Divorces & Sieges: Both are long and unpleasant
In Minnesota, it can take a long time to get divorced. Depending on the county and the individual fa
cts of the case. For example in Blue Earth County it’s taking about 1 month for Court Administration to even open a file!
Because of budget cuts and everything delayed you can expect it to take anywhere from 2 months if all is decided and it goes very smoothly, to well over a year or even two if you need a custody evaluation, temporary relief hearing or have a trial. As an aside my longest divorce was over 36 months. Mentally you need to prepare for this, it’s not unlike being in a siege, you’re trapped in a castle, not able to leave, your future is uncertain and it can wear you down!
Most people don’t fully appreciate the mental aspect of a long, highly contested divorce. I’ve had clients who absolutely cannot handle a long-term custody battle and the other spouse ends up wearing them down. It’s terribly sad to see them wave the white flag of surrender, despite my best effort to tell them to hang in there just a little longer! They normally settle the case quickly, accepting anything the other spouse is willing to give them, always a much worse deal than if they could have stuck it out.
I know what you’re saying “Ok Jason, I hear you Divorces suck and can cause mental anguish! but what can I do?” Well, the key is knowing what to expect to go in to the divorce fully expecting it to take 18 months and if it gets done earlier, great! If not, well you are ready. Another thing is to be ready financially. You need to have the ability to pay your rent, mortgage and cable bill as well as the car payment, gas, buying food, etc.. Don’t expect this guy or gal to be nice and just want to help you out…you’re divorcing them for goodness sake!
You’ll hear talk from your lawyer about court time not being real-time and it’s true, nothing gets done the next day in the divorce world (that’s a whole other blog!) instead minor changes take a week, major changes take a month to get done, and you need to be ready financially for it!
So, now you know it will take a long time and if you can mentally prepare for this while your spouse cannot, you’ll be ahead of the game.