Waiver is a defense to a breach-of-contract claim in Minnesota. A party may "waive" a contractual right through words or actions showing that the party is knowingly giving up a right.
This article looks at contracts of adhesion in Minnesota and the related defense of unconscionability. An “adhesive” or “unconscionable” contract is one that is grossly unfair and takes advantage of a weaker party. A party can use these arguments to defend against a breach-of-contract claim and invalidate the contract.
This article looks at anticipatory breach of contract (a/k/a "anticipatory repudiation) in Minnesota. Anticipatory breach arises when it becomes clear that the other party cannot or will not perform the contract. If the other party fails to give an "adequate assurance", the party can declare the contract breached and sue for damages.
This article looks at reformation claims in Minnesota. "Reformation" allows a court to correct a contract mistake. If a party proves the mistake, the judge can “reform” the contract so that it conforms to the parties' original intent.
This article looks at the "duty to mitigate damages" in Minnesota. Generally, a party to a civil case must “mitigate” damages by taking reasonable steps to limit his or her losses. If not, a judge could drastically reduce the amount of damages awarded to that party.
This article looks at conversion and civil theft claims in Minnesota. These claims can give a victim a money judgment on which to collect against the defendant. While the defendant might be prosecuted for criminal theft, a conviction or restitution order can aid the plaintiff in a civil case.
Minnesota law has a creditor remedy called “pre-judgment attachment”, which allows a plaintiff to “attach” a civil claim for money to a non-exempt asset of the defendant while pursuing a judgment. Attachment can be an important option for a nervous creditor, but it only applies in limited circumstances.
This article looks at the Minnesota Parol Evidence Rule (a/k/a the "Four Corners" Rule). The Rule generally requires a judge to focus on the written contract, and to bar evidence of pre-contract statements that would alter or change the written contract.
Oral contracts are generally valid and enforceable. However, the Minnesota Statute of Frauds requires certain types of contracts to be in writing, otherwise they cannot be enforced. While there are exceptions to the Statute of Frauds, the exceptions are limited. The best practice is to put all significant contracts in writing, along with any changes to the contract.
This article looks at “fraudulent” (now called “voidable”) transfers in Minnesota. The Minnesota Voidable Transfer Act (MVTA) is a risk to borrowers. However, it can be a remedy for creditors to collect from an uncooperative borrower.
When someone has your personal property and refuses to give it back, what options do you have in Minnesota? For property valued at over $15,000, a “replevin claim” is often the best legal recourse. This article explains what “replevin” is, and why this type of lawsuit can be useful for recovering personal property.
In Minnesota, a civil judgment that is docketed becomes a lien against “non-exempt” real estate owned by the debtor in that county. Foreclosing a judgment lien can be an excellent way to collect a large judgment. However, judgment liens don’t apply to all real estate and can be tricky to foreclose. The bottom line: the better you understand judgment liens, the better chance you have of protecting your interests in the judgment or your land.
When a Notice of Lis Pendens is recorded against land in Minnesota, it means that there is pending litigation involving that land. A claimant must be careful to file a Notice of Lis Pendens properly. The landowner or prospective buyer must understand the issue and protect itself before closing on real estate.
This article discusses 100 mistakes that attorneys and clients should avoid in Minnesota courts.
A key question for many clients is whether or not to commence civil litigation. This article looks at the Impossible Whopper lawsuit and the rationale for deciding when to start a civil lawsuit.
This article looks at the Minnesota Makeup Lawsuit and the broader issue of civil litigation against the government.
This article looks at the “Cancel Culture”, the Backcountry.com boycott, and suggestions for avoiding PR disasters in the context of business litigation.
Minnesota deer hunters should be proactive in dealing with legal issues that may impact their hunt. This article will look at some common legal issues that hunters experience, including hunter harassment, trespassing, property line disputes, and hunting access issues.
Most people do not fully understand what a settlement is and how it affects them. This post will look at the infamous StarKist tuna settlement and help you understand how to settle the right way.
The President may have legal bases to avoid some of the congressional subpoenas, and may face few legal consequences for ignoring the subpoenas. However, if you are served with a subpoena, you should respond. You may have rights to quash or modify the subpoena. If you do not respond, you could be fined or jailed. It may be useful to contact an attorney if you receive a subpoena to produce information, since you may have a duty to protect customer information.
Recently, a judge in North Carolina awarded a $750,000 judgment to a man that sued the “homewrecker” of his marriage. The case is rare, as Minnesota and most other states have no such law. But, the case highlights a broader issue: be careful not to interfere with an existing contract or business relationship. Otherwise, you could get sued for tortious interference with contract or tortious interference with prospective business advantage.
The US recently sued Edward Snowden for royalties from his speeches and a new book. The lawsuit highlights a broader issue of how companies protect trade secrets. This post discusses the Snowden case, the broader trade secret issues, and offers some practical suggestions.
Can a Corporate Receiver in Minnesota Assert a Veil-Piercing Claim? “No”, According to the Minnesota Supreme Court.
A corporate receiver in Minnesota lacks the power to pursue a pierce-the-corporate-veil claim, according to the Minnesota Supreme Court's recent decision in Aaron Carlson Corp. v. Cohen, No. A18-0100 (Minn. Sept. 11, 2019). A creditor may have a limited ability to pursue civil litigation on a veil-piercing claim in a post-receivership case.
Going to war over a business dispute may be costly to your long-term interests. If your opponent is disagreeable or the subject of the case is highly valuable, then you may have no choice but to gear up for a lengthy fight. Before you gear up for battle, closely consider your long-term goals and discuss them with your litigation attorney.