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When Is Probate Required?

Probate is the legal process of identifying the assets of someone who is recently deceased and distributing the remaining property.  Assets are distributed according to the deceased person’s wishes, as laid out in a Will, or in the absence of a Will, according to Minnesota law.  Minnesota law gives property to the closest relatives to the deceased, typically a spouse and children.  If the deceased has no spouse or children, then the property passes on to any living grandchildren, parents, brothers and sisters and on down the line to more distant relatives.  If there are no relatives located then the

2014-10-02T20:28:32-05:00October 2nd, 2014|Elder Law, Family Law, Probate Law|

Family Law: Preparing for mediation

Many times cases will be sent to mediation in order to see if the parties can work out a settlement between themselves.  Also, family law matters in Minnesota are frequently handled through mediation.  Because mediation requires the use of a third party to oversee the negotiations, both parties need to prepare themselves before going to the mediation and get to know the process thoroughly before the mediation begins. First, the parties should consider what they actually want to gain from the mediation.  Both parties should discuss their goals with their attorneys before heading into the mediation.  Before hiring a mediator

2014-10-02T19:14:04-05:00October 2nd, 2014|Divorce, Family Law|

Do I need a prenuptial agreement?

A prenuptial agreement is an agreement made between the two parties prior to marriage.  A prenuptial agreement lays out how money and other property that belongs separately to the spouses-to-be will be divided should the couple divorce in the future.  Many will complain that discussing a prenuptial agreement is not romantic.  While it may not be a romantic discussion to talk about a prenuptial agreement, it is a smart discussion to have if one or both parties are entering into a marriage with significant pre-marital assets.  This is of particular importance when the assets owned by one party are a

2014-10-02T19:12:32-05:00October 2nd, 2014|Divorce, Family Law|

Grandparents’ Rights

Divorce is much more common today than it was 50 years ago.  When spouses divorce, custody decisions regarding the children in their marriage are made, including who will be the primary caretaker and where the children will live.  What about the rights of the grandparents to visit with their grandchildren after the divorce?  What if the divorced or widowed spouse does not want to allow children to visit with the grandparents?  This question has been raised several times in Minnesota and so a law was passed under Minnesota Statute Section 518.1752 that addresses the issue.  Minnesota district courts will consider

2014-10-02T19:09:16-05:00October 2nd, 2014|Family Law|

Termination Of Parental Rights

Courts in Minnesota may need to consider whether or not to terminate the parental rights of one parent.  These parental rights may come up during divorce proceedings or other cases before the courts, including criminal cases.  When a decision is made to terminate the parental rights of one or both parents, this means that all rights of the parents, including custody, right to make decisions regarding the child’s upbringing and parenting time are permanently severed. A parent may choose to voluntarily terminate his or her own parental rights and may do so by simply giving written consent.  A judge must

2014-10-02T19:06:18-05:00October 2nd, 2014|Family Law|
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