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What Is A Minute Order?


Many families who are involved in divorce and other family law proceedings encounter the term “minute order” and are confused as to its significance. Minute orders are essentially recordings of the content of a hearing and can play an important role in enforcement actions and appeals later on down the road. Read on to learn more about minute orders and how they could affect your own family law case.

What are “Minutes”? 

All court hearings are recorded word-for-word by a court clerk, who creates a written record of everything that is said and done by the parties, their attorneys, and the judge. It is possible for the parties involved to obtain transcripts of proceedings by contacting the court reporter who was present.

Interim Court Orders 

Court orders are binding directives issued by a judge. In family law cases, these orders could order one party to pay alimony to the other after a divorce is finalized, can protect a victim of domestic violence, can require a parent to pay child support, or could dictate how two parents share custody. When most people think of court orders, they imagine a final verdict resolving a case. In practice, however, judges can issue binding orders throughout a case. This happens a lot in family law matters because some decisions, like where a child will live while his or her parents’ divorce is pending, can’t wait for a final verdict that could end up taking months to reach. In these cases, courts will issue an interim order that will remain in place until a final order is issued.

Minute Orders 

Minute orders are a specific type of interim order that are issued in family law cases. Basically, these orders contain a summary of a judge’s decision during a particular hearing. While not as detailed as formal court orders, minute orders can be used as temporary records until a formal written order is signed by the judge. In most cases, they contain at least the following information:

  • The names of the parties to the lawsuit;
  • The name of the court issuing the order;
  • The case number;
  • The court clerk’s name;
  • The date of issue; and
  • The substantive content of the judge’s decision.

Families who wish for a temporary record of a child custody arrangement, child support or alimony award, or restraining order can seek a copy of their minute order. These orders can also come in handy for those who have questions about scheduling details for their next hearing or the deadline for evidence exchange.

Obtaining a Copy of a Minute Order 

To obtain a copy of a minute order, a party to the proceedings in question can ask for a paper version from the court clerk within a day or two of the hearing. It is also, however, possible to obtain an electronic copy and doing so can often be accomplished more quickly.

Call Today to Speak with an Experienced Florida Divorce Lawyer 

If you and your spouse have decided to divorce, please call compassionate and skilled Fort Lauderdale divorce lawyer Sandra Bonfiglio, P.A. right away. We can help walk you through your next steps and ensure that your case is resolved as quickly and as smoothly as possible.




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