• April 8, 2015

HourglassUpdate (April 8, 2015): Phew (for the plaintiffs and their lawyers in the case described below). The Minnesota Supreme Court affirmed the Court of Appeals’ decision which had reversed a devastating dismissal at the trial court for a supposed failure to meet service of process requirements timely (Minn. Stat. 45.028).

Update (June 27, 2014): Gulp. The Minnesota Supreme Court has granted a petition for review of the decision described below, for which Minnesota Litigator had congratulated plaintiff’s counsel for obtaining a reversal of the trial court’s dismissal of their case at the Court of Appeals…

The vicissitudes of civil litigation are probably ridiculously petty when set against those in criminal litigation where life and limb are on the line. But, to at least one litigator (me), civil litigation can seem like an extraordinarily intense roller-coaster ride that plays out over weeks, months, and sometimes years of wins, ties, losses, reversals ad infinitem.

Original Post (April 24, 2014): If a particular process subject to a deadline is not deemed completed UNLESS a particular step is taken, it can have ramifications if the operative word is UNLESS rather than UNTIL.

Let’s say, for example, a party had to give formal legal notice to an adversary by June 17, 2012, and it met that deadline but then, only after June 17, 2012 did the party sign his “affidavit of compliance.”

The affidavit of compliance is a prerequisite (“unless”), but is it part of the deadline analysis (“until”)?

No. This is the kind of nauseating detail that gives ulcers to all but the most amazingly detail-oriented lawyers. Plaintiffs’ counsel in Meeker v. IDS Prop. Cas. Ins. Co. may have had a sleepless night or two having lost at the trial court on this timing technicality but, undoubtedly to their great relief, they prevailed on appeal, winning reversal of the trial court’s decision throwing out their lawsuit as time-barred.

Congratulations to the plaintiffs’ firm of Roeder Smith Jadin, PLLC.


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