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Excerpt: FAMILY COURT MATTER Answer and Counter-Petition in Response to Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Children DIV901 State ENG Rev 5/08 www.mncourts.gov/forms Page 1 of 24 IMPORTANT NOTICES STOP: THE LAW STATES THAT BEFORE YOU CAN BEGIN A DIVORCE IN MINNESOTA, EITHER (1) YOU OR YOUR SPOUSE (HUSBAND OR WIFE) MUST HAVE LIVED IN MINNESOTA FOR T
FAMILY COURT MATTER

Answer and Counter-Petition in Response to Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Children

DIV901

State

ENG

Rev 5/08

www.mncourts.gov/forms

Page 1 of 24

IMPORTANT NOTICES
STOP: THE LAW STATES THAT BEFORE YOU CAN BEGIN A DIVORCE IN MINNESOTA, EITHER (1) YOU OR YOUR SPOUSE (HUSBAND OR WIFE) MUST HAVE LIVED IN MINNESOTA FOR THE LAST SIX (6) MONTHS, OR (2) YOU OR YOUR SPOUSE MUST BE A MEMBER OF THE ARMED FORCES STATIONED IN MINNESOTA FOR THE LAST SIX (6) MONTHS. IF ONE OF YOU HAS NOT LIVED IN MINNESOTA FOR THE LAST SIX (6) MONTHS, STOP, YOU CANNOT GET A DIVORCE YET. YOU MUST WAIT UNTIL YOU HAVE LIVED IN MINNESOTA FOR AT LEAST SIX (6) MONTHS. STOP: YOU SHOULD USE THIS PACKET OF FORMS ONLY IF YOU AND THE OTHER PARTY HAVE AT LEAST ONE CHILD TOGETHER, OR THE WIFE IS PREGNANT, OR THE WIFE GAVE BIRTH TO A CHILD AT ANY TIME AFTER THE MARRIAGE AND THE CHILD IS NOT THE HUSBAND'S BIOLOGICAL CHILD. WARNING: YOU HAVE THIRTY (30) DAYS FROM THE DATE YOU WERE SERVED WITH THE PETITION FOR DISSOLUTION OF MARRIAGE IN WHICH TO RESPOND. IF YOU DO NOT RESPOND WITHIN THE THIRTY (30) DAY PERIOD, THE COURT MAY GIVE YOUR SPOUSE (HUSBAND OR WIFE) EVERYTHING HE OR SHE ASKED FOR IN THE PETITION. THE COURT EXPECTS EVERY PERSON WHO APPEARS IN COURT WITHOUT A LAWYER TO KNOW THE LAW. IF YOU ACT AS YOUR OWN LAWYER, YOU MUST DO WHAT A LAWYER WOULD DO. YOU SHOULD SEE A LAWYER IF YOU DON'T KNOW HOW TO ANSWER THE QUESTIONS ON THESE FORMS OR IF YOU THINK THE OTHER PARTY WILL HIRE A LAWYER. AS YOU FILL IN THE FORM(S) IN THIS PACKET, YOU MUST FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS INCLUDED WITH THIS PACKET. TYPE YOUR ANSWERS OR PRINT NEATLY USING DARK INK. IF YOU NEED MORE SPACE TO ANSWER A QUESTION, USE AN ADDITIONAL FULL SHEET OF PAPER. Helpful materials may be found at your public county law library. For a directory, see http://www.lawlibrary.state.mn.us/cllppubdir.rtf . For more information, contact your court administrator or call the Minnesota State Law Library at 651-296-2775.

DIV901

State

ENG

Rev 5/08

www.mncourts.gov/forms

Page 2 of 24

INSTRUCTIONS Step 1
Fill Out the Answer and Counter-Petition Form
This Dissolution of Marriage (divorce) proceeding started when you were served with a copy of the Summons and a copy of the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. You have thirty (30) days from the date you were handed the Summons and Petition in which to respond. If you do not respond within the thirty (30) day period, the Court may give your spouse everything he or she has asked for in the Petition. This packet includes the following forms: 1. Answer and Counter-Petition 2. Financial Affidavit 3. Form 11.1 Confidential Information Form 4. Form 11.2 Sealed Financial Source Documents 5. Affidavit of Personal Service 6. Affidavit of Service by Mail 7. Prehearing Statement To respond to the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, fill out the Answer and Counter-Petition form included in this packet. The Answer form is divided into three (3) parts. The first part of the form (Questions 1-4 on Page 1) are known as your Answer to the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and tells the court and your spouse whether you believe the information in the Petition is true or not true. The second part of the form (Questions 1-39 starting on Page 2) gives the court information about you, your spouse, your children (if any), your finances, and your property. The third part of the form (Questions 1-24 starting on Page 25) tells the court and your spouse what you are asking for from the Court. FILL IN THE TOP PART OF THE FORM NOTE: This information is known as "the caption" and will be the same on every form you fill out. The information to fill out the top part of the Answer and Counter-Petition form can be found on the top part of the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. Fill in the "Case No." as found at the top of the Petition, if provided. On the line marked "Name of Petitioner," write the full name of your spouse as found on the Petition. From now on, your spouse will be called Petitioner. On the line marked "Name of Respondent," write your full name. From now on, you will be called Respondent. ANSWER QUESTIONS 1 4 ON PAGE 1 OF THE FORM, WHICH ARE YOUR ANSWERS TO THE PETITION FOR DISSOLUTION OF MARRIAGE NOTE: The instructions which follow are numbered the same as the questions on the Answer and Counter-Petition form.

DIV901

State

ENG

Rev 5/08

www.mncourts.gov/forms

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For each of the following four questions, look at each paragraph numbered 1 through 39 in the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. 1. 2. 3. 4. If a paragraph is true, put the paragraph number(s) on the lines provided. If a paragraph is not true, put the paragraph number(s) on the lines provided. If a paragraph is partly true and partly not true, put the paragraph number(s) on the lines provided. If you don't know whether a paragraph is true or not true, put the paragraph number(s) on the lines provided.

ANSWER QUESTIONS 1 39 STARTING ON PAGE 2 OF THE FORM, WHICH GIVES THE COURT INFORMATION ABOUT YOU AND YOUR SPOUSE 1. Throughout this case, your spouse (husband or wife) will always be known as the Petitioner. Print your spouse's full name, street address, city, county, state, zip code, and date of birth. List all of your spouse's former or other names or write "none". Throughout this case, you will always be known as the Respondent. Print your full name, street address, city, county, state, zip code and date of birth. List all of your former or other names or write "none". Provide information about the date and location of your marriage. Check YES if your spouse has lived in Minnesota for the last six months. Otherwise, check NO. Check YES if you have lived in Minnesota for the last six months. Otherwise, check NO.

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3. 4.

STOP: The law states that before you can begin a divorce in Minnesota, either: (1) you or your spouse (husband or wife) must have lived in Minnesota for the last six months; or (2) you or your spouse must be a member of the armed forces stationed in Minnesota for the last six months. If neither you nor your spouse have lived in Minnesota for the last six months, you cannot file for a divorce yet. You must wait until one of you has lived in Minnesota for at least six months. If one of you has lived in Minnesota for the last six months, then go on to answer the rest of the questions. 5. Answer the questions about the military status of both you and your spouse. If either husband or wife is a member of the armed forces there are special procedures under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act. Contact an attorney. In Minnesota, a marriage can be dissolved even if only one of the parties states that the marriage relationship is over. You do not need to add any information in this section. Check YES if you are still living together; check NO if you are not. If NO, print the date you physically separated. If YES, describe why you are living together at this time. 8(a) Check YES if you or your spouse has already started another dissolution, legal separation or annulment proceeding in Minnesota or any other state. 8(b) check Yes if there is a child support or spousal maintenance case that was started involving you and your spouse or your joint children.

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7.

8.

DIV901

State

ENG

Rev 5/08

www.mncourts.gov/forms

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WARNING: If you or your spouse have already started a divorce or legal separation or annulment case in Minnesota or in any other state and it has not been dismissed, you CANNOT proceed with this divorce. You could either complete the other action, or you could have the other action dismissed and then start this divorce. 9. Check YES if there is an existing Order for Protection or an existing Harassment Restraining Order against the Petitioner or Respondent; complete this question and staple a copy of the order to the completed Answer and Counter-Petition. If your spouse attached a copy of the order to the Petition, you do not need to attach it to your Answer. Check NO if there is no Order. Check YES if there is an existing Juvenile Court case and fill in all information. Check NO if there is no existing case. (a) List each child under the age of 18 you and your spouse have together, including children born of you and your spouse before or during the marriage, and children adopted into your marriage. These children are called "joint children." Also include a child age 18 or 19, if the child is still in high school. Check who the child(ren) currently live(s) with. Answer whether all the children listed in (a) have lived in Minnesota for the past six months.

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(b)

12.

List any adult dependent joint children who are unable to live on their own because of a physical or mental condition. Answer the questions about pregnancy. Check YES only if the HUSBAND has any child(ren) under the age of 18 that were born prior to the marriage from a different marriage or relationship. These are called nonjoint children. List all minor children that were born prior to the marriage. (a) Check YES only if the WIFE has any child(ren) under the age of 18 that were born prior to the marriage from a different marriage or relationship. These are called nonjoint children. List all minor nonjoint children that were born prior to the marriage. (b) Check whether the Wife has given birth during the marriage to a child (or children) who is not a child of the Husband (including children who were born while the parties were separated). If YES, answer (i), (ii), (iii) and (iv). (i) List the name(s) and date of birth of the child(ren). (ii) Check whether there is a Court Order naming someone other then the Husband as the father of the child. If YES, you must attach a copy of the Order to the completed Petition. (iii) Check whether the Wife and Biological Father have signed Minnesota Recognition of Parentage. If YES, a copy of the Recognition of Parentage must be attached. If your spouse attached copies to the Petition, you do not need to attach copies to your Answer. Certified Copies of the Recognition of Parentage can be obtained by mail by completing and notarizing the required form provided by the Minnesota Department of Health. You can get the form from the Minnesota Department of Health website at: http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/chs/osr/ropform.pdf or you can call 651-201-5970 to request a copy of the form. The fee for a certified copy is $9.00 per copy. The completed form and fee should be mailed to:
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13. 14.

15.

DIV901

Minnesota Department of Health Recognition of Parentage Program Office of the State Registrar P. O. Box 64882 St Paul, MN 55164-0882

(iv)

Check whether the Husband has signed the "Husband's Non-Paternity Statement" for any of the children listed in (i). If YES, attach a copy. If NO, describe why not.

16.

Parenting Time is the time a parent spends with a joint child, regardless who has custody of the child. You must say if you want parenting time to be unsupervised, supervised, or reserved. If you think your child(ren) would not be safe alone with your spouse, you can ask the Court to make parenting time "supervised." You must explain at 16 a) and b) why supervision is needed, and who will do the supervising and pay any costs. The Court may order parenting time to take place at a parenting time center, or the Court may order a family member or someone from social services to supervise the parenting time. If you check "unsupervised" the parent can visit the child(ren) without anyone else watching. If you check "reserved", you are asking that the court give that parent NO parenting time. If you check "reserved" answer part (c) describing why "reserved" parenting time is best for the children. If parenting time is "reserved" either parent can ask the court to make a new order about parenting time in the future, by filing a motion with the court. This question asks about "Public assistance" paid by the State of Minnesota. Public Assistance means MFIP, Tribal TANF, General Assistance, Minnesota Care, Medical Assistance, or Child Care Assistance. Check YES or NO. If YES, write in the name of the county paying the assistance. Minnesota law requires the Petitioner to notify the public authority paying assistance that he/she is filing a divorce action. Use the form called "Notice to County Support and Collections" to notify the county of your divorce action. There are instructions with that form. Answer whether you, your spouse, or your joint children receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) from the federal government. This is an income supplement program based on need. To get it, you must be low income and over 65, blind or disabled. SSI is different from Social Security retirement or other benefits based on qualifying years of work. "School" includes high school, college, vo-tech, and night classes. Check YES or NO. If YES, answer (a) (c). This question is about your spouse's employment status. Provide the requested information about your spouse's employer. If your spouse is self-employed, list the business name and address. For purposes of setting child support, there is a presumption that both parents can work full-time. If your spouse is unemployed or works less than 40 hours/week, answer subparagraphs b) i. and ii. to explain why your spouse is not employed full-time and describe your spouse's past work experience. If you do not know the information, answer "unknown." This question asks for your spouse's monthly income. If you don't have any information about your spouse's income, check the first box. If you have information about your spouse's pay, but do not know if your spouse has other types of income, check the second box. If you know all of your spouse's sources of income, check the third box and complete the income
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DIV901

information. Minnesota law defines "income" a certain way for purposes of setting child support. When you enter income amounts, enter the "gross" amount, not the "net". Gross income is the amount received before taxes or other deductions are taken out. If your spouse has a job, the most accurate way to calculate gross monthly income is to multiply hourly wage by the number of hours your spouse works per week by 4.33. 4.33 is the average number of weeks in a month. Overtime pay is generally excluded from income, but may be included depending on the circumstances. Look at the Minnesota laws or consult a lawyer if you have questions about overtime pay or other categories of income. Public assistance benefits available to low-income people are not included in "income". Do not include MFIP, General Assistance, SSI or other public benefits as income. Look at each category of income and enter the amount your spouse receives per month (before taxes or deductions). Enter "zero" if your spouse does not have income of that type. If your spouse has a type of income not listed at #21, enter that income under "Other". When you have entered all monthly income amounts, total the numbers and enter that on the line "Total monthly income". The 3 final questions at #21 are important for calculating child support. 1. "Enter the amount of child support your spouse is court-ordered to pay for a nonjoint child(ren.)" Does your spouse pay child support for a child that is his/her legal child, but not your legal child? If yes, write in the amount your spouse is court ordered to pay each month. 2. Enter the amount of spousal maintenance your spouse is court-ordered to pay to you or to a former spouse. 3. Enter the amount of Social Security of Veteran's Benefits provided to a joint child because of your spouse's retirement, disability, or other eligibility. If a joint child of you and your spouse receives SS or VA benefits due to your spouse's eligibility, enter the monthly amount of the child's benefit here. Which parent receives the check on the child's behalf? Check the box for Petitioner if your spouse receives the check, and check the box for Respondent if the check goes to you on your child's behalf. 22. 23. Provide the requested information about living expenses for the family. Answer whether you and your spouse have a joint child with special needs and extraordinary medical expenses. If YES, provide the name of the child, describe the needs, and answer (b) and (c). This question is about your employment status. Provide the requested information about your employer and jobs. If you work less than full-time, explain why you are not working full- time and what your past work experience is at paragraph c) i. and ii. This question asks about your monthly income. Complete the questions. Complete the questions about child care costs necessary so that you or your spouse can work or attend school.

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25. 26.

DIV901

State

ENG

Rev 5/08

www.mncourts.gov/forms

Page 7 of 24

27.

Complete the questions about medical and dental insurance. The court needs to know what coverage you, your spouse and your joint children have now and what it costs. If the children do not have health coverage, the court needs to know if you or your spouse could purchase health coverage through your work (question 27 f.)

NOTE: If you, your spouse, or your child(ren) are covered by medical or dental insurance through your job or your spouse's job, that coverage can be continued even after the divorce. If you want the insurance coverage to continue after the divorce, call the Employment Benefits Office of you or your spouse's employer and ask for "COBRA" coverage. 28. This question is about spousal maintenance. Spousal maintenance is money paid by one spouse to help support the other spouse (formerly called alimony). If you check YES for either (a) or (b), you need to provide details about the length of marriage, education of the spouse who would receive maintenance, gross monthly income, and reasons why the spouse would not be able to maintain the standard of living established during the marriage. List all the vehicles owned by husband and wife together or separately.

29.

WARNING: Questions 30-31 ask about marital and non-marital property. Dividing marital property and non-marital property can be complicated. You should talk to an attorney. For example, a house purchased by one spouse before the marriage, then lived in by both spouses will generally be part marital and part non-marital property. An attorney can advise you on the law and how to divide the value of the house between you.
Marital Property means almost anything that you or your spouse own that you or your spouse received during the marriage, even during the times that you and your spouse were separated. This includes real estate, boats, cabins, household goods, furniture, jewelry, and other things. Non-marital Property means: (1) anything that you or your spouse owned before the marriage; (2) anything that you or your spouse received as a gift, bequest, devise, or inheritance; (3) anything that you or your spouse got in trade or in exchange for your non-marital property; (4) anything that is an increase in the value of non-marital property; (5) anything you or your spouse received after the valuation date set by the Court; or (6) anything included by a valid antenuptial contract (STOP: If you have an antenuptial contract, you should stop here and talk to an attorney.)

30.

Check YES or NO whether you and your spouse have divided the marital property to your mutual satisfaction, including household goods, furniture, furnishings, and other belongings. If you have NOT divided the marital property, list the items that you want. (a) Check YES or NO whether your spouse claims non-marital property. Non-marital property is property owned before the marriage or acquired during the marriage by inheritance or gift. List all non-marital property your spouse owns. (b) Check YES or NO whether you claim non-marital property. Non-marital property is property you owned before you got married or acquired during the marriage by inheritance or gift. List all non-marital property you own.

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32.

Check YES or NO whether you or your spouse has money in banks, savings, cash or investments. If YES, fill in all columns in the box.

DIV901

State

ENG

Rev 5/08

www.mncourts.gov/forms

Page 8 of 24

33.

Check YES or NO whether you and/or your spouse own part or all of a business. If YES, fill in the name, address and value of the business. Check YES or NO if either you or your spouse owns a manufactured (mobile) home. If YES, complete the detail questions.

34.

WARNING: Question 35 asks you to list all real property. Real property is land and the buildings on the land. You must list all real property owned by you and your spouse together, separately, or with others. Failure to list all property will create serious problems and expense in the future. Until the divorce is finalized and the Decree awards the property to just one party, both husband and wife have an interest in all real estate owned by either husband or wife. A deed given by one spouse to the other spouse before the divorce is finalized does not transfer all interest to the grantee spouse. Any deeds between the parties must be signed and dated after the divorce is finalized. Dividing real property is complicated. You should talk to an attorney if you and/or your spouse own any real property. 35. (a) Check YES or NO if you and your spouse own any real property together. (b) Check YES or NO if your spouse owns real property solely in his/her name or with someone other than you. (c) Check YES or NO if you own real property solely in your name or with someone other than your spouse. (d) Answer how many properties are owned by you and your spouse in total. If YES to (a), (b) or (c), complete the Real Property Information questions for each piece of property. (1) List the full names of all owners of the property. (2) Fill in the legal description of the property (the legal description is not the same as the street address). Example of Legal Description: Lot 1, Block 4, Hamden Edition, Hennepin County, Minnesota. You can get a copy of the legal description from the Deed or Contract for Deed at the office of the County Recorder or Registrar of Titles in the County where the real property is located. WARNING: Be sure to copy the legal description exactly as is on the Deed or Contract for Deed. (3) Fill in the street address, city, county, and state where your property is located. (4) State the date the property was purchased and its purchase price. (5) State the amount of any existing loans or mortgages. (6) State the current market value of the property and describe how you came up with that value. (7) Check YES if this property is the homestead.

WARNING: Question 36 asks about pension, profit sharing, and retirement plans. Dividing pension, profit sharing, and retirement plans is complicated. You or your spouse could face large losses if the divorce decree does not divide the pension or retirement plan according to the laws that apply. You should talk to an attorney if you or your spouse have any of these types of plan. 36. (a) Check YES or NO if your spouse has an IRA, 401(k), 403(b) or other retirement plan. If YES, list the last four digits of the account number, the name of the bank, and the current account balance. (b) Check YES or NO if your spouse's past or present employer, union, or other group, paid money into a pension, profit-sharing, or other retirement plan for your spouse. If YES, list the name of the plan, the name of the group employer, union, or group providing the plan, the date your spouse began working at the job or joined the plan, the type of plan, and the present value of the plan. (c) Check YES or NO if you have an IRA, 401(k), 403(b) or other retirement plan. If YES, list the last four digits of the account number, the name of the bank, and the current account balance.

DIV901

State

ENG

Rev 5/08

www.mncourts.gov/forms

Page 9 of 24

(d) Check YES or NO if your past or present employer, union, or other group, paid money into a pension, profit-sharing, or other retirement plan for you. If YES, list the name of the plan, the name of the group employer, union, or group providing the plan, the date you began working at the job or joined the plan, the type of plan, and the present value of the plan. 37. Check YES or NO if you and/or your spouse have outstanding debts (owe money) either together or separately. If YES, list all of the debts you and your spouse now have, even if only one of you created the debt and even if only one of your names is on the credit card, loan or note. List all debts still owed from before you were married, from during the marriage but before separation, and after separation. The Judgment and Decree (divorce decree) will state who is responsible for paying each debt. Include credit card bills, gas bills, water bills, telephone bills, school loans, car loans, home loans and mortgages, and other bills and loans. List to whom the debt is owed (such as Sears); how the money was used (such as "clothing for the children"); whose name is on the account and when the debt was created (if you cannot get the exact date the debt was created, at least state if the debt is from before the marriage, or during the marriage and before separation, or after separation); the current balance due; and the monthly payment. Attach another sheet of paper if you need more space. You must disclose all debts. You may change your name as part of the divorce, but you do not have to do so. You can change your name to a maiden name, or some other name. You cannot make your spouse change his or her name, and your spouse cannot make you change your name. If you want to change your name, check YES and answer (a) (c). If you do not want to change your name, check NO. (a) Print the new name you want (first, middle, and last). Do not use initials unless you want only an initial instead of a full name. Check whether this is a former legal name or maiden name. If not, explain why you want to change to this name. (b) You cannot change your name if your reason for changing your name is to defraud or mislead anyone. Mark True or False to the statement "Respondent has no intent to defraud or mislead anyone by changing his/her name." (c) If you have a felony conviction, you cannot change your name unless you notify the prosecuting authority that you intend to change your name. The prosecuting authority has 30 days after being served with your notice to object to the name change. If you have been convicted of a felony anywhere in the United States, answer (c) YES. Ask Court Administration to give you the Felon Name Change Instructions or you can download the forms at www.mncourts.gov/forms. Warning: If you do not notify the prosecuting authority of the request for name change and you use your new name, you may be guilty of a gross misdemeanor. List any other facts you would like the Court to know.

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INSTRUCTIONS FOR ANSWERING QUESTIONS 1-24, WHICH TELL THE COURT AND YOUR SPOUSE WHAT YOU WANT THE COURT TO ORDER

1.

This tells the Court that you want your marriage dissolved. You do not need to write anything here.

QUESTIONS 2 and 3 tell the Court and your spouse who you think should have legal custody and physical custody of the joint child(ren). The Court will decide who should have custody based on what is best for the child(ren).
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Legal Custody identifies which parent(s) have the right to make decisions regarding the upbringing of the child(ren), including education, health care, and religious training. Legal Custody can either be sole or joint. Sole Legal Custody means that only one parent has a right to make decisions regarding the upbringing of the child(ren), and Joint Legal Custody means both parents share in the decision-making. Physical Custody identifies which person(s) will handle the routine daily care and control of the child(ren). Generally, the child lives with the parent who has physical custody. Physical custody can either be sole or joint. If Sole Physical Custody is awarded, the noncustodial parent will have scheduled parenting time (visitation) rights unless the court "reserves" parenting time. If parenting time is "reserved" there is no order made for parenting time. But either parent can request a schedule in the future by filing a motion. Joint Physical Custody means that the child(ren) lives with both parents based upon a schedule that best meets the needs of the child and parents, and that the parents have joint responsibility and control in the daily care of the child(ren). If you request joint physical custody, you must be able to show that you and the other parent can cooperate and work together to resolve problems that arise in raising your children. 2. Write the name of each joint child who is under age 18, or is 18 or 19 and still in high school. For each child, check the box to show what you want for legal custody. Again, write the name of each joint child who is under age 18, or is 18 or 19 and still in high school. For each child, check the box to show what you want for physical custody. Write down what parenting time arrangements you want. First, check the boxes to show if parenting time should be unsupervised, supervised, or reserved. This should match what you said at #16 of the Findings section on the Counter-Petition. Then, describe the parenting time schedule you want. It should be clear from your schedule which parent is taking care of each child at all times (24 hours a day/7 days a week). Include the time of day that the child will be exchanged. For example, a weekday schedule might be "the children are with Mother every Monday through Friday, except that Father has parenting time every Wednesday from 4pm to 8am Thursday." What is appropriate for parenting time can depend on the age of the child. For more information, read "A Parental Guide to Making Child-Focused Parenting Time Decisions." Child development experts wrote this pamphlet to help parents and Judges understand the needs of children and how those needs change as a child gets older. This pamphlet is available from court administration and is on the court's website. After you have set out the weekday and weekend schedule, you can request a different schedule for summer, holidays, birthdays, or school release days. Holidays may include, but are not limited to, the following: New Years Day, Easter, Memorial Day weekend, Fourth of July, Labor Day weekend, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas. Some parents alternate holidays each year so that, for example, on Memorial Day weekend the child(ren) would be with the mother in odd-numbered years and with the father in even-numbered years. The next holiday would be Fourth of July and the child(ren) would be with the father in odd-numbered years and with the mother in even-numbered years. Other parents keep the same holidays each year so that, for example, the child(ren) spends every Christmas Eve with the mother and every
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3.

4.

Christmas Day with the father. Under "Other" you may want to include how you would like to handle Mother's Day, Father's Day, and any days or events that are special to you. Some parents include transportation details in the parenting time schedule. If you want to say who is responsible for transporting the child for parenting time, enter that under "Other". Some parents make very detailed parenting plans that address many more issues that come up in raising the children. If you would like a more detailed parenting plan, you can create one and attach it to your Counter Petition. The court does not have a form for a more detailed plan. It is also possible to request "reasonable parenting time." With reasonable parenting time, there is no schedule in the divorce order. Instead, the parents work out parenting time themselves, on an on-going basis. If you want "reasonable parenting time" write that phrase under "Other" and leave the rest of the schedule blank. 5. The court will make an order regarding child support. Child support includes costs for the children for basic support for daily living expenses, health care coverage, uninsured and unreimbursed health care expenses, and child care expenses if child care is needed so the parent can work or attend school. You do not need to fill in anything at #5. However, at some point in the proceedings, you will need to be specific about the amount of child support that is needed. The Minnesota Department of Human Services has created an online calculator for child support at: http://childsupportcalculator.dhs.state.mn.us You need income information for yourself and your spouse to use the calculator. This calculator is intended for use by the public, and after you enter the required information, the calculator produces dollar amounts for support based on Minnesota law. If you think that support should be higher or lower in your case, you need to add a statement to your Counter-Petition, requesting a "deviation" in child support and stating facts that support your request. You should research the law or get help from a lawyer if you wish to request a deviation. At a. check off whether you want to pay for the child(ren)'s medical and/or dental insurance through employment or private insurance or whether you want your spouse (Petitioner) to pay for the child(ren)'s medical and/or dental insurance through employment or private insurance. If the children are covered by Medical Assistance or Minnesota Care, check box b. instead. If you think the court should make no orders about health coverage for the children at this time, check box c. to "reserve" the issue. Reserving the issue means that in the future either parent can file a motion in court asking for an order deciding who must provide health coverage for the joint children. Usually medical and dental insurance does not pay every bill. For example, co-payments and medicine might not be covered. These costs are called unreimbursed costs. Uninsured costs are expenses for treatment not covered by the health plan. These costs are part of the child support obligation. The child support calculator provides a percentage allocation of these costs, based on the relative incomes of the parents. Check box a. to ask that these expenses be shared. Or check box b. if you want the court to reserve this issue and not make an order about these expenses at this time. This paragraph states how you want to handle the health insurance coverage costs for you and your spouse (not your children.) Check box (a) if you want you and your spouse to be responsible for your own insurance after the divorce. Check box (b) if you want one of you to pay the insurance costs for the other after the divorce. Box (c) is for COBRA coverage.
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6.

7.

8.

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COBRA coverage exists under federal law and it allows a spouse to continue to be covered under the other spouse's work insurance even after the divorce. For more information on costs, whether this coverage is available, and how to get it, check with the employer of the person who has health coverage. If you have other questions, or if the boxes provided do not explain what you want the court to order, ask an attorney for help. 9. Minnesota law requires the parents to share work-related and school-related childcare costs. This is part of the child support obligation. You can check the box to have the judge determine the share of monthly child care expenses according to Minnesota law or you can check the box to reserve the issue. The child support calculator will calculate the share each parent should pay, based on their relative incomes. Spousal maintenance is money paid by one spouse to the other to help with the spouse's necessary monthly living expenses. This is separate from child support. If you want spousal maintenance to be denied, check box 10(a). If spousal maintenance is denied, you and your spouse can not ask for it to be ordered later (after the divorce) even if your circumstances change. If you want to be retain the ability to ask for spousal maintenance after the divorce is final, check "reserved." If you check reserved and the court agrees to reserve maintenance, your spouse can also request maintenance from you at a later date. If you want an order for spousal maintenance now, check box 10(c) and indicate who should pay. In question 29 above you listed all of the vehicles owned by you and your spouse. Write down which vehicles you want the Court to give to you and which vehicles you want your spouse to have.

10.

11.

WARNING: Dividing marital property and non-marital property is complicated. You should talk to an attorney. 12. Check YES or NO whether you and your spouse have already divided your marital property to your mutual satisfaction. If NO, list the marital property you want to receive and the marital property you want your spouse to receive. Check YES or NO whether you and your spouse have already divided your non-marital property to your mutual satisfaction. If NO, list the non-marital property you want to receive and the non-marital property you want your spouse to receive. State how you want the Court to divide the cash and investments listed at #32 above. If you and/or your spouse own a business, state how you want the Court to divide the business. Be very specific. If you and/or your spouse own a manufactured home, provide the address of the manufactured home and check off who should get it. If there is a debt on the manufactured home, fill in who the debt is owed to and who should pay the debt. If you or your spouse own real property either separately or together, check off whether you (Respondent) or your spouse (Petitioner) should be awarded that real property, and then list the street address, city, county and state where the homestead is located, and then write the exact

13.

14. 15.

16.

17.

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legal description. You can get a copy of the legal description from the Deed or Contract for Deed at the office of the County Recorder or Registrar of Titles in the County where the property is located. Write in the name of the mortgage company and the amount of the current mortgage balance. If there is additional real property, list it in paragraph 18. 18. If there is additional real property, provide the address and legal description and state how that property should be awarded. Describe how your pension, profit sharing, retirement, IRA or 401 plan should be divided, then do the same with any plan in your spouse's name. Get competent legal and tax advice before making any decisions. If you listed any debts at #37 in your Counter-Petition, list those debts again here. State who the debt is owed to, and then state who should pay this debt - you or your spouse. The court can order one of you to pay a debt, but if both your names are on the debt, the creditor can still go after either of you for payment. Your divorce doesn't eliminate your legal obligation to pay a debt you promised to pay when the money was borrowed. If you are worried about the debt being paid, ask a lawyer for advice about how to handle the debt in the divorce. Whether or not you have debt, you can check box 20 b. asking that you and your spouse both be responsible for non-joint debts you each incurred on your own. If you want to change your name, print exactly how your new name should be listed (first, middle, and last). Do not use initials unless you want only an initial instead of a full name. List anything else you would like the court to decide. You do not need to write anything for question 23. READ and SIGN the Verification and Acknowledgments.

19.

20.

21.

22. 23. 24.

DO NOT DATE AND SIGN YOUR ANSWER AND COUNTER-PETITION UNTIL YOU ARE IN THE PRESENCE OF A NOTARY PUBLIC OR COURT ADMINISTRATOR/DEPUTY. MAKE SURE TO BRING PICTURE IDENTIFICATION TO SHOW TO THEM. A Court Administrator/Deputy is found in your local courthouse and a Notary Public can usually be found at a bank.

Step 2
Fill Out the Financial Affidavit
Fill out the form called "Financial Affidavit". This form asks for your income information. Look at paragraph 25 on your Counter-Petition. The information you put on the Financial Affidavit should be the same as #25 on the Counter-Petition. The Financial Affidavit is required to be served on your spouse and filed with the court at the same time you serve and file your Answer and Counter-Petition. The Financial Affidavit has separate instructions which you should read. It is very important to attach to the Financial Affidavit any proof you have regarding your income. This proof may include the last 3 months of pay stubs, income tax return, or other

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documents. Make sure the copy of the Financial Affidavit you provide to your spouse also has copies of your proof of income. To file an Answer, you must pay a court filing fee. If you cannot afford this fee, a Judge may waive it under certain circumstances. Ask court administration for a Fee Waiver form, called In Forma Pauperis application or download the forms at www.mncourts.gov/forms. Fill out this application and sign it in front of a Notary Public or Court Administrator/Deputy. Take the In Forma Pauperis application and a copy of your Answer and Counter-Petition to the Court Administrator's office to have a Judge review your application and decide if you must pay the filing fee. The Court Administrator cannot accept your legal papers without either the filing fee or an Order signed by a Judge waiving the fee.

Step 3
Make Copies of Forms
Make two (2) copies of the Answer and Counter-Petition and Financial Affidavit and proof of income (pay stubs or other documents). Keep one for yourself. Step 4 tells you how to serve the second copy on the other party. Step 6 tells you what to do with the original Answer and Counter-Petition and Financial Affidavit.

Step 4
Serve the Other Party
Your spouse must receive a copy of your Answer and Counter-Petition and Financial Affidavit within thirty (30) days of the date you were served with the Summons and Petition. This is called "service of process." Service of process may be done either by "Personal Service" or by "Mail Service." Follow these instructions: NOTE: You need to have someone else hand-deliver or mail the Answer and Counter-Petition and Financial Affidavit to your spouse's attorney or to your spouse if he/she does not have an attorney listed on the Petition. 1. Personal Service Ask an adult friend or adult family member to hand a copy of the Answer and Counter-Petition and Financial Affidavit directly to your spouse. If your spouse has an attorney, the attorney's name and address will be on the Summons you received, and instead of delivering the papers to your spouse, they must be delivered to your spouse's attorney. The papers cannot be given to anyone other than your spouse or your spouse's attorney, if any. If you do not have an adult friend or adult family member who will serve the Answer and Counter-Petition on your spouse, you should call a private process server listed in the telephone book, or ask the Sheriff in the county where your spouse lives, who will then serve the papers. Private process servers and the Sheriff charge a fee to serve papers.

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2.

Service by Mail Ask an adult friend or adult family member to place one copy of the Answer and Counter-Petition and Financial Affidavit in an envelope. Write your spouse's address on the front of the envelope, or, if your spouse has an attorney, write the attorney's address on the front of the envelope. Ask the friend or family member to place the correct amount of postage on the envelope (you may want to take the envelope to the post office and have it weighed to determine the correct postage), and put the envelope in the mailbox.

Step 5
The Person Who Serves Your Spouse Must Fill Out the Affidavit of Service
The person who handed or mailed the Answer and Counter-Petition and Financial Affidavit to your spouse (or your spouse's attorney, if any) must fill out an Affidavit of Service form. This form proves to the court that your papers were handed or mailed to the other party. There are two different Affidavits included in this packet. It is very important to use the correct form based on the way in which the papers were served on your spouse. If the papers were hand-delivered to your spouse (or your spouse's attorney), fill out the Affidavit of Personal Service form by following these instructions: 1. 2. Fill in the top part of the form the same way you did on your Answer and Counter-Petition. After "County of," fill in the name of the county where the Affidavit of Personal Service was signed. On the blank line after "I," fill in the name of the person who hand-delivered the forms to your spouse (or your spouse's attorney). Fill in the date of birth of the person who hand-delivered the forms. Fill in the date that the documents were hand-delivered to your spouse (or your spouse's attorney). List the papers that were actually handed to your spouse or your spouse's attorney. (For example, the Answer and Counter-Petition and Financial Affidavit). Fill in the full name of the person to whom the documents were handed (either your spouse or your spouse's attorney).

3.

4. 5. 6.

7.

The person who delivered the forms must not sign the Affidavit of Personal Service until (s)he is in the presence of a Notary Public or Court Administrator/Deputy. Make sure the person brings picture identification to show them. 8. After it has been signed, make one copy of the Affidavit of Personal Service for your records.

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If the papers were mailed to your spouse (or your spouse's attorney, if any), the person who mailed the documents must fill out the Affidavit of Service by Mail form by following these instructions: 1. 2. Fill out the top part of the form the same way you did on your Answer and Counter-Petition. After "County of," fill in the name of the County where the Affidavit of Service by Mail was signed. On the blank line after "I," fill in the name of the person who mailed the forms to your spouse (or your spouse's attorney). Fill in the date of birth of the person who mailed the forms. Fill in the date the documents were placed in the mail to your spouse (or your spouse's attorney). Fill in the complete titles of all of the documents that were mailed to your spouse or your spouse's attorney (Answer and Counter-Petition and Financial Affidavit). Fill in the full name of the person to whom you addressed the envelope and to whom the envelope was mailed (either your spouse or your spouse's attorney). Fill in the address to which the envelope was mailed (either your spouse's address or the address of your spouse's attorney), including the street address, city, sate, and zip code. Fill in the city and state in which the post office is located and where the envelope was mailed.

3.

4. 5. 6.

7.

8.

9.

The person who mailed the forms must not sign the Affidavit of Service by Mail until (s)he is in the presence of a Notary Public or Court Administrator/Deputy. Make sure the person brings picture identification to show them. 10. After it has been signed, make one copy of the Affidavit of Service by Mail for your records.

Step 6
File the Forms With the Court
Immediately take or mail the originals of the following documents to the Court Administrator's office. You may also mail the papers to the Court Administrator. Answer and Counter-Petition Financial Affidavit with proof of income attached Form 11.1 Confidential Information Form (Include names and social security numbers for you, your spouse and all children you and your spouse have together and separately. This information will be kept confidential.) Form 11.2 Sealed Financial Records Form (This Form should be attached as a "cover sheet" to your Financial Affidavit and proof of income. This form tells the court to keep your financial records like pay stubs and income tax returns in a separate confidential folder that is unavailable to the public. Your spouse and the judge will have access to your financial records.) Affidavit of Personal Service OR Affidavit of Service by Mail
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You will now need to pay a filing fee. Contact the Court Administrator to find out the amount of the filing fee. If you cannot afford to pay the filing fee, the Judge may waive it under certain circumstances. Ask the Court Administrator/Deputy for an In Forma Pauperis application or download the forms at www.mncourts.gov/forms. Fill out this application and then sign it in front of a Notary Public or Court Administrator/Deputy. Court administration staff will explain local practice as to presenting the In Forma Pauper application to a judge for review. A judge will review your application and decide if you must pay the filing fee. The Court Administrator cannot accept your legal papers without either the required filing free or an order from a judge waiving the fee.

Step 7
Parenting Education Session and Child Education Session
If there are children under the age of 18, parenting classes are required for the parents before you can get divorced. If the parties together have children between the ages of 6 and 17, the children must also attend classes before you can get divorced. Parenting Programs: Both you and your spouse must attend the Parent Education. You can get a listing of local parenting programs from the Court Administrator along with a description of the programs and how to register. Fees may be based on your ability to pay. Parenting classes must be fulfilled BEFORE your divorce can be finalized.

Step 8
Temporary Relief
If you and your spouse need a temporary order to address temporary custody, parenting time, child support, spousal maintenance or any other matter in the divorce, go to the Court Administrator's office and ask for "Temporary Relief Pending Final Hearing With Children" forms or download the forms at www.mncourts.gov./forms. If the judge signs the temporary order that order is in effect until the judge signs the final order divorcing you and your spouse.

Step 9
Try to Settle All of the Issues With Your Spouse
1. If you do not respond to the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage within thirty (30) days, your spouse will notify the court and ask the court to grant everything asked for in the Petition. The court will do so by issuing a final divorce decree called the Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, Order for Judgment and Judgment and Decree. If you AGREE with everything your spouse is asking for in the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, tell your spouse in writing. Your spouse will then complete a document called a Marital Termination Agreement that you will be asked to review and sign to make sure it says what you agreed to for your divorce. Your spouse will also complete a document called a
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2.

DIV901

Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, Order for Judgment and Judgment and Decree which you will be asked to review and sign to make sure it says what you agreed to in your divorce. 3. If you do NOT AGREE with everything your spouse is asking for in the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, you and your spouse should attempt to reach an agreement regarding as many issues as possible. If you and your spouse reach an agreement regarding all issues, your spouse will fill out a Marital Termination Agreement that you will be asked to review and sign to make sure it says what you agreed to for your divorce. Your spouse will also complete a document called a Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, Order for Judgment and Judgment and Decree which you will be asked to review and sign to make sure it says what you agreed to in your divorce. If you and your spouse DO NOT reach an agreement regarding all of the issues, you and your spouse will have to go to court and a judge will decide the issues for you after a trial. If disagreements still exist, go to Step 10 and fill out the Prehearing Statement included in this packet.

Step 10
Fill Out the Prehearing Statement
NOTE: Fill out the Prehearing Statement form ONLY if you and your spouse DO NOT reach an agreement regarding all of the issues and you must go to trial so the judge can make a decision on how to settle the issues. The Prehearing Statement gives the court-updated information regarding income, employment, property, child(ren), and other issues since you filed your Counter-Petition. Your spouse will also submit a Prehearing Statement. The court will schedule a hearing called a "Prehearing Conference." Unless excused by the court, you must attend the hearing prepared to negotiate a final settlement of all issues. If you do not go to the Prehearing Conference, the court can issue a final divorce decree without considering anything that you have asked for, and can order you to pay your spouse's attorney's fees (if any). If you and your spouse cannot reach an agreement at the Prehearing Conference, the court will issue an order identifying the issues about which you disagree, scheduling the trial date, and setting the date by which you and your spouse must exchange your list of exhibits and witnesses to be offered at trial. The questions asked in the Prehearing Statement form are similar to questions asked on other forms you have already filled out. The purpose of this form, however, is to give the court-updated information in preparation for trial. To answer the questions asked about YOU, you should look at your Answer and Counter-Petition and any Application for Temporary Relief you may have filled out. To answer the questions asked about YOUR SPOUSE, you should look at your spouse's Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and any Application for Temporary Relief your spouse may have filled out. The Application for Temporary Relief is a separate form. Fill out the Prehearing Statement by following these instructions: FILL IN THE TOP PART OF THE FORM:

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The information on the top part of the form is the same as on all of the other forms you have filled out. Write in the case number. Write in the full name of your spouse (Petitioner) and your full name (Respondent). On the right-hand side of the page, above "Prehearing Statement," check off whether you are the Petitioner or Respondent. FILL IN THE REST OF THE FORM NOTE: The instructions that follow are numbered the same as the questions on the form. 1. Fill in the personal information about you and your spouse, including: a. full name; b. present mailing address; c. employer's name; d. employer's address e. birth date; f. marriage date; g. the date you and your spouse separated (began living in different houses), if any; h. the date(s) of any temporary orders already issued by the Court in this case; i. the name, birth date and age of each child born or adopted into your marriage; and with whom each child is now living, if under the age of 18; j. check YES or NO whether the wife is or is not currently pregnant and, if pregnant, the date that the baby is due; k. the next question asks whether custody is or is not contested: Check NO if you and your spouse AGREE about who will have legal and physical custody if the child(ren). Check YES if you and your spouse DISAGREE about who will have legal and physical custody if the child(ren), and then on a separate sheet of paper, write your proposal for custody and visitation for each child. Write "Exhibit 1A" at the top of the paper. 2. a. Print the name of your employer and write in how long you have worked there. Do the same for your spouse. ATTACH A COPY OF YOUR PAYCHECK STUB(S) FOR THE LAST MONTH, AND IF POSSIBLE, FOR THE LAST THREE (3) MONTHS. b. (1) Write your GROSS (before taxes) MONTHLY income, then do the same for your spouse. If you are paid one time per month, write the gross monthly amount on the line. If you are paid two times a month (such as on the 1st and 15th), add together these two gross amounts, and write that amount on the line. If you are paid every other week, multiply the gross amount from one paycheck by 26 (the number of times you are paid each year), divide that amount by 12 and write that amount on the line. If you are paid only one time per year, divide that amount by 12 and write that amount on the line. Write in amounts deducted from your income, including Federal Income Tax, State Income Tax, Social Security (FICA) and Medicare, Pension deduction, union dues,
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(2)

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health/hospitalization coverage for you and your family, and dental coverage for you and your family. Do the same for your spouse. (3) Add together all deductions from your income and write that on the line. Do the same for your spouse. To figure out your net income, subtract line 3 from line 1. Do the same for your spouse. List the type and amount of other deductions from your income (for example, child support). Do the same for your spouse. Add together all your "other deductions" and write that on the line. Do the same for your spouse. To figure out your net take-home pay, subtract line 6 from line 4. Do the same for your spouse.

(4) (5)

(6)

(7)

c. List your tax withholding status. For example, write M-2 if you are married and claim two deductions. Do the same for your spouse. d. Check YES or NO whether your medical and dental insurance coverage will be available to your spouse after the divorce. If you do not know the answer, call your employer's employment benefits office and ask whether "COBRA" coverage is available for your spouse. e. List any other income you receive. Do the same for your spouse. f. List all other employment benefits you receive or expect to receive. Do the same for your spouse. 3. a. Check whether YOUR SPOUSE pays or receives child support or maintenance (alimony) as a result of a paternity case or divorce from someone other than you. If NO, do not write anything for this question. If YES, fill in the amount paid or received each month, the date and county in which the order was issued, and check off whether any arrearage exists (and if so, fill in the amount of the arrearage). Arrearage is any amount that is past due. b. Check whether YOU pay or receive child support or maintenance (alimony) as a result of a paternity case or divorce from someone other than your spouse. If NO, do not write anything for this question. If YES, fill in the amount paid or received each month, the date and county in which the Order was issued, and check off whether any arrearage exists (and if so, fill in the amount of the arrearage). Arrearage is any amount that is past due. c. Check whether the judge has issued a temporary order in this case for child support or maintenance (alimony). If NO, do not write anything for this question. If there is a temporary order for child support, check whether you (Respondent) or your spouse (Petitioner) pays child support, fill in the monthly child support amount, and check off whether there is or is not an arrearage. If there is an arrearage, fill in the amount past due. If there is a temporary order for maintenance, check whether you (Respondent) or your spouse (Petitioner) pays maintenance. Fill in the monthly amount of maintenance, and check off whether there is or is not an arrearage, and if so, fill in the amount of the arrearage.
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4.

List all of your necessary monthly expenses. List the expenses for your child(ren) if they are separate from yours and if you are responsible for paying those expenses. For any home owned by you and your spouse together, fill in the date the property was purchased, the purchase price, the estimated market value (this can be found on the most recent tax statement), the balance due on any mortgage(s) or loan(s), the net value of the property (market value minus the total due on mortgages or loans), the monthly mortgage payment, the name(s) on the title to the property, and the amount of any rental income (if any). Provide the same information for any other real property (such as a cabin) owned by you alone, your spouse alone, or both of you together. Attach another full sheet of paper if you need more room, and at the top of the paper, write "Exhibit 5A." If you alone (without your spouse) own any of the items listed, fill in the estimated market value. For stocks and bonds, include the stock name and number. For checking and savings accounts, include the bank name and account number. Do the same for any items owned by your spouse alone (without you). Do the same for any items owned by you and your spouse together. List all items you claim are your non-marital property and include the value of each item. Non-marital property means: (1) anything owned before the marriage; (2) anything received as a gift, bequest, devise or inheritance during the marriage; (3) anything received in a trade or exchange for non-marital property; (4) anything that is an increase in value of the non-marital property; 5) anything received after the valuation date set by the Court; (6) anything excluded by a valid ante nuptial contract. For each insurance policy owned by you or your spouse, list the name of the insurance company, the policy number, the type of insurance, the face amount, the cash value, the balance due on any loans, the name of the insured, the name(s) of the beneficiary(s) and the owner(s). Fill in the value and all other information regarding any pension, profit sharing, I.R.A., Keogh, deferred compensation, or other plan owned by you. Fill in the same information for any such plans owned by your spouse. List all secured and unsecured debts (DO NOT list any debts already included in Questions 5 or 6, such as for home or car loans). a. A secured debt is one for which you have pledged collateral. List all secured debts owed by you alone (without your spouse), including the name of the creditor, the balance due, monthly payment, the date the debt began, who owes the debt, and the reason for the debt. Do the same for any secured debts owed by your spouse alone (without you). Fill in the same information for any secured debts owed by you and your spouse together. Attach another sheet of paper if you need more room, and at the top of the paper, write "Exhibit 10A." Examples of unsecured debts include utility bills (water, gas, electricity, etc.), credit card bills, school loans, and other bills and loans. On a separate sheet of paper, list all of the unsecured debts owed by you and/or your spouse, including the name of the creditor, the balance due, the monthly payment, and who owes the debt. At the top of the paper, write

5.

6.

7.

8.

9.

10.

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"Exhibit 10B." Add up the total owed for you alone, for your spouse alone, and then the two of you together. Write those amounts on the lines for Question 10(b). SIGN AND DATE THE FORM. IF YOU HAVE AN ATTORNEY, HAVE THE ATTORNEY SIGN IT AND FILL IN THE ADDRESS AND PHONE NUMBER. MAKE TWO COPIES OF THE PREHEARING STATEMENT. KEEP ONE COPY FOR YOUR RECORDS. MAKE SURE THAT YOU MAIL OR HAND-DELIVER THE SECOND COPY OF THE PREHEARING STATEMENT TO YOUR SPOUSE AND THE ORIGINAL PREHEARING STATEMENT TO THE COURT BY THE DEADLINE SET BY THE COURT. ATTEND THE PREHEARING CONFERENCE PREPARED TO SETTLE AS MANY ISSUES AS POSSIBLE. IF ALL ISSUES ARE NOT SETTLED AT THE PREHEARING CONFERENCE, THE COURT WILL SET THE MATTER FOR TRIAL.

Step 11
Wait For Your Final Divorce Decree
1. If you and your spouse reached an agreement settling all of the issues in your marriage (such as signing a Marital Termination Agreement), your spouse will fill out the final divorce decree called the Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, Order for Judgment and Judgment and Decree, and will send it to you for your review. You must sign it on the last page on the line that says "Approved as to Form," and then give the document back to your spouse. Your spouse will file the document with the Court. The Court Administrator will send you and your spouse a notice telling you when the Judge has signed the Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, Order for Judgment, and Judgment and Decree. If you and your spouse were unable to settle all of the issues and you had to go to trial, the court will issue the final divorce decree within 90 days after the trial. This will be called the Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, Order for Judgment and Judgment and Decree. A copy will be sent to you.

2.

WARNING: YOU ARE NOT DIVORCED UNTIL THE JUDGE AND THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR/DEPUTY SIGNS THE FINDINGS OF FACT, CONCLUSIONS OF LAW, ORDER FOR JUDGMENT AND JUDGMENT AND DECREE. You will be notified by mail when this happens. You may obtain a plain copy or certified copy of your Divorce Decree from the Court Administrator. There is a cost for a certified copy and a cost for a plain copy. Make checks payable to "Court Administrator." Include your name and the case number in your request. NOTE: You may make additional copies of your Decree. However, a copy is "certified" only if it has the original seal of the District Court. You cannot make a certified copy yourself. OTHER STEPS AFTER ENTRY OF THE DECREE:

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It is the responsibility of the parties to take all necessary steps to put into effect the others of the court. For example, if you changed your name as part of this proceeding, you will need to get your driver's license and social security card changed to reflect your legal name. If you or Petitioner were awarded pension or medical benefits, the company or provider will need to see the Decree and may have other requirements before making the changes ordered by the court. If you and/or Petitioner own real estate, a certified copy of the Decree must be filed in the real estate records where the property is located. The actions you need to take depend on your Decree and your situation.

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File Size: 234.2 kB
Pages: 24
Date: June 13, 2008
File Format: PDF
State: Minnesota
Category: Court Forms - State
Author: ROBERT LOWELL SIME
Word Count: 11,673 Words, 66,723 Characters
Page Size: Letter (8 1/2" x 11")
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http://www.courts.state.mn.us/forms/public/forms/Divorce__Dissolution/Answer_and_Counter_Petition_with_Children/DIV901.pdf