J. Scott Braden
Scott represents clients throughout southern Minnesota in a wide range of family law, probate, guardianship, and conservatorship matters. Specifically, Scott’s family law practice involves advocating for clients in dissolution of marriage, adoptions, antenuptial agreements, and post-decree divorce matters. Scott’s probate practice includes representing clients in probate proceedings inducing will contests, establishing special needs trusts and supplemental needs trusts, preparing last will and testaments, guardianship and conservatorship proceedings, and preparing powers of attorney and healthcare directives.
Scott enjoys assisting clients in solving complex and difficult family court issues. Scott’s clients range from farmers to business owners, professionals, trades people, and factory workers. He has represented both husbands and wives in standard and complex divorces throughout southern Minnesota. Scott has worked with clients whose assets range from zero to high net worth divorces over $5,000,000.00. He has succeeded in protecting client’s non-marital assets including farms, closely held corporations, real estate, and retirement investments.
In addition to his extensive litigation experience, Scott has substantial experience working with clients to resolve cases using mediators, parenting time expeditors, parenting time evaluators, and custody evaluators. Scott himself is a qualified neutral under Rule 114 of the General Rules of Practice for District Court and frequently mediates family law cases for other attorneys.
Involvement in the Faribault community and the local bar is a cornerstone of Scott’s practice. Scott has been involved in numerous professional organizations including the Minnesota State Bar Association, Fifth District Bar Association, and Rice County Bar Association. Scott has also been a past president, board member, and volunteer attorney, for Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services (legal aid). For more than a decade, Scott was a member and past chair of the Faribault City Planning Commission and has been involved in Divine Merch Catholic Church in Faribault, serving as finance committee and pastoral counsel.
Ethical representation has always been at the center of Scott’s practice. Scott is well-versed in the Rules of Professional Responsibility, having served on the Minnesota Supreme Court Alternative Dispute Resolution Ethics Board, and having chaired the Fifth District Bar Association Ethics Committee for six (6) years, reviewing ethics complaints involving area attorneys.
Scott has received numerous honors throughout his career, including designation as a family law “Super Lawyer” from 2001-2017. Scott has also been named a “Top 40 Family Law Super Lawyer” by Minnesota Law and Politics.
State of Minnesota, 1981
U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, 1981
8th Circuit, U.S. Court of Appeals, 1985
Juris Doctor, 1981, Hamline University School of Law
Bachelor of Arts and Government, 1978 St. John’s University
Minnesota State Bar Association
5th District Bar Association, Past President
Rice County Bar Association, Past President
Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services, Volunteer Attorney, Past President and Board of Director Member
Supreme Court ADR Ethics Board, Past Vice Chair
Divine Mercy Catholic Church, Faribault. Finance Committee
City of Faribault Planning Commission (Past Chair)
5th District Bar Association Ethics Committee, Past Chair
Scott has been named a Super Lawyer by Minnesota Family Law and Politics in family law from 2001 to 2017
Scott has been named a Top 40 Family Law Super Lawyer by Minnesota Family Law and Politics
He received the Minnesota Legal Services Coalition 2001 Pro Bono Public Award. He received the Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services President’s Pro Bono Service Award 2016.
Mid Minnesota Legal Assistance, 1981-1986. Staff – Managing Attorney
Cook, Voegele & Nelson, P.A. 1986-1990. Associate Attorney
Assistant Public Defender 3rd Judicial District 1990-1996 (juvenile protection, termination of parental rights)
Family Law and Divorce Practice
Scott provides legal services in family law, including:
Dissolution of Marriage
Post-Decree Divorce Matters
Scott is actively engaged in probate matters including:
Formal and Informal Probate including will contests
Special Needs Trusts
Supplemental Needs Trusts
Last Wills and Testaments
Guardianships and Conservatorships
Power of Attorney / Health Care Directive
High Asset Divorce: Represented wife in dissolution involving numerous farms. Secured substantial cash and real estate settlement with lease back options to former spouse.
High Asset Divorce: Long term marriage. Case involved significant valuation of real estate and personal property issues. Secured cash award to spouse payable within 24 months.
Maintenance: Long term marriage. Case involved substantial non-marital assets. Included valuation of dental professional practice. Lump sum buyout of wife’s spousal maintenance claim.
Veterinary Practice: Represented veterinarian. Case involved valuation of clinic. Defended permanent spousal maintenance claims.
Closely Held Business: Represented owner of closely held construction company with valuation exceeding $5 million dollars. Case involved business valuation, tax planning, and spousal maintenance claims.
Antenuptial Agreement: Represented farmer with net worth exceeding $7 million dollars in negotiation and preparation of premarital agreement which limited spousal maintenance and provided transfer of assets on death to his heirs.
Guardianship: Successfully tried guardianship proceedings establishing incapacity for 21-year-old diagnosed with Schizophrenia.
Conservatorship: Successfully tried conservator’s petition to make Last Will and Testament for protected party who died during the pendency of the litigation.
Estate: Successfully defeated claims of undue influence and coercion in drafting Last Will and Testament. Nominated Personal Representative confirmed, and estate distributed pursuant to terms of Last Will and Testament.
Trust: Successfully managed and distributed Trust assets in excess of $10 million dollars. Continue to manage sub trust with assets exceeding $750,000.