A court of law is the only way in which one can obtain a divorce decree, dissolution, legal separation, nullity or other form of terminating a marriage in Minnesota. Other than the termination of the marital estate, the court also has jurisdiction to resolve other issues that are intertwined in the existing marriage which include, but are not limited to: custody and visitation rights, division of property of the marital estate, spousal maintenance (alimony), child support, restraining orders, etc.
No court appearances are required to approve the dissolution if you are using the summary dissolution procedure (no children, property limit, no maintenance) or are proceeding by administrative review. Both of these procedures require written settlement agreements signed by both parties. If you have children, the agreement will also need to be signed by an attorney for each party.