In all proceedings under sections 257.51 to 257.74, any party may be represented by counsel. The county attorney shall represent the public authority. The court shall appoint counsel for a party who is unable to pay timely for counsel in proceedings under sections 257.51 to 257.74.
(a) The court may order expert witness and guardian ad litem fees and other costs of the trial and pretrial proceedings, including appropriate tests, to be paid by the parties in proportions and at times determined by the court. The court shall require a party to pay part of the fees of court-appointed counsel according to the party's ability to pay, but if counsel has been appointed the appropriate agency shall pay the party's proportion of all other fees and costs. The agency responsible for child support enforcement shall pay the fees and costs for blood or genetic tests in a proceeding in which it is a party, is the real party in interest, or is acting on behalf of the child. However, at the close of a proceeding in which paternity has been established under sections 257.51 to 257.74, the court shall order the adjudicated father to reimburse the public agency, if the court finds he has sufficient resources to pay the costs of the blood or genetic tests. When a party bringing an action is represented by the county attorney, no filing fee shall be paid to the court administrator.
(b) In each fiscal year, the commissioner of finance shall deposit guardian ad litem reimbursements in the general fund and credit them to a separate account with the trial courts. The balance of this account is appropriated to the trial courts and does not cancel but is available until expended. Expenditures by the state court administrator's office from this account must be based on the amount of the guardian ad litem reimbursements received by the state from the courts in each judicial district.
If a party is financially unable to pay the cost of a transcript, the court shall furnish on request a transcript for purposes of appeal.
Official Publication of the State of Minnesota
Revisor of Statutes