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Bench & Bar of Minnesota is the official publication of the Minnesota State Bar Association.

Domestic Abuse Dissolutions

In dissolutions involving domestic abuse, the difference between a 518B.01 order for protection (OFP) and orders restraining abuse issued within the dissolution proceeding itself can be very important. A Sec. 518.131 order is not a final order. It cannot immediately be appealed and it does not preclude the parties from litigating the same issues later. A 518B.01 order, however, is final. If you fail to file a timely motion to amend findings in the OFP proceeding and/or fail to timely appeal, then you will be collaterally estopped from challenging those findings in the dissolution proceeding. In addition, both 518B.01 and 518.131 provide that an OFP cannot be vacated or modified in a dissolution proceeding. If you want an order in the dissolution proceeding to “override” the OFP, you should also file a motion to vacate or modify the OFP, which can be consolidated with the hearing in the dissolution proceeding.

Tom James

Law Office of Thomas B. James

Cokato

tom@tomjameslaw.com

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