Do you have concerns about supporting yourself financially after divorce? In Minnesota, you can request spousal maintenance.

Learn about the process involved in requesting spousal support and the factors Minnesota courts use to make a determination.

Agreeing on spousal support

If you can agree on a fair support arrangement with your spouse, you can ask the judge to include this agreement in your final divorce decree. When you and your spouse cannot come to terms on this issue, you can ask the court to decide. You can request spousal support when you file for divorce or respond to your spouse’s divorce petition.

Requesting spousal support in court

To receive spousal maintenance in Minnesota, you must prove that you cannot meet your reasonable financial needs. You may also show that you need resources to pursue job training or education to become financially self-supporting.

The judge will not consider misconduct by either party when determining spousal support. However, he or she will consider:

  • Whether you left the workforce to care for children and the estimated value of lost earnings, benefits and job opportunities since you left
  • How you and your partner each contributed to marital assets, including both financial contributions, household maintenance and child care
  • Your age
  • Your physical and emotional health
  • The length of the marriage
  • The lifestyle you shared during the marriage
  • Your existing financial resources
  • Whether your former spouse can be financially self-supporting while paying spousal support

While the state does not have an exact formula to calculate child support, the court generally provides a higher amount of maintenance if you had a long marriage and if you earn significantly less than your spouse earns. The judge can award either temporary or permanent spousal maintenance or deny the request for maintenance.

Unless you and your spouse agree that neither party can modify a spousal support award, either party can petition the court to modify a temporary or permanent award.