Children

A new study suggests that many divorcing parents overlook the effects separation has on children, which means parents might unintentionally be making the split harder than it needs to be on their kids. Separate studies conclude that the elements of a divorce are viewed differently from the eyes of a child. According to researchers: Children… Read more »

Drinking Habits Impact Divorce Likelihood

A new study out of the University of Buffalo found that couples who have similar drinking habits are less likely to get a divorce than a pair who have disproportion consumption habits.  For their study, researchers tracked newlyweds over a nine-year period. They found: Couples who have similar drinking habits sought a divorce 30 percent… Read more »

Dealing With Divorce During The Holidays

For some, holidays can be a great time to celebrate the season with friends and family, but for others, it can be a very stressful time of year. If your relationship is on the rocks heading into the holidays, the extra stress could push you over the edge. Family Law Attorney Katie Lammers says she… Read more »

Divorce Likelihood Decreases As Number of Siblings Rises

Research suggests that the more brothers and sisters a person has, the less likely they are to go through a divorce. Based on data encompassing over 57,000 adults between 1972 and 2012, researchers found that each additional sibling a person has (up to seven) decreased their likelihood of divorce by two percent. “There are a… Read more »

Child Custody Do’s and Don’ts During The Holidays

Getting through the holidays can be stressful enough without having to juggle parenting time with an ex.  Small disagreements can spiral out of control as emotions run high this time of year. Below, Family Law Attorney Amanda Crain shares some do’s and don’t’s for managing child custody issues during the holidays. DO: Review your current… Read more »

Are Child Support Payments Mandatory?

Some people mistakenly believe that if they have joint custody or equal parenting time that automatically means child support does not exchange hands. In 2007, Minnesota changed the way child support was calculated. Now, both parents’ incomes, the amount of time each parent spends with the child, and the cost of medical and dental premiums and… Read more »

Study Shows Divorce May Be Harder on Men

New findings reported in Journal of Men’s Health found that men may be at greater risk to suffer harmful health effects following a divorce. The peer-reviewed publication suggests that men are at a higher risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, and stroke than their married counterparts, and they are 39 percent more likely to… Read more »

Divorce Likelihood Increases if Friends or Family Members Are Divorced

A new study by researchers at Brown University suggests that, similar to the flu, divorce may be contagious if you are exposed to it on frequent basis. Rose McDermott was the lead researcher on a decades-long study that analyzed marriage, divorce, and remarriage patterns among thousands of New England residents. McDermott and colleagues analyzed data… Read more »

A Collaborative Approach to Divorce

Issues like asset division and child visitation rights can bog down divorce proceedings, lengthening a process that neither party wants to drag on, but a fresh approach to divorce mediation may help speed up the process and leave couples on better terms. Collaborative divorce is one of the latest attempts to make the separation process… Read more »

Men More Likely to Look Through Partner’s Phone

A new study out of the UK found that men are nearly twice as likely as women to look through their significant other’s text messages and call log without their knowledge. The study was conducted by the UK-based cell phone outlet Mobile Phone Checker, which surveyed over 2,000 adults currently in a relationship. The study… Read more »

Gray Divorce Becoming More Common for Older Couples

According to the Census Bureau, five times as many Americans over the age of 50 are divorced than they were only 50 years ago. Census data revealed that only 2.8 percent of Americans over the age of 50 were divorced in 1961, but that number has steadily risen over the last few decades. That number… Read more »

Parents Could Lose Custody of Child Over Failure to Treat

A custody battle between an Ohio family and a hospital has sparked a national debate over who should have the final say in providing lifesaving treatment to minors. The case at hand involves an Amish family that decided to take their 10-year-old daughter off of a chemotherapy regimen designed to treat her leukemia diagnosis because… Read more »

Couple Battling Through 10-Year Divorce

Most people who have to go through a divorce hope the process goes as smoothly and quickly as possible, but that’s the exact opposite of what’s going on in a courtroom in Connecticut. Although the divorce has gone through, David Zilkha and his ex-wife Karen Kaiser have been embattled in a 10-year tussle over stipulations… Read more »

The Benefits of Settling

When there is a contested issue in a family law case, there are generally two ways that the issue will be resolved: either the judge will make a decision on the contested issue, or the parties will settle the issue themselves. There are many benefits to settling a matter, and even in a case where… Read more »

Summer Months Put Strain on Relationships

As we noted in a blog post earlier this week, the back-to-school season can be hectic for divorced parents, but a new study shows that it’s the summer months that can lead couples to split. The report outlines three main factors that could increase the likelihood of a divorce, including: Increased pressure of balancing work… Read more »

5 Back to School Tips for Divorced Parents

School is back in session, and many parents are breathing a sigh of relief now that their children have returned to the classroom. Caring for children can be especially difficult in the summer if the child is too young to be on their own while the parents are at work, but for divorced parents, the… Read more »

Couples Say Cost of Splitting is Top Concern in a Divorce

A new study by Avvo revealed that the cost of splitting up is the top concern among divorcing couples. The poll asked 890 individuals and 447 attorneys to evaluate the top concerns of going through a divorce. Some of the survey findings were: 58 percent of respondents without children listed the cost of a divorce… Read more »

Free Attorney Resources in Minnesota

Potential clients looking for legal representation may sometimes pursue a pro-bono (no cost) or reduced fee attorney.  Typically, reduced-fee or free legal services are only available for those who have low incomes. Not all private law firms provide pro-bono or reduced fee representation, and those that do provide these services will do them on a… Read more »

Divorce Has Greater Impact on Young Children

A new study published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin revealed that children of divorce might develop a more insecure relationship with their parents if the divorce occurs at a young age. Two graduate students at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign pioneered the study, and its goal was to determine how the timing of… Read more »

Americans Becoming Less Tolerant of Cheating Partners

A recent Gallup roll found that 91 percent of American adults believe adultery is wrong, a big jump from 40 years ago, when only 70 percent of people believed extramarital affairs were “always wrong”. Americans have shown that they are willing to accept some societal trends once considered taboo, but we continue to have an… Read more »

Study Highlights Reasons Why Couples Seek a Divorce

A study by Co-operative Legal Services found that poor lifestyle and financial planning were two main reasons that couples sought a divorce. The study polled both married and divorced couples in hopes of pinpointing the biggest factors that lead to marital dissatisfaction and divorce. Marital Dissatisfaction Simply having an in-depth discussion about important family matters… Read more »

Relationships that Begin Online Less Likely to End in Divorce

A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that more than one-third of American marriages began with an online relationship, and those marriages were less likely to end in divorce than relationships that began in person. Although the party funding the study (eHarmony) had a vested interest in the… Read more »

Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) Struck Down by Supreme Court

The decision is out on United States v. Windsor, and the United States Supreme Court, by a 5-4 vote, has decided that The Defense of Marriage Act, the law barring the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages legalized by the states, is unconstitutional. The basic facts of United States v. Windsor are that Plaintiff Edie… Read more »

Supreme Court to Issue Landmark Gay Rights Ruling Tuesday

The Supreme Court is expected to announce a ruling on Tuesday that could greatly expand benefits to same-sex couples in the United States. Similar to when we documented the legalization of gay marriage in Minnesota, the court ruling will be felt across the nation. The case at hand is Windsor v. United States, which challenges… Read more »

Couples should be Wary of Online Divorce Programs

You probably know at least one couple that met online, but do you know any couples that got their divorce online?  It may sound strange, but a new program called Wevorce is attempting to corner the divorce market by offering a simplified online divorce solution that is cheaper than the in-person process. According to the… Read more »

Could Minnesota End Permanent Alimony?

During a divorce, one of the issues the court examines is the ability of each party to earn a living on their own.  In order to ensure both parties are financially stable after a divorce, the court will award spousal maintenance payments. Spousal maintenance, formerly known as alimony, is a regular payment made by the… Read more »

Family Law Impacts of the Same-Sex Marriage in Minnesota

The legalization of same sex marriage in Minnesota has been a hot topic around the state and on this blog over the past few days.  We’ve talked about the celebration surrounding the passage of the bill, and we’ve looked at a history of gay marriage in the United States.  Today, we’ll explore the legal impacts… Read more »

A History of Same-Sex Marriage in the United States

May 14th, 2013 will forever be remembered as the day Minnesota became just the 12th state to legalize same-sex marriage.  Although the law won’t go into effect until August 1, the bill’s passage means many new changes are on the horizon for gay couples.  In recognition of the bill, we decided to make a timeline… Read more »

Minnesota Will Legalize Gay Marriage Tuesday

Minnesota will become just the 12th state in the nation to allow same-sex marriages when Governor Mark Dayton signs the bill Tuesday. Supporters of the bill gathered at the capital Monday to celebrate the vote making its way through the Senate, and they once again lined the steps on Tuesday to commemorate the expected signing… Read more »

Unique Advertising Hopes to Prevent Child Abuse in Spain

An advertising campaign in Spain is taking a unique approach to protect kids who are victims of child abuse; by targeting them at their level.  Literally. The campaign was started by an organization called the Aid to Children and Adolescents at Risk Foundation, and their advertisements display different messages depending on what angle you view… Read more »

5 Tips for Communicating During a Divorce

We’ve written about effective communicative technologies during a divorce on this blog before, but many people are unaware of how common it is for electronic correspondences to make their way into the court room.  A recent study by the American Association of Matrimonial Lawyers found that some sort of social media evidence was used in… Read more »

Minimum Parenting Time Rules Unlikely to Change in Minnesota in 2013

Family law legislation like the Family Reunification Act or the adoptive placement bill have been making waves in 2013, but one bill that will not be voted on this year surrounds how much minimum parenting time each parent receives after a divorce. Last year, Governor Mark Dayton shot down a bill that would have increased… Read more »

How Much Does A Prenup Cost?

A prenup (also known as an ante-nuptial agreement, premarital agreement, or prenuptial agreement) can be relatively inexpensive or very expensive depending on the issues and property involved. A prenuptial agreement is a contract that parties sign prior to marriage that triggers in the event that the parties are divorced.  If parties have a lot of… Read more »

Minnesota Bill May Force Divorcing Couples to take Parenting Classes

Minnesota legislatures are considering upgrading a current bill that would make parenting classes mandatory for all divorcing couples with children. Under the current system, only couples going through a contested divorce are required to take classes, but oftentimes they can be avoided if the parties provide certain paperwork. The bill has support from both Democrats… Read more »

6 Steps for Throwing Your Friend a Great Divorce Shower

You’ve probably heard of wedding showers and baby showers, but you may not have heard of a divorce shower before.  Divorce showers are becoming a popular way to celebrate the freedoms that come with being newly divorced.  Others use it as a way to cheer up a friend if they are down in the dumps… Read more »

6 Ways to Prepare Yourself for Living Alone after a Divorce

For many people going through a divorce, the prospect of moving out and living alone can be scary.  Although people cope in different ways, there are certain things you can do to make the adjustment easier.  Below, we look at six things you can do to simplify the process. 1)  Change the scenery – Regardless… Read more »

New Minnesota Bill Would Provide Adoptive Families with More Funding

A new Minnesota bill is attempting to help increase adoption rates in Minnesota by providing larger subsidies for families who choose to adopt. Adoption advocates say the state’s adoption rate currently stands as the second lowest rate in the nation due in large part to the lack of financial assistance that is provided to adoptive… Read more »