Dec
16

Minnesota’s New Revenge Porn Law and Free Speech

On August 1, 2016, a new Minnesota law came into effect criminalizing acts involving what is commonly known as “revenge porn.”  The law is intended to protect people from the actions of jilted partners who post on the internet or otherwise distribute sexual images of their ex’s, often including names and contact information.  Minnesota Statute 617.261, entitled “Nonconsensual Dissemination of Private Sexual Images,” makes it a crime “to intentionally disseminate” a private sexual image of another, identifiable person.  Under this law, the person who disseminated the image...

Nov
25

Jurisdicción de la corte de familia sobre no residentes de Minnesota

Wilson Law Group representa regularmente a clientes que buscan un divorcio de un cónyuge viviendo fuera de Minnesota.  Nos encontramos con una situación común donde las partes se han separado por años, a menudo por las fronteras o los océanos, pero en realidad no se han divorciado.  Finalmente, el cónyuge reconoce que ha llegado el momento de disolver el matrimonio, por diversas razones personales.  El paso del tiempo no haga simplemente las partes se divorciaron (un desafortunado mito que persiste), y cualquier matrimonios posteriores son inválidos si no se disuelve el...

Nov
25

When a BB Gun Is Not a Gun

In a case published on October 19, 2016, the Minnesota Supreme Court decided an issue long debated in Minnesota Courts: Is a BB gun a firearm under Minnesota Criminal Law. The issue was presented when the State charged Mr. Haywood with violating Minn. Stat. § 609.165, subd.1b, which criminalizes the possession of a firearm by an ineligible person. The Court’s analysis is also relevant to any case in which an individual is charged with possession or use of a firearm when the term “firearm” is not specifically defined by statute.

In the case, State v. Haywood, No. A14-1792, 2016 WL...

Oct
12

Recognition of Parentage: Simple Form with Serious Outcomes

When a child is born in Minnesota to an unmarried mother, the mother automatically has sole legal and sole physical custody of that child under Minn. Stat. § 257.541.  When this happens, many parents sign a Recognition of Parentage, or ROP, form so that the baby’s birth certificate will have both parents listed. This is a form that is frequently signed at the hospital and is then submitted to the Minnesota Office of Vital Statistics. The ROP can be signed at any time, however, no matter how old the child is. Signing the ROP is easy to do, but doing so can cause significant...

Oct
3

New Developments in DWI Law

Birchfield v. North Dakota

For years, lawyers in Minnesota have argued about the validity of the Minnesota Implied Consent Law and the corresponding criminalization of refusal to take a blood, breath, or urine test.  In Minnesota, as in many other states, in order to enforce laws against drunk driving, statute establishes that by applying for a driver’s license, you have impliedly consented to a test if there is probable cause to believe that you have been drinking prior to operating the vehicle.[1]  If you are asked to take a test and you refuse to comply, the refusal results in a more...

Sep
28

Calculating Wages Not Paid: Tyson Foods v. Bouaphakeo

In a decision earlier this year, the Supreme Court issued a ruling that employees proceeding together as a putative class, or as a collective for claims under the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), can demonstrate commonality through statistical evidence that is not particular to the plaintiffs and events at issue. The decision in the case, Tyson Foods, Inc. v. Bouaphakeo et al., 765 F.3d 791 (2016)[1] dealt with Tyson employees who stated that their employer failed to compensate them for time putting on and taking off protective gear required for that work. They claimed that...

Sep
28

Expanded Provisional Waiver Program: the Good, Bad, and the Uncertain

The final rule expanding the I-601A provisional waiver process went into effect on August 29, 2016.

The most significant and most publicized change in the rule allows applicants with U.S citizen or lawful permanent resident (LPR) spouses and parents to qualify for provisional waiver processing. Accordingly, USCIS estimates that an additional 44,061 newly eligible provisional waiver applicants and their family members will benefit from this expansion of this rule within the next ten years. While this is a positive development in provisional waiver processing, other provisions in the final...

Sep
28

When is a Search not a Search? Police Use of GPS in Minnesota

When is a Search not a Search? One way in which the United States protects its people from being subjected to random whims of the State and errant police is by protecting our right to be free from “unreasonable searches and seizures.”  This right is established in the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which states, “[t]he right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and...

May
18

Tax Benefit

There are multiple tax benefits associated with parenting including the minor child tax dependency exemption (dependency exemption), the child tax credit, head of household status, child and dependent care tax credit, the earned income tax credit, and benefits associated with Health Savings Accounts.

When the parents of a child are together and filing taxes jointly, the parties do not have to think about who is entitled to the tax benefits of claiming the minor child or children. However, when couples divorce, who claims the child or children for tax proposes can become a source of...

Apr
9

Initiating Minnesota Wage Claims

The vast majority of employers pay employees on time and using proper calculations. Of course, problems can and do arise in this area. When an employer fails to pay, or calculates pay incorrectly, the consequences can be rather severe if the employer does not take quick action to correct the problem. This post will briefly outline a few of the most common ways an employee may initiate wage claims against an employer in Minnesota.

Informal Notice and Demand for Wages

For a terminated or laid-off employee, wages earned at the time of discharge are immediately due to an employee upon demand....

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