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Minnesota Session Laws - 2001, Regular Session

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

                            CHAPTER 51-H.F.No. 1260 
                  An act relating to family law; neutralizing certain 
                  terminology; amending Minnesota Statutes 2000, 
                  sections 518.131, subdivision 2; 518.155; 518.171, 
                  subdivisions 1, 4, 5, 6, and 8; 518.175; 518.1751, 
                  subdivision 1b; 518.176, subdivision 1; 518.18; 
                  518.55, subdivision 1; 518.551, subdivisions 5 and 5e; 
                  518.612; and 518.64, subdivision 2. 
        BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
           Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.131, 
        subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 2.  [IMPERMISSIBLE ORDERS.] No temporary order shall: 
           (a) Deny parenting time to a noncustodial parent unless the 
        court finds that the parenting time by the noncustodial parent 
        is likely to cause physical or emotional harm to the child; 
           (b) Exclude a party from the family home of the parties 
        unless the court finds that physical or emotional harm to one of 
        the parties or to the children of the parties is likely to 
        result, or that the exclusion is reasonable in the 
        circumstances; or 
           (c) Vacate or modify an order granted under section 
        518B.01, subdivision 6, paragraph (a), clause (1), restraining 
        an abusing party from committing acts of domestic abuse, except 
        that the court may hear a motion for modification of an order 
        for protection concurrently with a proceeding for dissolution of 
        marriage upon notice of motion and motion.  The notice required 
        by court rule shall not be waived.  If the proceedings are 
        consolidated and the motion to modify is granted, a separate 
        order for modification of an order for protection shall be 
        issued. 
           Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.155, is 
        amended to read: 
           518.155 [CUSTODY DETERMINATIONS.] 
           Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, a court in which a 
        proceeding for dissolution, legal separation, or child custody 
        has been commenced shall not issue, revise, modify or amend any 
        order, pursuant to sections 518.131, 518.165, 518.168, 518.17, 
        518.175 or 518.18, which affects the custody of a minor child or 
        the parenting time of a noncustodial parent unless the court has 
        jurisdiction over the matter pursuant to the provisions of 
        chapter 518D. 
           Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.171, 
        subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
           Subdivision 1.  [ORDER.] Compliance with this section 
        constitutes compliance with a qualified medical child support 
        order as described in the federal Employee Retirement Income 
        Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) as amended by the federal Omnibus 
        Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993 (OBRA).  
           (a) Every child support order must: 
           (1) expressly assign or reserve the responsibility for 
        maintaining medical insurance for the minor children and the 
        division of uninsured medical and dental costs; and 
           (2) contain the names, last known addresses, and social 
        security number numbers of the custodial parent and noncustodial 
        parent, parents of the dependents unless the court prohibits the 
        inclusion of an address or social security number and orders the 
        custodial parent parents to provide the address their addresses 
        and social security number numbers to the administrator of the 
        health plan.  The court shall order the party parent with the 
        better group dependent health and dental insurance coverage or 
        health insurance plan to name the minor child as beneficiary on 
        any health and dental insurance plan that is available to 
        the party parent on: 
           (i) a group basis; 
           (ii) through an employer or union; or 
           (iii) through a group health plan governed under the ERISA 
        and included within the definitions relating to health plans 
        found in section 62A.011, 62A.048, or 62E.06, subdivision 2.  
        "Health insurance" or "health insurance coverage" as used in 
        this section means coverage that is comparable to or better than 
        a number two qualified plan as defined in section 62E.06, 
        subdivision 2.  "Health insurance" or "health insurance 
        coverage" as used in this section does not include medical 
        assistance provided under chapter 256, 256B, 256J, 256K, or 256D.
           (b) If the court finds that dependent health or dental 
        insurance is not available to the obligor or obligee on a group 
        basis or through an employer or union, or that group insurance 
        is not accessible to the obligee, the court may require the 
        obligor (1) to obtain other dependent health or dental 
        insurance, (2) to be liable for reasonable and necessary medical 
        or dental expenses of the child, or (3) to pay no less than $50 
        per month to be applied to the medical and dental expenses of 
        the children or to the cost of health insurance dependent 
        coverage. 
           (c) If the court finds that the available dependent health 
        or dental insurance does not pay all the reasonable and 
        necessary medical or dental expenses of the child, including any 
        existing or anticipated extraordinary medical expenses, and the 
        court finds that the obligor has the financial ability to 
        contribute to the payment of these medical or dental expenses, 
        the court shall require the obligor to be liable for all or a 
        portion of the medical or dental expenses of the child not 
        covered by the required health or dental plan.  Medical and 
        dental expenses include, but are not limited to, necessary 
        orthodontia and eye care, including prescription lenses. 
           (d) Unless otherwise agreed by the parties and approved by 
        the court, if the court finds that the obligee is not receiving 
        public assistance for the child and has the financial ability to 
        contribute to the cost of medical and dental expenses for the 
        child, including the cost of insurance, the court shall order 
        the obligee and obligor to each assume a portion of these 
        expenses based on their proportionate share of their total net 
        income as defined in section 518.54, subdivision 6. 
           (e) Payments ordered under this section are subject to 
        section 518.6111.  An obligee who fails to apply payments 
        received to the medical expenses of the dependents may be found 
        in contempt of this order. 
           Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.171, 
        subdivision 4, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 4.  [EFFECT OF ORDER.] (a) The order is binding on 
        the employer or union and the health and dental insurance plan 
        when service under subdivision 3 has been made.  In the case of 
        an obligor who changes employment and is required to provide 
        health coverage for the child, a new employer that provides 
        health care coverage shall enroll the child in the obligor's 
        health plan upon receipt of an order or notice for health 
        insurance, unless the obligor contests the enrollment.  The 
        obligor may contest the enrollment on the limited grounds that 
        the enrollment is improper due to mistake of fact or that the 
        enrollment meets the requirements of section 518.64, subdivision 
        2.  If the obligor chooses to contest the enrollment, the 
        obligor must do so no later than 15 days after the employer 
        notifies the obligor of the enrollment, by doing all of the 
        following: 
           (1) filing a request for contested hearing according to 
        section 484.702; 
           (2) serving a copy of the request for contested hearing 
        upon the public authority and the obligee; and 
           (3) securing a date for the contested hearing no later than 
        45 days after the notice of enrollment. 
           (b) The enrollment must remain in place during the time 
        period in which the obligor contests the withholding. 
        An employer or union that is included under ERISA may not deny 
        enrollment based on exclusionary clauses described in section 
        62A.048.  Upon application of the obligor according to the order 
        or notice, the employer or union and its health and dental 
        insurance plan shall enroll the minor child as a beneficiary in 
        the group insurance plan and withhold any required premium from 
        the obligor's income or wages.  If more than one plan is offered 
        by the employer or union, the child shall be enrolled in the 
        least costly health insurance plan otherwise available to the 
        obligor that is comparable to a number two qualified plan.  If 
        the obligor is not enrolled in a health insurance plan, the 
        employer or union shall also enroll the obligor in the chosen 
        plan if enrollment of the obligor is necessary in order to 
        obtain dependent coverage under the plan.  Enrollment of 
        dependents and the obligor shall be immediate and not dependent 
        upon open enrollment periods.  Enrollment is not subject to the 
        underwriting policies described in section 62A.048.  
           (c) An employer or union that willfully fails to comply 
        with the order is liable for any health or dental expenses 
        incurred by the dependents during the period of time the 
        dependents were eligible to be enrolled in the insurance 
        program, and for any other premium costs incurred because the 
        employer or union willfully failed to comply with the order.  An 
        employer or union that fails to comply with the order is subject 
        to contempt under section 518.615 and is also subject to a fine 
        of $500 to be paid to the obligee or public authority.  Fines 
        paid to the public authority are designated for child support 
        enforcement services. 
           (d) Failure of the obligor to execute any documents 
        necessary to enroll the dependent in the group health and dental 
        insurance plan will not affect the obligation of the employer or 
        union and group health and dental insurance plan to enroll the 
        dependent in a plan.  Information and authorization provided by 
        the public authority responsible for child support enforcement, 
        or by the custodial parent obligee or guardian, is valid for the 
        purposes of meeting enrollment requirements of the health plan.  
        The insurance coverage for a child eligible under subdivision 5 
        shall not be terminated except as authorized in subdivision 5. 
           Sec. 5.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.171, 
        subdivision 5, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 5.  [ELIGIBLE CHILD.] A minor child that an obligor 
        is required to cover as a beneficiary pursuant to this section 
        is eligible for insurance coverage as a dependent of the obligor 
        until the child is emancipated or until further order of the 
        court.  The health or dental insurance carrier or employer may 
        not disenroll or eliminate coverage of the child unless the 
        health or dental insurance carrier or employer is provided 
        satisfactory written evidence that the court order is no longer 
        in effect, or the child is or will be enrolled in comparable 
        health coverage through another health or dental insurance plan 
        that will take effect no later than the effective date of the 
        disenrollment, or the employer has eliminated family health and 
        dental coverage for all of its employees, or that the required 
        premium has not been paid by or on behalf of the child.  If 
        disenrollment or elimination of coverage of a child under this 
        subdivision is based upon nonpayment of premium, the health or 
        dental insurance plan must provide 30 days' written notice to 
        the child's nonobligor parent obligee prior to the disenrollment 
        or elimination of coverage. 
           Sec. 6.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.171, 
        subdivision 6, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 6.  [PLAN REIMBURSEMENT; CORRESPONDENCE AND NOTICE.] 
        (a) The signature of the custodial either parent of the insured 
        dependent is a valid authorization to a health or dental 
        insurance plan for purposes of processing an insurance 
        reimbursement payment to the provider of the medical services or 
        to the custodial parent if who has prepaid for the medical 
        services have been prepaid by the custodial parent. 
           (b) The health or dental insurance plan shall send copies 
        of all correspondence regarding the insurance coverage to both 
        parents.  When an order for dependent insurance coverage is in 
        effect and the obligor's employment is terminated, or the 
        insurance coverage is terminated, the health or dental insurance 
        plan shall notify the obligee within ten days of the termination 
        date with notice of conversion privileges. 
           Sec. 7.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.171, 
        subdivision 8, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 8.  [OBLIGOR LIABILITY.] (a) An obligor who fails to 
        maintain medical or dental insurance for the benefit of the 
        children as ordered or fails to provide other medical support as 
        ordered is liable to the obligee for any medical or dental 
        expenses incurred from the effective date of the court order, 
        including health and dental insurance premiums paid by the 
        obligee because of the obligor's failure to obtain coverage as 
        ordered.  Proof of failure to maintain insurance or 
        noncompliance with an order to provide other medical support 
        constitutes a showing of increased need by the obligee pursuant 
        to section 518.64 and provides a basis for a modification of the 
        obligor's child support order. 
           (b) Payments for services rendered to the dependents that 
        are directed to the obligor, in the form of reimbursement by the 
        health or dental insurance carrier or employer, must be endorsed 
        over to and forwarded to the vendor or custodial parent obligee 
        or public authority when the reimbursement is not owed to the 
        obligor.  An obligor retaining insurance reimbursement not owed 
        to the obligor may be found in contempt of this order and held 
        liable for the amount of the reimbursement.  Upon written 
        verification by the health or dental insurance carrier or 
        employer of the amounts paid to the obligor, the reimbursement 
        amount is subject to all enforcement remedies available under 
        subdivision 10, including income withholding pursuant to section 
        518.6111.  The monthly amount to be withheld until the 
        obligation is satisfied is 20 percent of the original debt or 
        $50, whichever is greater. 
           Sec. 8.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.175, is 
        amended to read: 
           518.175 [VISITATION OF CHILDREN AND NONCUSTODIAL 
        PARENT PARENTING TIME.] 
           Subdivision 1.  [GENERAL.] (a) In all proceedings for 
        dissolution or legal separation, subsequent to the commencement 
        of the proceeding and continuing thereafter during the minority 
        of the child, the court shall, upon the request of either 
        parent, grant such parenting time on behalf of the child and 
        noncustodial a parent as will enable the child and the 
        noncustodial parent to maintain a child to parent relationship 
        that will be in the best interests of the child. 
           If the court finds, after a hearing, that parenting 
        time with a parent is likely to endanger the child's physical or 
        emotional health or impair the child's emotional development, 
        the court shall restrict parenting time with the noncustodial 
        that parent as to time, place, duration, or supervision and may 
        deny parenting time entirely, as the circumstances warrant.  The 
        court shall consider the age of the child and the child's 
        relationship with the noncustodial parent prior to the 
        commencement of the proceeding. 
           A parent's failure to pay support because of the parent's 
        inability to do so shall not be sufficient cause for denial of 
        parenting time. 
           (b) The court may provide that a law enforcement officer or 
        other appropriate person will accompany a party seeking to 
        enforce or comply with parenting time. 
           (c) Upon request of either party, to the extent practicable 
        an order for parenting time must include a specific schedule for 
        parenting time, including the frequency and duration of 
        visitation and visitation during holidays and vacations, unless 
        parenting time is restricted, denied, or reserved. 
           (d) The court administrator shall provide a form for a pro 
        se motion regarding parenting time disputes, which includes 
        provisions for indicating the relief requested, an affidavit in 
        which the party may state the facts of the dispute, and a brief 
        description of the parenting time expeditor process under 
        section 518.1751.  The form may not include a request for a 
        change of custody.  The court shall provide instructions on 
        serving and filing the motion. 
           Subd. 1a.  [DOMESTIC ABUSE; SUPERVISED PARENTING TIME.] (a) 
        If a custodial parent requests supervised parenting time under 
        subdivision 1 or 5 and an order for protection under chapter 
        518B or a similar law of another state is in effect against 
        the noncustodial other parent to protect the custodial parent 
        with whom the child resides or the child, the judge or judicial 
        officer must consider the order for protection in making a 
        decision regarding parenting time. 
           (b) The state court administrator, in consultation with 
        representatives of custodial and noncustodial parents and other 
        interested persons, shall develop standards to be met by persons 
        who are responsible for supervising parenting time.  Either 
        parent may challenge the appropriateness of an individual chosen 
        by the court to supervise parenting time. 
           Subd. 2.  [RIGHTS OF CHILDREN AND NONCUSTODIAL PARENT 
        PARENTS.] Upon the request of either parent, the court may 
        inform any child of the parties, if eight years of age or older, 
        or otherwise of an age of suitable comprehension, of the rights 
        of the child and the noncustodial each parent under the order or 
        decree or any substantial amendment thereof.  The custodial 
        parent with whom the child resides shall present the child for 
        parenting time with the noncustodial other parent, at such times 
        as the court directs. 
           Subd. 3.  [MOVE TO ANOTHER STATE.] The custodial parent 
        with whom the child resides shall not move the residence of the 
        child to another state except upon order of the court or with 
        the consent of the noncustodial other parent, when if the 
        noncustodial other parent has been given parenting time by the 
        decree.  If the purpose of the move is to interfere with 
        parenting time given to the noncustodial other parent by the 
        decree, the court shall not permit the child's residence to be 
        moved to another state. 
           Subd. 5.  [MODIFICATION OF PARENTING PLAN OR ORDER FOR 
        PARENTING TIME.] If modification would serve the best interests 
        of the child, the court shall modify the decision-making 
        provisions of a parenting plan or an order granting or denying 
        parenting time, if the modification would not change the child's 
        primary residence.  Except as provided in section 631.52, the 
        court may not restrict parenting time unless it finds that:  
           (1) parenting time is likely to endanger the child's 
        physical or emotional health or impair the child's emotional 
        development; or 
           (2) the noncustodial parent has chronically and 
        unreasonably failed to comply with court-ordered parenting time. 
           If the custodial a parent makes specific allegations that 
        parenting time by the other parent places the custodial parent 
        or child in danger of harm, the court shall hold a hearing at 
        the earliest possible time to determine the need to modify the 
        order granting parenting time.  Consistent with subdivision 1a, 
        the court may require a third party, including the local social 
        services agency, to supervise the parenting time or may restrict 
        a parent's parenting time if necessary to protect the 
        custodial other parent or child from harm.  In addition, If 
        there is an existing order for protection governing the parties, 
        the court shall consider the use of an independent, neutral 
        exchange location for parenting time. 
           Subd. 6.  [REMEDIES.] (a) The court may provide for one or 
        more of the following remedies for denial of or interference 
        with court-ordered parenting time as provided under this 
        subdivision.  All parenting time orders must include notice of 
        the provisions of this subdivision. 
           (b) If the court finds that a person has been deprived of 
        court-ordered parenting time, the court shall order the 
        custodial parent who has interfered to permit additional allow 
        compensatory parenting time to compensate for the parenting time 
        of which the person was deprived the other parent or the court 
        shall make specific findings as to why a request for 
        compensatory parenting time is denied.  If compensatory 
        parenting time is awarded, additional parenting time must be: 
           (1) at least of the same type and duration as the deprived 
        parenting time and, at the discretion of the court, may be in 
        excess of or of a different type than the deprived parenting 
        time; 
           (2) taken within one year after the deprived parenting 
        time; and 
           (3) at a time acceptable to the person parent deprived of 
        parenting time. 
           (c) If the court finds that a party has wrongfully failed 
        to comply with a parenting time order or a binding agreement or 
        decision under section 518.1751, the court may: 
           (1) impose a civil penalty of up to $500 on the party; 
           (2) require the party to post a bond with the court for a 
        specified period of time to secure the party's compliance; 
           (3) award reasonable attorney's fees and costs; 
           (4) require the party who violated the parenting time order 
        or binding agreement or decision of the parenting time expeditor 
        to reimburse the other party for costs incurred as a result of 
        the violation of the order or agreement or decision; or 
           (5) award any other remedy that the court finds to be in 
        the best interests of the children involved. 
           A civil penalty imposed under this paragraph must be 
        deposited in the county general fund and must be used to fund 
        the costs of a parenting time expeditor program in a county with 
        this program.  In other counties, the civil penalty must be 
        deposited in the state general fund. 
           (d) If the court finds that a party has been denied 
        parenting time and has incurred expenses in connection with the 
        denied parenting time, the court may require the party who 
        denied parenting time to post a bond in favor of the other party 
        in the amount of prepaid expenses associated with upcoming 
        planned parenting time. 
           (e) Proof of an unwarranted denial of or interference with 
        duly established parenting time may constitute contempt of court 
        and may be sufficient cause for reversal of custody. 
           Subd. 7.  [GRANDPARENT VISITATION.] In all proceedings for 
        dissolution or legal separation, after the commencement of the 
        proceeding or at any time after completion of the proceedings, 
        and continuing during the minority of the child, the court may 
        make an order granting visitation rights to grandparents under 
        section 257.022, subdivision 2. 
           Subd. 8.  [ADDITIONAL PARENTING TIME FOR CHILD CARE OF 
        CHILD BY NONCUSTODIAL PARENT.] The court may allow additional 
        parenting time to the noncustodial a parent to provide child 
        care while the custodial other parent is working if this 
        arrangement is reasonable and in the best interests of the 
        child, as defined in section 518.17, subdivision 1.  In 
        addition, the court shall consider: 
           (1) the ability of the parents to cooperate; 
           (2) methods for resolving disputes regarding the care of 
        the child, and the parents' willingness to use those methods; 
        and 
           (3) whether domestic abuse, as defined in section 518B.01, 
        has occurred between the parties. 
           Sec. 9.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.1751, 
        subdivision 1b, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 1b.  [PURPOSE; DEFINITIONS.] (a) The purpose of a 
        parenting time expeditor is to resolve parenting time disputes 
        by enforcing, interpreting, clarifying, and addressing 
        circumstances not specifically addressed by an existing 
        parenting time order and, if appropriate, to make a 
        determination as to whether the existing parenting time order 
        has been violated.  A parenting time expeditor may be appointed 
        to resolve a one-time parenting time dispute or to provide 
        ongoing parenting time dispute resolution services. 
           (b) For purposes of this section, "parenting time dispute" 
        means a disagreement among parties about parenting time with a 
        child, including a dispute about an anticipated denial of future 
        scheduled parenting time.  "Parenting time dispute" includes a 
        claim by a custodial parent that a noncustodial the other parent 
        is not spending time with a child as well as a claim by 
        a noncustodial parent that a custodial the other parent is 
        denying or interfering with parenting time. 
           (c) A "parenting time expeditor" is a neutral person 
        authorized to use a mediation-arbitration process to resolve 
        parenting time disputes.  A parenting time expeditor shall 
        attempt to resolve a parenting time dispute by facilitating 
        negotiations between the parties to promote settlement and, if 
        it becomes apparent that the dispute cannot be resolved by an 
        agreement of the parties, the parenting time expeditor shall 
        make a decision resolving the dispute. 
           Sec. 10.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.176, 
        subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
           Subdivision 1.  [LIMITS ON CUSTODIAN'S PARENT'S AUTHORITY; 
        HEARING.] Except as otherwise agreed by the parties in writing 
        at the time of the custody order, the custodian parent with whom 
        the child resides may determine the child's upbringing, 
        including education, health care, and religious training, unless 
        the court after hearing, finds, upon motion by the noncustodial 
        other parent, that in the absence of a specific limitation of 
        the custodian's authority of the parent with whom the child 
        resides, the child's physical or emotional health is likely to 
        be endangered or the child's emotional development impaired. 
           Sec. 11.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.18, is 
        amended to read: 
           518.18 [MODIFICATION OF ORDER.] 
           (a) Unless agreed to in writing by the parties, no motion 
        to modify a custody order or parenting plan may be made earlier 
        than one year after the date of the entry of a decree of 
        dissolution or legal separation containing a provision dealing 
        with custody, except in accordance with paragraph (c). 
           (b) If a motion for modification has been heard, whether or 
        not it was granted, unless agreed to in writing by the parties 
        no subsequent motion may be filed within two years after 
        disposition of the prior motion on its merits, except in 
        accordance with paragraph (c). 
           (c) The time limitations prescribed in paragraphs (a) and 
        (b) shall not prohibit a motion to modify a custody order or 
        parenting plan if the court finds that there is persistent and 
        willful denial or interference with parenting time, or has 
        reason to believe that the child's present environment may 
        endanger the child's physical or emotional health or impair the 
        child's emotional development. 
           (d) If the court has jurisdiction to determine child 
        custody matters, the court shall not modify a prior custody 
        order or a parenting plan provision which specifies the child's 
        primary residence unless it finds, upon the basis of facts, 
        including unwarranted denial of, or interference with, a duly 
        established parenting time schedule, that have arisen since the 
        prior order or that were unknown to the court at the time of the 
        prior order, that a change has occurred in the circumstances of 
        the child or the parties and that the modification is necessary 
        to serve the best interests of the child.  In applying these 
        standards the court shall retain the custody arrangement or the 
        parenting plan provision specifying the child's primary 
        residence that was established by the prior order unless: 
           (i) the court finds that a change in the custody 
        arrangement or primary residence is in the best interests of the 
        child and the parties previously agreed, in a writing approved 
        by a court, to apply the best interests standard in section 
        518.17 or 257.025, as applicable; and, with respect to 
        agreements approved by a court on or after April 28, 2000, both 
        parties were represented by counsel when the agreement was 
        approved or the court found the parties were fully informed, the 
        agreement was voluntary, and the parties were aware of its 
        implications; 
           (ii) both parties agree to the modification; 
           (iii) the child has been integrated into the family of the 
        petitioner with the consent of the other party; or 
           (iv) the child's present environment endangers the child's 
        physical or emotional health or impairs the child's emotional 
        development and the harm likely to be caused by a change of 
        environment is outweighed by the advantage of a change to the 
        child.  
           In addition, a court may modify a custody order or 
        parenting plan under section 631.52.  
           (e) In deciding whether to modify a prior joint custody 
        order, the court shall apply the standards set forth in 
        paragraph (d) unless:  (1) the parties agree in writing to the 
        application of a different standard, or (2) the party seeking 
        the modification is asking the court for permission to move the 
        residence of the child to another state. 
           (f) If a custodial parent has been granted sole physical 
        custody of a minor and the child subsequently lives with the 
        noncustodial other parent, and temporary sole physical custody 
        has been approved by the court or by a court-appointed referee, 
        the court may suspend the noncustodial parent's obligor's child 
        support obligation pending the final custody determination.  The 
        court's order denying the suspension of child support must 
        include a written explanation of the reasons why continuation of 
        the child support obligation would be in the best interests of 
        the child. 
           Sec. 12.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.55, 
        subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
           Subdivision 1.  [CONTENTS OF ORDER.] Every award of 
        maintenance or support money in a judgment of dissolution or 
        legal separation shall clearly designate whether the same is 
        maintenance or support money, or what part of the award is 
        maintenance and what part is support money.  An award of 
        payments from future income or earnings of the custodial parent 
        with whom the child resides is presumed to be maintenance and an 
        award of payments from the future income or earnings of 
        the noncustodial parent with whom the child does not reside is 
        presumed to be support money, unless otherwise designated by the 
        court.  In a judgment of dissolution or legal separation the 
        court may determine, as one of the issues of the case, whether 
        or not either spouse is entitled to an award of maintenance 
        notwithstanding that no award is then made, or it may reserve 
        jurisdiction of the issue of maintenance for determination at a 
        later date. 
           Sec. 13.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.551, 
        subdivision 5, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 5.  [NOTICE TO PUBLIC AUTHORITY; GUIDELINES.] (a) The 
        petitioner shall notify the public authority of all proceedings 
        for dissolution, legal separation, determination of parentage or 
        for the custody of a child, if either party is receiving public 
        assistance or applies for it subsequent to the commencement of 
        the proceeding.  The notice must contain the full names of the 
        parties to the proceeding, their social security account 
        numbers, and their birth dates.  After receipt of the notice, 
        the court shall set child support as provided in this 
        subdivision.  The court may order either or both parents owing a 
        duty of support to a child of the marriage to pay an amount 
        reasonable or necessary for the child's support, without regard 
        to marital misconduct.  The court shall approve a child support 
        stipulation of the parties if each party is represented by 
        independent counsel, unless the stipulation does not meet the 
        conditions of paragraph (i).  In other cases the court shall 
        determine and order child support in a specific dollar amount in 
        accordance with the guidelines and the other factors set forth 
        in paragraph (c) and any departure therefrom.  The court may 
        also order the obligor to pay child support in the form of a 
        percentage share of the obligor's net bonuses, commissions, or 
        other forms of compensation, in addition to, or if the obligor 
        receives no base pay, in lieu of, an order for a specific dollar 
        amount. 
           (b) The court shall derive a specific dollar amount for 
        child support by multiplying the obligor's net income by the 
        percentage indicated by the following guidelines:  
        Net Income Per            Number of Children 
        Month of Obligor 
                      1     2     3     4     5     6    7 or 
                                                         more 
        $550 and Below     Order based on the ability of the 
                           obligor to provide support  
                           at these income levels, or at higher  
                           levels, if the obligor has 
                           the earning ability. 
        $551 - 600   16%   19%   22%   25%   28%   30%   32% 
        $601 - 650   17%   21%   24%   27%   29%   32%   34% 
        $651 - 700   18%   22%   25%   28%   31%   34%   36% 
        $701 - 750   19%   23%   27%   30%   33%   36%   38% 
        $751 - 800   20%   24%   28%   31%   35%   38%   40% 
        $801 - 850   21%   25%   29%   33%   36%   40%   42% 
        $851 - 900   22%   27%   31%   34%   38%   41%   44% 
        $901 - 950   23%   28%   32%   36%   40%   43%   46% 
        $951 - 1000  24%   29%   34%   38%   41%   45%   48% 
        $1001- 5000  25%   30%   35%   39%   43%   47%   50% 
        or the amount 
        in effect under
        paragraph (k)
           Guidelines for support for an obligor with a monthly income 
        in excess of the income limit currently in effect under 
        paragraph (k) shall be the same dollar amounts as provided for 
        in the guidelines for an obligor with a monthly income equal to 
        the limit in effect. 
        Net Income defined as: 
                 
                 Total monthly 
                 income less           *(i) Federal Income Tax 
                                      *(ii) State Income Tax 
                                      (iii) Social Security
                                             Deductions 
                                       (iv) Reasonable
                                             Pension Deductions
                 *Standard 
                 Deductions apply-      (v) Union Dues 
                 use of tax tables     (vi) Cost of Dependent Health
                 recommended                 Insurance Coverage  
                                      (vii) Cost of Individual or Group
                                             Health/Hospitalization
                                             Coverage or an        
                                             Amount for Actual 
                                             Medical Expenses   
                                     (viii) A Child Support or  
                                             Maintenance Order that is
                                             Currently Being Paid. 
           "Net income" does not include: 
           (1) the income of the obligor's spouse, but does include 
        in-kind payments received by the obligor in the course of 
        employment, self-employment, or operation of a business if the 
        payments reduce the obligor's living expenses; or 
           (2) compensation received by a party for employment in 
        excess of a 40-hour work week, provided that: 
           (i) support is nonetheless ordered in an amount at least 
        equal to the guidelines amount based on income not excluded 
        under this clause; and 
           (ii) the party demonstrates, and the court finds, that: 
           (A) the excess employment began after the filing of the 
        petition for dissolution; 
           (B) the excess employment reflects an increase in the work 
        schedule or hours worked over that of the two years immediately 
        preceding the filing of the petition; 
           (C) the excess employment is voluntary and not a condition 
        of employment; 
           (D) the excess employment is in the nature of additional, 
        part-time or overtime employment compensable by the hour or 
        fraction of an hour; and 
           (E) the party's compensation structure has not been changed 
        for the purpose of affecting a support or maintenance obligation.
           The court shall review the work-related and 
        education-related child care costs paid and shall allocate the 
        costs to each parent in proportion to each parent's net income, 
        as determined under this subdivision, after the transfer of 
        child support and spousal maintenance, unless the allocation 
        would be substantially unfair to either parent.  There is a 
        presumption of substantial unfairness if after the sum total of 
        child support, spousal maintenance, and child care costs is 
        subtracted from the noncustodial parent's obligor's income, the 
        income is at or below 100 percent of the federal poverty 
        guidelines.  The cost of child care for purposes of this 
        paragraph is 75 percent of the actual cost paid for child care, 
        to reflect the approximate value of state and federal tax 
        credits available to the custodial parent obligee.  The actual 
        cost paid for child care is the total amount received by the 
        child care provider for the child or children of the obligor 
        from the obligee or any public agency.  The court shall require 
        verification of employment or school attendance and 
        documentation of child care expenses from the obligee and the 
        public agency, if applicable.  If child care expenses fluctuate 
        during the year because of seasonal employment or school 
        attendance of the obligee or extended periods of parenting time 
        with the obligor, the court shall determine child care expenses 
        based on an average monthly cost.  The amount allocated for 
        child care expenses is considered child support but is not 
        subject to a cost-of-living adjustment under section 518.641.  
        The amount allocated for child care expenses terminates when 
        either party notifies the public authority that the child care 
        costs have ended and without any legal action on the part of 
        either party.  The public authority shall verify the information 
        received under this provision before authorizing termination.  
        The termination is effective as of the date of the 
        notification.  In other cases where there is a substantial 
        increase or decrease in child care expenses, the parties may 
        modify the order under section 518.64. 
           The court may allow the noncustodial obligor parent to care 
        for the child while the custodial obligee parent is working, as 
        provided in section 518.175, subdivision 8.  Allowing the 
        noncustodial parent to care for the child under section 518.175, 
        subdivision 8, but this is not a reason to deviate from the 
        guidelines. 
           (c) In addition to the child support guidelines, the court 
        shall take into consideration the following factors in setting 
        or modifying child support or in determining whether to deviate 
        from the guidelines: 
           (1) all earnings, income, and resources of the parents, 
        including real and personal property, but excluding income from 
        excess employment of the obligor or obligee that meets the 
        criteria of paragraph (b), clause (2)(ii); 
           (2) the financial needs and resources, physical and 
        emotional condition, and educational needs of the child or 
        children to be supported; 
           (3) the standard of living the child would have enjoyed had 
        the marriage not been dissolved, but recognizing that the 
        parents now have separate households; 
           (4) which parent receives the income taxation dependency 
        exemption and what financial benefit the parent receives from 
        it; 
           (5) the parents' debts as provided in paragraph (d); and 
           (6) the obligor's receipt of public assistance under the 
        AFDC program formerly codified under sections 256.72 to 256.82 
        or 256B.01 to 256B.40 and chapter 256J or 256K.  
           (d) In establishing or modifying a support obligation, the 
        court may consider debts owed to private creditors, but only if: 
           (1) the right to support has not been assigned under 
        section 256.741; 
           (2) the court determines that the debt was reasonably 
        incurred for necessary support of the child or parent or for the 
        necessary generation of income.  If the debt was incurred for 
        the necessary generation of income, the court shall consider 
        only the amount of debt that is essential to the continuing 
        generation of income; and 
           (3) the party requesting a departure produces a sworn 
        schedule of the debts, with supporting documentation, showing 
        goods or services purchased, the recipient of them, the amount 
        of the original debt, the outstanding balance, the monthly 
        payment, and the number of months until the debt will be fully 
        paid. 
           (e) Any schedule prepared under paragraph (d), clause (3), 
        shall contain a statement that the debt will be fully paid after 
        the number of months shown in the schedule, barring emergencies 
        beyond the party's control.  
           (f) Any further departure below the guidelines that is 
        based on a consideration of debts owed to private creditors 
        shall not exceed 18 months in duration, after which the support 
        shall increase automatically to the level ordered by the court.  
        Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit one or 
        more step increases in support to reflect debt retirement during 
        the 18-month period.  
           (g) If payment of debt is ordered pursuant to this section, 
        the payment shall be ordered to be in the nature of child 
        support.  
           (h) Nothing shall preclude the court from receiving 
        evidence on the above factors to determine if the guidelines 
        should be exceeded or modified in a particular case.  
           (i) The guidelines in this subdivision are a rebuttable 
        presumption and shall be used in all cases when establishing or 
        modifying child support.  If the court does not deviate from the 
        guidelines, the court shall make written findings concerning the 
        amount of the obligor's income used as the basis for the 
        guidelines calculation and any other significant evidentiary 
        factors affecting the determination of child support.  If the 
        court deviates from the guidelines, the court shall make written 
        findings giving the amount of support calculated under the 
        guidelines, the reasons for the deviation, and shall 
        specifically address the criteria in paragraph (c) and how the 
        deviation serves the best interest of the child.  The court may 
        deviate from the guidelines if both parties agree and the court 
        makes written findings that it is in the best interests of the 
        child, except that in cases where child support payments are 
        assigned to the public agency under section 256.741, the court 
        may deviate downward only as provided in paragraph (j).  Nothing 
        in this paragraph prohibits the court from deviating in other 
        cases.  The provisions of this paragraph apply whether or not 
        the parties are each represented by independent counsel and have 
        entered into a written agreement.  The court shall review 
        stipulations presented to it for conformity to the guidelines 
        and the court is not required to conduct a hearing, but the 
        parties shall provide the documentation of earnings required 
        under subdivision 5b. 
           (j) If the child support payments are assigned to the 
        public agency under section 256.741, the court may not deviate 
        downward from the child support guidelines unless the court 
        specifically finds that the failure to deviate downward would 
        impose an extreme hardship on the obligor. 
           (k) The dollar amount of the income limit for application 
        of the guidelines must be adjusted on July 1 of every 
        even-numbered year to reflect cost-of-living changes.  The 
        supreme court shall select the index for the adjustment from the 
        indices listed in section 518.641.  The state court 
        administrator shall make the changes in the dollar amount 
        required by this paragraph available to courts and the public on 
        or before April 30 of the year in which the amount is to change. 
           (l) In establishing or modifying child support, if a child 
        receives a child's insurance benefit under United States Code, 
        title 42, section 402, because the obligor is entitled to old 
        age or disability insurance benefits, the amount of support 
        ordered shall be offset by the amount of the child's benefit.  
        The court shall make findings regarding the obligor's income 
        from all sources, the child support amount calculated under this 
        section, the amount of the child's benefit, and the obligor's 
        child support obligation.  Any benefit received by the child in 
        a given month in excess of the child support obligation shall 
        not be treated as an arrearage payment or a future payment. 
           Sec. 14.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.551, 
        subdivision 5e, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 5e.  [ADJUSTMENT TO SUPPORT ORDER.] A support order 
        issued under this section may provide that during any period of 
        time of 30 consecutive days or longer that the child is residing 
        with the noncustodial parent obligor, the amount of support 
        otherwise due under the order may be reduced. 
           Sec. 15.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.612, is 
        amended to read: 
           518.612 [INDEPENDENCE OF PROVISIONS OF DECREE OR TEMPORARY 
        ORDER.] 
           Failure by a party to make support payments is not a 
        defense to:  
           (1) interference with parenting time; or 
           (2) without the permission of the court or the noncustodial 
        other parent, removing a child from this state. 
           Nor is Interference with parenting time or taking a child 
        from this state without permission of the court or 
        the noncustodial other parent is not a defense to nonpayment of 
        support.  If a party fails to make support payments, or 
        interferes with parenting time, or removes a child from the 
        state without permission of the court or the noncustodial other 
        parent removes a child from this state, the other party may 
        petition the court for an appropriate order.  
           Sec. 16.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 518.64, 
        subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 2.  [MODIFICATION.] (a) The terms of an order 
        respecting maintenance or support may be modified upon a showing 
        of one or more of the following:  (1) substantially increased or 
        decreased earnings of a party; (2) substantially increased or 
        decreased need of a party or the child or children that are the 
        subject of these proceedings; (3) receipt of assistance under 
        the AFDC program formerly codified under sections 256.72 to 
        256.87 or 256B.01 to 256B.40, or chapter 256J or 256K; (4) a 
        change in the cost of living for either party as measured by the 
        federal bureau of statistics, any of which makes the terms 
        unreasonable and unfair; (5) extraordinary medical expenses of 
        the child not provided for under section 518.171; or (6) the 
        addition of work-related or education-related child care 
        expenses of the obligee or a substantial increase or decrease in 
        existing work-related or education-related child care expenses.  
           On a motion to modify support, the needs of any child the 
        obligor has after the entry of the support order that is the 
        subject of a modification motion shall be considered as provided 
        by section 518.551, subdivision 5f. 
           (b) It is presumed that there has been a substantial change 
        in circumstances under paragraph (a) and the terms of a current 
        support order shall be rebuttably presumed to be unreasonable 
        and unfair if: 
           (1) the application of the child support guidelines in 
        section 518.551, subdivision 5, to the current circumstances of 
        the parties results in a calculated court order that is at least 
        20 percent and at least $50 per month higher or lower than the 
        current support order; 
           (2) the medical support provisions of the order established 
        under section 518.171 are not enforceable by the public 
        authority or the custodial parent obligee; 
           (3) health coverage ordered under section 518.171 is not 
        available to the child for whom the order is established by the 
        parent ordered to provide; or 
           (4) the existing support obligation is in the form of a 
        statement of percentage and not a specific dollar amount.  
           (c) On a motion for modification of maintenance, including 
        a motion for the extension of the duration of a maintenance 
        award, the court shall apply, in addition to all other relevant 
        factors, the factors for an award of maintenance under section 
        518.552 that exist at the time of the motion.  On a motion for 
        modification of support, the court:  
           (1) shall apply section 518.551, subdivision 5, and shall 
        not consider the financial circumstances of each party's spouse, 
        if any; and 
           (2) shall not consider compensation received by a party for 
        employment in excess of a 40-hour work week, provided that the 
        party demonstrates, and the court finds, that: 
           (i) the excess employment began after entry of the existing 
        support order; 
           (ii) the excess employment is voluntary and not a condition 
        of employment; 
           (iii) the excess employment is in the nature of additional, 
        part-time employment, or overtime employment compensable by the 
        hour or fractions of an hour; 
           (iv) the party's compensation structure has not been 
        changed for the purpose of affecting a support or maintenance 
        obligation; 
           (v) in the case of an obligor, current child support 
        payments are at least equal to the guidelines amount based on 
        income not excluded under this clause; and 
           (vi) in the case of an obligor who is in arrears in child 
        support payments to the obligee, any net income from excess 
        employment must be used to pay the arrearages until the 
        arrearages are paid in full. 
           (d) A modification of support or maintenance, including 
        interest that accrued pursuant to section 548.091, may be made 
        retroactive only with respect to any period during which the 
        petitioning party has pending a motion for modification but only 
        from the date of service of notice of the motion on the 
        responding party and on the public authority if public 
        assistance is being furnished or the county attorney is the 
        attorney of record.  However, modification may be applied to an 
        earlier period if the court makes express findings that:  
           (1) the party seeking modification was precluded from 
        serving a motion by reason of a significant physical or mental 
        disability, a material misrepresentation of another party, or 
        fraud upon the court and that the party seeking modification, 
        when no longer precluded, promptly served a motion; 
           (2) the party seeking modification was a recipient of 
        federal Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Title II Older 
        Americans, Survivor's Disability Insurance (OASDI), other 
        disability benefits, or public assistance based upon need during 
        the period for which retroactive modification is sought; or 
           (3) the order for which the party seeks amendment was 
        entered by default, the party shows good cause for not 
        appearing, and the record contains no factual evidence, or 
        clearly erroneous evidence regarding the individual obligor's 
        ability to pay.  
           The court may provide that a reduction in the amount 
        allocated for child care expenses based on a substantial 
        decrease in the expenses is effective as of the date the 
        expenses decreased. 
           (e) Except for an award of the right of occupancy of the 
        homestead, provided in section 518.63, all divisions of real and 
        personal property provided by section 518.58 shall be final, and 
        may be revoked or modified only where the court finds the 
        existence of conditions that justify reopening a judgment under 
        the laws of this state, including motions under section 518.145, 
        subdivision 2.  The court may impose a lien or charge on the 
        divided property at any time while the property, or subsequently 
        acquired property, is owned by the parties or either of them, 
        for the payment of maintenance or support money, or may 
        sequester the property as is provided by section 518.24. 
           (f) The court need not hold an evidentiary hearing on a 
        motion for modification of maintenance or support. 
           (g) Section 518.14 shall govern the award of attorney fees 
        for motions brought under this subdivision. 
           Sec. 17.  [REVISOR INSTRUCTION.] 
           The revisor of statutes must renumber Minnesota Statutes, 
        section 518.175, subdivision 7, as section 518.1752. 
           Presented to the governor April 23, 2001 
           Signed by the governor April 26, 2001, 10:25 a.m.

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