Could an at-home DNA test be all it takes to connect you to your heritage? Or could it prompt unforeseen consequences — perhaps shaking the foundation on which your family is built? Both outcomes are possible. In Part 1 of our series on direct-to-consumer genetic testing, we explored a few of the unexpected implications these tests can have for couples and families. Now, we share additional stories of difficult circumstances brought about by DNA test results:
At one time, DNA testing kits seemed like little more than a science fiction concept. Today, however, these tests are not just available — they're easily accessible. Fueled, in part, by BOGO deals and other discounts, these tests are blowing up. As of late 2017, over 12 million people admitted to using these direct-to-consumer tests. Ancestry.com announced that over 1.5 million customers sought tests during the 2017 Black Friday weekend alone.
When picturing the financial implications of divorce, most spouses worry about their houses or alimony. Often, however, other issues warrant more attention. For some couples, retirement can be the most impacted aspect of divorce — and also, the most difficult to navigate. This is especially true in Minnesota, where courts make it clear that, when one spouse earns retirement benefits, the other spouse enjoys a "just and equitable" share, merely due to their status as married.
As you prepare to inform your children of your impending divorce, expect questions — most of which will be difficult to answer. How you respond to these queries may, in part, determine how well your children handle your divorce. A few top questions are highlighted below:
For families, the ideal divorce outcome includes happy children who maintain strong relationships with both parents. In turn, parents will hopefully enjoy an amicable relationship. All too often, however, divorce devolves into a power struggle, as evidenced by the increasingly prevalent issue of parental alienation.
Divorce is never easy, but mental health issues can add an additional layer of complication. Minnesota is a no-fault dissolution state, so illness (whether physical or mental in nature) cannot serve as grounds for divorce. Still, mental illness can play a significant role in several aspects of divorce — most notably, maintenance and child custody.
You recently took your case to the Minnesota Court of Appeals and, against all odds, emerged victorious. Problem is, what initially seemed like a success may no longer feel desirable. Chances are, your case was remanded back to the same judge who, in your opinion, messed up in the first place. Talk about frustrating! While it may seem that there is no rhyme or reason to this arrangement, there may be some wisdom in presenting the same case before the same judge on two different occasions — as we clarify below:
Amicable divorces may be the holy grail of dissolution, but often, couples bicker as much in divorce as they did while married. While some level of compromise should always be expected, you shouldn't be the only one making concessions. Follow these suggestions to increase the likelihood of changing your stubborn ex's mind:
Most divorces are uncontested, but that certainly doesn't imply that they're amicable. Even the kindest, most considerate spouses may find themselves lashing out at one another throughout the duration of the divorce process. It's only natural at such a stressful time — but this behavior can cause irreparable harm. Struggling to keep your cool? Follow these best practices to keep your divorce as amicable as possible:
Court costs and attorney fees are a natural concern when pursuing divorce via litigation. Financial fears sometimes push couples into making unacceptable compromises in mediation. Thankfully, there's another way. Section 518.14 of the Minnesota Statutes provides the basis for recovering need-based attorney fees, as we explain below: