Frequently Asked Questions About Family Law in Minnesota

Is there an advantage to filing for divorce in Minnesota before my spouse does?

Generally, no. However, the one advantage you will have is time. You will have time to plan, time to save money, time to consult with a divorce attorney, and time to collect documents, information, and establish a timeline for the divorce. If your spouse files first, you will have 30 days to respond, which may result in stress and anxiety.

Will the Minnesota family courts favor the mother over the father when determining custody arrangements?

The Minnesota family courts cannot be biased against either parent due to their gender. The facts of the child custody case will stand on its merit alone.

Can a parent who has physical custody of their children in Minnesota move them out of state?

Like most states, the Minnesota parent who has physical custody of their children must file a motion with the court to gain permission to move the children out of state, unless he or she can agree with the other parent outside the courtroom first. The parent seeking the move must show it is in the best interests of the child.

If my income increases/decreases, will my Minnesota child support obligation change as well?

Both increases or decreases in child support requests must be determined during a modification hearing. If the paying parent has a substantial increase or decrease in their income, the court may modify their child support payments.

If the paying parent is behind on child support in Minnesota, can the other parent refuse to allow visitation?

No. Lack of child support payment has no bearing on visitation rights in Minnesota. The two legal areas are mutually exclusive. Interfering with the right of the other parent to see the children may create legal trouble for the parent withholding visitation.

Heimerl & Lammers Client Specialist

Frequently Asked Questions About Personal Injury Law in Minnesota

How long do I have to file a Minnesota personal injury claim?

The statute of limitations, or the amount of time you have to file a personal injury claim, in Minnesota is two years from the date the injury occurred.

I am out of work because of my injuries. How can I afford to pay a personal injury attorney in Minnesota?

At Heimerl & Lammers, our personal injury attorneys in Minnesota do not charge any fees if we do not win your case. That means, even if you are out of work, we will represent you with no upfront costs or fees until your case is won, so you may concentrate on your physical recovery while we focus on your financial recovery.

How much is my Minnesota personal injury claim worth?

Your personal injury claim is unique and will be thoroughly assessed by our attorneys to determine each factor associated with your financial recovery requirements. Those factors may include economic damages like medical costs and lost wages; non-economic damages like pain and suffering; and punitive damages, which are designed to punish the liable party who caused your injuries.

Am I required to give a statement to the insurance company after being injured in a Minnesota car accident?

No. Insurance companies work tirelessly to obtain a statement from an injured party to minimize their payment liability by manipulating the conversation, or misleading the injury victim to say things like, “I am okay.” Do not speak with the insurance company without an experienced personal injury attorney by your side, so you do not jeopardize your ability to pursue a financial claim.

Should I return to work after being hurt in an accident in Minnesota?

That depends on the instructions provided by your team of physicians. If you are too hurt to return to work, but are worried about your lost income, we will include all current and future lost wages in our personal injury claim when you are unable to work because of your injuries. If your doctor allows you to return to work, they may request that your employer modify your duties until you have fully healed. It is important to follow all your physician’s instructions and attend all medical appointments or follow up care.

Frequently Asked Questions About Workers’ Compensation in Minnesota

Are all Minnesota employers required to carry workers’ compensation insurance coverage?

There are very few exceptions for employers who do not have to carry workers’ compensation insurance. Most Minnesota employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance coverage.

Can my employer fire me for filing a workers’ compensation claim in Minnesota?

No. It is unlawful to fire someone for filing a personal injury claim in Minnesota.

What type of coverage is included in Minnesota’s workers’ compensation benefits?

Workers’ compensation benefits in Minnesota may include medical care costs — including surgeries or psychological treatments — lost wages, compensation for the loss of use of a limb, and vocational rehabilitation. Each will be unique to the injured person’s needs.

Can I see my own physician after a work injury in Minnesota?

That depends. Your employer may dictate which physician or pharmacy you use, based on the coverage they carry, and it is important to follow the rules within their workers’ compensation coverage requirements. If there is no medical visit requirement, you may be able to visit your family physician to outline your medical care requirements.

Can I pursue workers’ compensation benefits without the help of a Minnesota attorney?

Yes. Although, most injury victims who are hurt at work find that consulting with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer provides a better opportunity to pursue the full extent of the benefits they deserve. Workers’ compensation attorneys may also file an appeal when an employee’s claim is denied.

Frequently Asked Questions About Employment Law in Minnesota

My Minnesota employer does not allow lunch breaks. Is that legal?

If an employee works eight or more consecutive hours, their employer must allow time to eat a meal. Refusing to do so is unlawful.

I work a lot of overtime in Minnesota but am never paid for it. Is that illegal?

Minnesota employers are required by law to pay one-and-one-half times your regular rate of pay for overtime hours worked. If you are working without pay, our skilled employment law attorneys in Minnesota want to discuss your case.

I am being discriminated against for my religion at work. Can I file a claim against my employer?

Your employer must provide a work environment free from racial, sexual, and religious harassment. When they fail to do so, you may have a discrimination claim.

Something illegal is happening in my workplace. Can I be fired for reporting it?

A person who reports a suspected violation of law to an employer or third-party agency may have legal protection under our Minnesota whistleblower laws.

I was passed over for a promotion for reporting harassment in my Minnesota office. Is that legal?

If you can produce the evidence necessary to prove you were passed over for a promotion, or were demoted outright, for reporting a harassing environment in your office, you may have a case against your employer. Our harassment attorneys in Minnesota will evaluate your claim during a free consultation.

Frequently Asked Questions About Estate Planning in Minnesota

What does traditional estate planning entail in Minnesota?

Traditional estate planning in Minnesota typically focuses on the accumulation, preservation, and distribution of financial assets and possessions, and helps protect material wealth from probate and minimizes taxes. Our Minnesota estate planning attorneys can help you understand how the process works, so you can protect your family’s future.

Does everyone in Minnesota need a will?

You are not required by law to have a Will in Minnesota. However, Wills are useful tools that provide the ability to control how your estate is divided, and can help expedite property division upon your death, so your family can benefit from your wishes sooner than later.

If I do not have a Will, will my property go to the state of Minnesota?

Contrary to popular belief, your assets and property will not go to the state of Minnesota upon your death if you do not have a Will in place. However, the state will make an educated guess regarding who is entitled to your property, with your spouse and children considered first, then your closest blood relatives. Without a Will, this process takes time and can be delayed for months or even years.

I created a Will online. Is it legally binding?

A Will is an important legal document, which should be specifically designed to reflect our Minnesota estate planning laws. Online forms are often generic, lacking the necessary wording and execution to ensure your wishes will be complied with after you pass away. Speaking with an experienced Minnesota estate planning attorney will give you the peace of mind you need to ensure your Will is legally binding and that your wishes are carried out accordingly.

Where should I keep my Will? Who should I tell about its location?

Your will should be kept in a safe place with other legal and estate planning documents. The location is completely up to you, and can include a safety deposit box, a file inside your home, or a designated third-party location. Choose a trusted personal representative, close friend, or relative with the location of the document. In Minnesota, the courts will accept Wills at no charge or for a nominal fee for safekeeping. You may request its return at any time.

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