Maintenance Law Change

Amid all the reporting of transportation and soccer stadium issues in the latest Minnesota legislative session, little reporting was made concerning an important modification to the Minnesota spousal maintenance law. Minnesota Statute Section 518.552, the spousal maintenance statute, was amended effective August 1, 2016 to include a new section that allows maintenance to be modified based on the cohabitation of the maintenance obligee with another adult.

In determining whether to allow a modification, the family court is to consider (1) whether the obligee would remarry but for the maintenance award, (2) the economic benefit the obligee derives from the cohabitation, (3) the length of the cohabitation and its likely future duration, and (4) the economic impact on the obligee if maintenance is modified and the cohabitation ends.