How Long Does a Divorce Take in Minnesota?

How Long Does a Divorce Take in Minnesota?

September 1, 2023

By FairWell Family Law Mediation

There are several reasons why you may want to get a divorce, but how long does a divorce take? This is the timeline you can expect.

Studies show that Minnesota’s divorce rate is 10.2%. Understanding the divorce process and how long it takes is essential if you and your spouse have reached this point.

Has your marriage reached a point where reconciliation is no longer possible? If so, you may be thinking about divorce.

One of the most common questions during this emotional and challenging period is, “How long does a divorce take?” The answer to this question can vary depending on several factors. Here, you can learn what these factors are. You can also find tips to help expedite the divorce process.

Divorce in Minnesota

Before delving into the timeframes of getting a divorce in Minnesota, it’s important to understand the legal process. In short, Minnesota is considered a “no-fault” divorce state. This means that neither spouse is required to establish fault or blame for the reason behind the divorce.

Instead, Minnesota’s only requirement for a divorce is an “irretrievable breakdown” of the marriage. Under this regulation, at least one spouse must assert that the marriage cannot be saved.

The next step is to initiate the divorce process. However, to be eligible for this, there are some requirements. Some of these requirements include the following:

State Residency

To file for divorce, one spouse must be a state resident. Not only this, but they must have held residency for a minimum of 180 days. Only then can they file the divorce petition.

Country Residency

The filing party must also reside in the county where the divorce is filed. They must have resided there for at least 30 days before filing the divorce petition.

Divorce Laws in Minnesota

The divorce laws in Minnesota play a significant role in determining how long the divorce process will take. The state’s laws outline specific procedures and waiting periods that must be followed.

A divorce is initiated by filing a petition in the district court where one of the spouses resides. After the filing, the other spouse is served with the divorce papers.

The response must be filed within a specific timeframe. This is usually 30 days.

Following the initial filing, the court may grant temporary orders regarding the following while the divorce is pending:

  • Child custody
  • Visitation
  • Spousal support
  • Use of marital property

These temporary orders can impact the overall duration of the divorce process. That is because they may need to be modified or extended during the proceedings.

How to Get a Divorce in Minnesota

Once the divorce papers are served and the initial response is filed, the discovery phase begins. This phase involves gathering information and evidence. Some of the information needed includes the following:

  • Financial documents
  • Property valuations
  • Child custody evaluations

The duration of the discovery phase can vary significantly. It all depends on the level of cooperation between the parties and the assets’ complexity.

You should seek legal representation to help with the divorce process. An attorney can provide advice and guidance. They can also help expedite the process in some cases.

Factors Affecting the Divorce Timeline

Several factors can influence how long the divorce process takes in Minnesota. Some of the key factors include:

Type of Divorce

In Minnesota, divorces can be either contested or uncontested. An uncontested divorce typically takes less time than a contested divorce. This is because both parties agree on all the terms.

With a contested divorce, this is not the case. Usually, there are disputes over issues such as child custody, spousal support, and property division.

Court Caseload

The workload of the court can also impact the timeline. Courts with heavy caseloads may experience delays. This can lead to a longer wait time for divorce hearings and finalization.

Mediation and Settlement

Parties willing to negotiate and reach a settlement through mediation can significantly expedite divorce. On the other hand, contentious litigation can prolong proceedings.

Tips to Reduce How Long It Takes to Get a Divorce in Minnesota

Reducing the time it takes to get a divorce in Minnesota requires proactive steps. You must also be willing to cooperate with your spouse. Here are some essential strategies to expedite your divorce proceedings:

Seek Mediation

Choose mediation to resolve disputes amicably. A neutral third-party mediator can facilitate open communication.

This allows you and your spouse to reach mutually agreeable solutions. Resolving matters through mediation can significantly speed up the divorce process.

Be Organized

Gather all necessary documents beforehand. Being organized and well-prepared will enable you and your attorney to efficiently complete paperwork. It will also be possible to respond to court requests promptly.

Be Willing to Compromise

A contentious divorce can drag on for months or even years. Demonstrate a willingness to compromise and be open to negotiation. Focus on achieving a fair and equitable resolution rather than battling over every detail.

File Accurate Documents

Carefully review all documents before filing to avoid errors and unnecessary delays. Ensure that your divorce papers are complete and accurate. This will help prevent rejections or requests for additional information.

Adopting these strategies and maintaining open communication with your spouse can help reduce the time it takes to get a divorce. You can also move forward with your life more efficiently.

Finding Out the Answer: How Long Does a Divorce Take?

If you were wondering, “How long does a divorce take?”, the answer is not simple. Various factors influence the length of time it takes to get a divorce in Minnesota.

Understanding the divorce process can lead to a smoother and more expeditious divorce process.

Few divorces are easy. However, knowing the laws and processes can help you take smart steps. In some cases, your divorce may be finalized sooner than you hoped.

Are you interested in handling your family law matter quickly and without conflict? If so, we offer mediation services to help you with this goal. If you need help or information, contact us today.


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