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Minnesota expungement: Can it help clear your criminal record?

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If you live in Minnesota and have a criminal record, it could hold you back from a lot. When you're looking for a new apartment or home to rent, for example, a criminal record could preclude you from moving into the home you want.

Looking for a job or pushing for a promotion with a criminal record isn't easy either. Most places perform criminal background checks before hiring, and a number of employers now do the same when promoting someone internally.

Creating a parenting plan during a divorce

When Minnesota parents decide to divorce, they must make important decisions about how they will raise their children and share parenting time. In the mind of many judges, having ample access to both parents is presumed to be in a child's best interests. This presumption is rebuttable, however, if it can be shown that, for example, one parent has a history of substance abuse or domestic violence.

When divorcing parents work together to create a parenting plan for their children, the result may be better for the family than if a judge is asked to make a child custody determination after weighing all the evidence. Working together to create a parenting plan can reduce the chances that the parents will need to appear later in court to modify a plan that isn't working.

Why people get a divorce

Minnesota couples know that marriage can be hard work and that many end in divorce. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 22 percent of couples who have been married for five years will go through a marriage disruption in the form of a death, separation or divorce. For couples who have been married for at least 20 years, that figure increases to 53 percent. With regard to divorce, there are several reasons why couples way opt to go their separate ways.

One of the most common reasons given for a divorce is infidelity, which can include both physical and emotional affairs. Some marriages can end over a one-time transgression, while others may be doomed after a spouse has repeatedly strayed.

Asset protection is possible without prenup

While prenuptial agreements are one of the best tools when it comes to protecting assets in case of a divorce, many people are hesitant about them. Fortunately, there are ways for Minnesota residents to protect their assets without a prenup. First, a couple does not need to discuss finances just in relation to prenups. Instead, a couple can assess how to handle finances when marrying.

Combining assets is not always the best idea. It may make more sense to keep premarital assets separate if one partner has debt. This is because all joint assets might be at risk from creditors regardless of which partner acquired the debt before the marriage. A couple could combine some premarital assets or just maintain separate finances. Partners can also open new accounts instead of combining existing ones.

What increases the chances of a divorce

Minnesota residents that are considering getting married should know that there might be certain risk factors that can increase their odds of getting a divorce. These criteria are not direct causes of divorce, nor should they be used to assume that a divorce will definitely occur. However, it is important to understand how such factors may make the hard work needed to make a marriage succeed even more difficult.

Individuals who have been previously divorced have a lower chance of their successive marriages succeeding. Data from the Centers for Disease Control indicate that almost 35 percent of first marriages and 40 percent of second ones are over within a decade.

Divorce may be less likely for couples who meet online

For people in Pennsylvania planning on finding a true love connection, online dating may be the way to go. From Tinder to Plenty of Fish to OKCupid or Match, online dating sites have proliferated as smartphones and tablets offer constant access to an array of apps and websites.

Academic research indicates not only that online dating is very popular, but also that it can actually lead to longer-lasting and happier marriages. While many people criticize online dating for promoting hook-up culture or constantly "shopping the market" for new relationships, data indicates that relationships forged via online dating can be especially strong and less vulnerable to divorce.

Baseball star sued for child support

Minnesota residents may be familiar with Miguel Cabrera's exploits on the baseball diamond. However, the Detroit Tigers star made news off the field earlier in 2017 when a woman filed a lawsuit in Orange County Superior Court. The suit alleges that Cabrera fathered a child with her in 2013 and in 2015, and it also alleges that he has not made sufficient support payments.

In 2017, Cabrera had reduced the amount he provided in monthly support to $6,400 per month. This took place after he took out a mortgage for a house worth $924,774 in April. Although Cabrera has reportedly paid support since 2013, he has demanded paternity tests and claims that the woman is trying to extort him. Under Florida law, Cabrera would owe the woman 7.5 percent of his salary per year in child support if the children are deemed to be his.

Could an unexpected transfer of money mean divorce?

When one spouse transfers or hides marital assets, this could be a sign that the spouse who is being secretive is considering filing for divorce. If this occurs, it may be a good idea for the other spouse to speak to an attorney and begin gathering financial records. Minnesota is not a community property state, which means that a judge will divide property in a divorce according to principles of fairness.

There may be other reasons that a spouse is transferring money to other accounts without his or her partner's consent. For example, perhaps one partner has been irresponsible with money in the past or has made bad investment decisions. Regardless of whether a sudden transfer of assets means an impending marital breakup, it is a good idea for anyone who is facing a situation like this to locate the transferred assets and create new accounts that require the permission of both partners for any future withdrawals.

Don't let your divorce affect your child's education

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Your child's education is a very important part of his or her childhood. You can't let the occurrences in your life have a negative impact on the schooling your child receives. However, children are often affected by their parents' divorce.

There are ways that parents can make the transition to the new way of life a bit easier. Here are some tips for helping your child achieve academic success:

Signs that a divorce might be the right decision

Some people in Minnesota might be struggling with the idea of a divorce. It can be difficult to ascertain whether this is the right step, but in some cases, people might decide that ending their marriage is necessary.

For example, a divorce may be the right decision if people are addicted to alcohol or drugs and will not get treatment for the problem. A person might realize the extent of the problem after the spouse has been arrested more than once and promised each time to enter treatment. What often happens is that the spouse goes for a little while and then relapses. A person may decide that despite loving the spouse, it is no longer possible to continue being married.

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