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Getting a divorce can be a long and challenging process, especially when there are disagreements over important issues like child custody, spousal support, and division of assets.

However, when both parties are willing to work together and agree on the terms of their divorce, the process can be much faster and more straightforward.

If you and your spouse are planning to divorce amicably, you may be wondering, “How long does it take to get a divorce if both parties agree in Minnesota?”

Below, we’ll walk through the typical timeline for an uncontested divorce in Minnesota from start to finish. We’ll also look at factors that can impact the length of time it takes to finalize a divorce.

How the Uncontested Divorce Process Works in Minnesota

There are two options for an uncontested divorce in Minnesota: summary dissolution and dissolution by joint petition.

To qualify for a summary dissolution, couples must meet strict requirements, including being married less than eight years, having no children, limited assets and debts, and no domestic abuse (Minn. Stat. § 518.195 (2021)). If the requirements are met, the couple fills out forms detailing their assets, debts, and agreement on property division. After filing the forms, if approved, the divorce will be finalized within 30 days without needing a court hearing.

If a couple does not qualify for summary dissolution because they have assets, children, or other disqualifying factors, they can file for dissolution by joint petition. This involves filling out forms detailing their agreements on property division, child custody, parenting time, child support, and other matters (Minn. Stat. § 518.13 (2021)). After filing, a judge reviews the agreement, especially custody provisions, to ensure it protects children’s interests. If approved, a dissolution decree is issued, in many cases, without requiring a hearing.

As you can see, an uncontested divorce in Minnesota, whether through joint petition or summary dissolution, still involves paperwork filings, financial disclosures, negotiation, and court approval. However, because both parties are already in agreement, the process moves forward more smoothly and quickly.

How Long Does an Uncontested Divorce Take?

An uncontested divorce can be completed in as little as 30 days if the parties are able to come to an agreement quickly and easily. In other cases, it may take up to 4-6 weeks or longer if issues like property division and spousal maintenance take more time to resolve.

Some issues that tend to lengthen the divorce process include:

  • Complex financial assets – Dividing extensive assets like real estate, businesses, and investments takes more time.
  • Retirement and pension division – Dividing retirement accounts involves paperwork, valuations, and approval from plan administrators which adds time.
  • Child-related issues – Developing detailed parenting time schedules and child support agreements can lengthen the process.
  • Spousal maintenance disputes – If spouses disagree on alimony, it takes longer to negotiate an acceptable maintenance arrangement.
  • Changes to agreements – flip-flopping on issues during the process adds delays.

Conversely, some scenarios that allow an uncontested divorce to be finalized more quickly include:

  • Minimal joint property – Having fewer shared assets to divide speeds up the asset division process.
  • No minor children – Not having custody, support or parenting time to resolve streamlines the process.
  • Pre-planned agreements – Having agreements mapped out ahead of time saves negotiation time.
  • Flexible schedules – Being available to handle the case diligently avoids delays.
  • Using a mediator – Mediators help spouses communicate effectively and reach resolution faster.

How to Speed Up The Divorce Process

If you want to finalize your amicable divorce as quickly as possible, here are some tips:

  1. Communicate regularly – Frequent communication with your spouse helps align on agreements faster.
  2. Organize financial documents – Having tax returns, bank statements, and other paperwork in order streamlines the process.
  3. Draft agreements upfront – Reaching agreements on all issues before filing helps avoid delays.
  4. Be willing to compromise – Negotiating in good faith and compromising when needed keeps things moving.
  5. Use a mediator – An experienced divorce mediator can help you reach agreements efficiently if you get stuck.
  6. Hire an attorney – A knowledgeable divorce attorney deals with cases like yours regularly and can expedite the process.
  7. Stay focused – Keep the end goal in mind, and don’t get sidetracked arguing over small details.
  8. Avoid unnecessary disputes – Pick your battles wisely. Don’t argue over insignificant assets or issues that won’t impact your life after the divorce.
  9. Line up a process server – Having a process server ready to serve papers immediately avoids lags.
  10. Submit paperwork promptly – Complete and return any affidavits, agreements, or other paperwork the court requires as soon as possible.

Staying organized, proactive, and focused on finalizing the divorce can help minimize delays and resolve your case faster.

Working With a Minneapolis Divorce Attorney

Divorcing amicably still involves navigating complex legal processes. The experienced family law attorneys at Martine Law help expedite even the most complex, uncontested divorce cases in Minnesota.

If you and your spouse are looking to finalize your divorce quickly, we can file the paperwork, draft enforceable agreements, and get your decree entered efficiently.

To discuss your options for a faster divorce process, contact us to schedule a consultation. We also have office locations in Saint Paul, Lake Elmo, Maple Grove, White Bear Lake, and Eagan for your convenience.