Monthly Archive
for: ‘September, 2013’

The Canary Sings Again: New Life for the Minnesota Whistleblower Act

The scope of Minnesota’s Whistleblower Act was restricted for many years by courts that narrowly interpreted “good faith” and declined to recognize reports of common law violations as protected activity. Recent legislation has expanded the scope of the act and clarified its purposes. The Minnesota Whistleblower Act (hereinafter “MWA”), Minn. Stat. §§181.931–.932, formerly weakened by decades of case law, […]

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Patenting Biologicals: Myriad Issues and Options in the Wake of Myriad

Science, like law, is in pursuit of an esthetic of symmetry wherein the apparent messiness of natural phenomena and human behavior can be reified into results that closely approximate if not capture the forms of truth and justice. When the two esthetics intersect, as in debates about patent eligibility of biologicals, the challenges are rich for lawyers, scientists, […]

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Subject Matter Jurisdiction Peek-a-Boo: The Confusing State of Rule 68

The Supreme Court’s recent decision in Genesis Healthcare Corp. v. Symczyk and Justice Kagan’s spirited dissent have placed in high relief the limitations of Rule 68 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Whether a solution will emerge or litigators will continue to litigate about how not to litigate remains to be seen. “The plain […]

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Labor Arbitration

Modifications in the Uniform Arbitration Act, in force for nearly 60 years in Minnesota, can affect the outcome of litigation related to that form of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). The significance of the impact was reflected earlier this year in Education Minnesota Inver Grove Heights Local 1718 v. Ind. Sch. Dist. # 199 (Inver Grove […]

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Government Lawyer Conflicts

Conflicts of interest can arise for lawyers in all areas of practice.  The subject is of such importance that there are essentially eight rules in the Minnesota Rules of Professional Conduct (MRPC) that deal principally with conflict issues.1 Most of these rules can be applied over a wide range of legal areas and types of […]

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Deprivation of Lawful Jail Credit

Courts must be careful when sentencing defendants to prison lest they inadvertently deprive a defendant of lawful jail credit by failing to state the number of jail credit days or by stating the number of jail credit days but directing the prison to “verify” jail credit.  When the Department of Corrections is asked to determine […]

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Commitment & Diversity

I am proud to be a member of the MSBA, because not only is it committed to fostering diversity within the legal community, it’s willing to look at its own efforts and acknowledge when they are not enough. Last year, a work group of committed MSBA members undertook—at the Council’s request—an unflinching examination of the organization’s […]

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