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Judicial Branch Releases Joint Physical Custody Presumption Study Group Report

Posted: Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Judicial Branch has released the Joint Physical Child Custody Presumption Study Group Report, which considers the impacts of a presumption of joint physical custody in Minnesota.  State Court Administrator, Sue Dosal, was charged by the 2008 Legislature with convening the study group.

Led by Carver County Judge Kevin W. Eide, the group met throughout the fall, reviewed many scholarly articles and the experience of other states, conducted a well-attended public hearing on the issue, and received hundreds of written comments.  "While the group ultimately did not feel they had enough data, nor consensus, to recommend a change to the custody statutes at this time, they did cover considerable ground and have put together a foundational piece of work for the Legislature to consider," said Judge Eide.

"The group worked diligently to comply with the ambitious scope of their charge under a very short timeline," said State Court Administrator Sue Dosal.

Among their primary findings, the Study Group found that:

  • Idaho is the only state that appears to have a clear presumption of joint physical custody
  • Nine states have adopted presumptions of joint physical custody that apply only when both parents have agreed
  • The District of Columbia and eight states, including Minnesota, have presumptions in favor of joint legal custody
  • Minnesota is the only state that specifies a presumptive minimum percentage of parenting time that the non-custodial parent must receive (25 percent)

Read the Report (12.94 MB)