language to be deleted (2) new language
relating to family law; making changes to custody and parenting time provisions;
amending Minnesota Statutes 2012, sections 518.17, subdivision 2; 518.175, subdivisions 1, 5.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:
In addition to the factors listed in subdivision 1, where either joint legal or joint physical custody is contemplated or sought, the court shall consider the following relevant factors:
(a) the ability of parents to cooperate in the rearing of their children;
(b) methods for resolving disputes regarding any major decision concerning the life of the child, and the parents' willingness to use those methods;
(c) whether it would be detrimental to the child if one parent were to have sole authority over the child's upbringing; and
(d) whether domestic abuse, as defined in section 518B.01, has occurred between the parents.
The court shall use a rebuttable presumption that upon request of either or both parties, joint legal custody is in the best interests of the child. However, the court shall use a rebuttable presumption that joint legal or physical custody is not in the best interests of the child if domestic abuse, as defined in section 518B.01, has occurred between the parents.
If the court awards joint legal or physical custody over the objection of a party, the court shall make detailed findings on each of the factors in this subdivision and explain how the factors led to its determination that joint custody would be in the best interests of the child.
(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 a parent as will enable the child and the 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 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 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.
(e) In the absence of other evidence, there is a rebuttable presumption that a parent is entitled to receive at least 25 percent of the parenting time for the child. For purposes of this paragraph, the percentage of parenting time may be determined by calculating the number of overnights that a child spends with a parent or by using a method other than overnights if the parent has significant time periods on separate days when the child is in the parent's physical custody but does not stay overnight. The court may consider the age of the child in determining whether a child is with a parent for a significant period of 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 parent has chronically and unreasonably failed to comply with court-ordered parenting time.
If a parent makes specific allegations that parenting time by the other parent places the 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 other parent or child from harm. 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.
Presented to the governor May 1, 2014
Signed by the governor May 5, 2014, 4:22 p.m.