Minnesota Litigator

News & Commentary

Do not consider the blog to be a substitute for obtaining legal advice from a qualified attorney licensed in your state.

Good news! Court records now available online!

A post by Karen Cole At last!   Minnesota courts are making many district court records available online.  You can now search by case number for many district court documents filed after July 1, 2015.   Public court documents will now be accessible online for most types of civil and criminal case cases.  Only court-generated documents will […]

Caveat Creditor: Entering a Judgment vs. Docketing a Judgment and Why it Matters….

As all civil litigators know and any experienced litigants, well over 90% of lawsuits settle before trial. That is, many end in compromise settlements, i.e., voluntary transfers of money, most often, precluding the need for any further court or legal action. Nevertheless, as thousands of cases resolve by negotiated settlements, many more thousands of lawsuits […]

Ace in the Hole: Target Data Breach Insurance Coverage Case

Update (February 8, 2021): The post, immediately below, was a complete “prediction failure.” U.S. District Court Judge Wilhemina M. Wright (D. Minn.) rejected Target’s motion for partial summary judgment in this insurance coverage dispute over Target’s losses from a huge data breach and granted the insurer’s motion. We’ll see if Target appeals the decision and […]

Schiltz-Regulation of the Minnesota Civil Litigator Bar

Minnesota lawyers, are supposedly self-regulating. Do you get the joke? What in the world is “self-regulation”? (See The Myth of Self-Regulation, Fred C. Zacharias (Minnesota Law Review)). Who thought up this notion of self-regulation, we wonder? (Hint: Lawyers). Seriously, the concept of self-regulation is complicated and nuanced. As such, it is inappropriate to address in […]

This Tiny Detail is a Big Deal.

Current mortgage interest rates in the United States are around 3%. The one-year LIBOR (London Interbank Offer Rate) is 0.33%. So if you can get a 10% interest rate as a lender, that’s pretty good. Most people (even lawyers) do not normally think of plaintiffs in lawsuits as “lenders” or “creditors” but, in a way, […]

If You’re Going to Sue a Lawyer, Hire A Lawyer With Experience Suing Lawyers.

You might not like the procedural requirements for legal malpractice cases under Minnesota law, but you still have to heed them (or lose your case). So held the Minnesota Court of Appeals (AGAIN) this week in Mittelstaedt v. Henney (see pp. 13-14). And you cannot maneuver around the statute by calling your claim a “breach […]

An Important Minnesota Appellate Decision on the Attorney-Client Privilege?

The Minnesota Court of Appeals granted a writ of prohibition in Stephen A. Lawrence, et al. v Rihm Family Companies, et al., halting the trial court’s order that a party had waived its attorney-client privilege. In a nutshell Party A sold a business (X Co) to Party B, delivered the electronic files of X Co. […]

Pet Debt: Keeping Your Dog on a Short Lease?

Update (December 8, 2020): Apparently, the defendant in the “pet lease class action,” which was the subject of an earlier post, is not a particularly deep-pocketed defendant, at least based on the modesty of the recently approved class action settlement. The class action plaintiffs were awarded a maximum of $50,200 (to be distributed pro rata […]

The Next Big Wave: Dead & Dying Boomers? (Trust/Estate Litigation)

Long-time Minnesota Litigator readers will remember our irregular posts predicting “the next big wave” in civil litigation. Some seem widely recognized, even obvious (e.g., litigation spawned by the “Me Too” movement in which women (generally) sue men (generally) for alleged sexually inappropriate misconduct). Some seem less obvious (counties and others suing pharmaceuticals for widespread opiate […]

Attorney Discipline Better Late than Never

Update (November 6, 2020): It took the Board of Professional Responsibility more than three years to get to this point but, by clear and convincing evidence, earlier this week they finally issued “Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, Recommendations for Discipline,” finding several ethics violations by Minneapolis lawyer, Dan Biersdorf. Mr. Biersdorf is the subject […]