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October 2016 Archives

What happens when a spouse doesn't answer the divorce petition?

In Minnesota, a divorce proceeding is commenced when the party asking for the divorce - called the petitioner - has a Summons and Petition served upon the other spouse, who is called the respondent. The respondent has 30 days to serve a formal answer to the petition, unless the petitioner agrees to an extension. In the absence of an agreed extension, if the respondent fails to serve an answer within 30 days he or she is deemed to be in default. This means the divorce will be uncontested and the court will grant the divorce and other relief the petitioner has requested.

Custody disputes and the child's best interests

When Minnesota parents decide to divorce, the realization that they may not see their children every day can be heartbreaking. For the children, the emotional distress can be serious and long-lasting. But if parents handle the situation in a mature manner, the transition to living in separate households can be made less upsetting for the kids.

Minnesota woman gets prison for violating parental rights

Violating a child custody order can have serious consequences, including contempt of court and loss of custody or visitation rights. But in extreme cases the consequences can include criminal charges and, if the parent is convicted, prison time. A recent high-profile case in Dakota County led to just such a result.

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