Divorce can be just like a Minnesota winter for many couples going through the process. It is usually cold; it can negatively affect one's plans and it appears to last forever. While this may be true for many people, spring will eventually come. Divorce is not an easy process, especially when the couple is not amicable towards each other. But it is extremely important for couples with children to do what's right for the kids.
Marriage rates in the United States are at record lows, and more than half of those who do get married will get divorced. One of the most difficult aspects of the process is child custody. The question of who gets primary custody of the kids is, for most parents, the most consequential part of divorce.
Minnesota is a no-fault divorce state, which means that the parties do not need to prove the other spouse was at fault in ending the marriage. Even if another spouse displayed some form of marital misconduct such as infidelity, that is simply irrelevant to the divorce process. But when it comes to determining child custody, the court may look into marital misconduct to help determine who should get custody of the kids. For example, if one spouse has a past of being an alcoholic or a history of adultery, the court may use that against them to grant the other spouse custody of the children.
For most Minnesotans going through a divorce, determining child custody is the most important issue in the process. Whether it's sole physical custody or joint physical custody, every divorcing couple should consider what is best for their kids. An experienced family law attorney can provide guidance to a person struggling with a child custody issue.
Source: New York Observer, "No Divorce Is the New Divorce: Moms and Dads Navigate Messy Breakups in Marriage-less World," Rose Surnow, March 19, 2013