FAQ’s — Divorce
If my spouse and I are both pursing an action in Minnesota, does it matter who files a divorce or custody action first?
No, it does not matter to the Court which party pursues a family law related action first. It does not matter who is served first. It does not matter who files the paperwork with the Court first.
Do I need to prove anything to get a divorce in Minnesota?
No, Minnesota is a no-fault divorce state. Meaning, a spouse does not need to prove that the other spouse conducted any wrongdoing, like an extramarital affair, abuse, etc. You do not need to prove that you and your spouse made efforts to work on the marriage with marriage counseling. The spouse obtaining the divorce needs to state to the Court that they believe the marriage is irretrievably broken, and that either you or your spouse have been a resident of Minnesota for at least 180 days prior to the commencement of the divorce proceedings.
How long do I need to be a Minnesota resident before I can obtain a Minnesota divorce?
In order to pursue a family law action in Minnesota, you or the other party must be a resident of Minnesota 180 days prior to the commencement of the action.
Can I change my last name through the divorce process?
Yes, a party may request that their name be changed during the divorce process, so long as it is not intended to defraud or mislead the Court. If you don’t want to change your name in the divorce, but then change your mind after the divorce is final, then you’ll have to petition the Court separately for a name change.