New Law: In the spring of 2015, the Minnesota legislature made changes to family laws. It made these changes to address problems that practitioners recognized in the practice of family law.

Two Minnesota cases highlighted an issue regarding interest rates on judgments: Redleaf v. Redleaf, 807 N.W.2d 731 (Minn. App. 2011) and Soeffker v. Soeffker, No. A12-0211 (Minn. App. Nov. 19, 2012). These cases held that a 2009 amendment to the interest judgment statute, Minnesota Statute §549.09, required courts to set interest at 10% for property settlement money judgments (Redleaf) or property division equalizers (Soeffker) in excess of $50,000.

The new law addresses this problem by exempting family court property settlement judgments in excess of $50,000 from the 10% interest rate. It also provides that courts are authorized to award interest at the standard judgment rate. Further, it provides that the court can award a lower interest rate or no interest rate at all if a finding of unfair hardship is made.

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