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Jun 27 2022

What Is an Evidentiary Hearing in Family Court? 

If you are facing a divorce or another family law concern, you will need to resolve each of the terms or issues that apply in your case between yourselves (with the dedicated guidance of your respective Minnesota family law attorneys) or will need the court’s intervention. One form of intervention is the evidentiary hearing, and a better understanding of the process can help. 

How an Evidentiary Hearing Differs from Trial

If you have divorce terms that remain unresolved after you and your divorcing spouse have exhausted your negotiation options, you’ll likely need the court to make the remaining determinations on your behalf. These divorce terms include:

An evidentiary hearing refers to a hearing in which the judge rules on one aspect of your divorce (or another family law matter), such as your parenting time schedule. At your evidentiary hearing, the judge will hear all the relevant information from both sides and will rule on the matter in question. This differs from going to trial, which is a final hearing in which every remaining term of your divorce is resolved, and your case is finalized. 

If you have a lone family law issue, such as if you need a post-decree child custody modification that you are unable to hammer out between yourselves, you’ll likely have an evidentiary hearing to resolve the matter. At both an evidentiary hearing and at trial, both parties to the divorce are allowed to present evidence and witnesses to support their position on the matter. Evidentiary meetings are formal legal matters that involve the exacting rules of the court – making having a dedicated family law attorney on your side well advised.

Matters that Are Commonly Resolved through Evidentiary Hearings

In addition to the basic terms of divorce, all the following can lead to evidentiary hearings:

  • Motions for modifications of divorce terms
  • Emergency orders for protection (in situations involving domestic violence)
  • Residence exclusion hearings (that allow one spouse to exclusively remain in the home while the divorce is pending) 
  • Post-judgment enforcement 
  • Motions that attorney fees be paid by the other party

If You Have an Evidentiary Hearing Pending

If you are facing a scheduled evidentiary hearing, consulting with a seasoned family law attorney sooner rather than later is well advised. Your attorney will help to ensure that you are well prepared to present your strongest case in support of your position on the matter at hand. An attorney can help in all the following ways:

  • Gathering all the relevant evidence
  • Helping those providing eyewitness testimony prepare for the hearing
  • Helping you better understand the process and helping you prepare for what is to come
  • Skillfully presenting your position to the court and knowledgeably arguing for your legal matter’s best possible resolution 

Turn to an Experienced Minnesota Family Law Attorney for the Legal Guidance You Need

The accomplished Minnesota family law attorneys at Atticus Family Law have the experience, legal insight, and drive to help. We’re on your side, so please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information today.   

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