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  • Employee Overtime for Cell Phone Use – Employers May Incur Unintended Wage Obligations

    06/29/2012 / Christopher J. Harristhal

    Employers can unwittingly accrue liability for unpaid wages including overtime as a result of employees performing work on cell phones, particularly smart phones or PDAs, after hours or even during lunch breaks. The employee who is using a smart phone to send emails to colleagues or customers is probably working under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), meaning that the time devoted to those tasks is compensable time, which is time for which the employer has to pay. In the event that those minutes and hours push the employee over 40 hours per week, they will also trigger overtime liability. Although not an issue with exempt, salaried personnel under the FLSA, this can be a significant risk for hourly workers.

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  • Minnesota Employers Cannot Agree To Refrain From Contesting A Claim For Unemployment Benefits

    06/29/2012 / Daniel J. Ballintine

    The law in Minnesota has long-provided that employers cannot ask employees to waive their rights to unemployment benefits and that any agreement to that effect is void. The Minnesota Legislature has amended Section 268.192 of the Minnesota Statutes that will affect how employers clarify their agreements with employees to provide that they will not contest a claim for unemployment benefits and employees corresponding responses given to DEED.

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  • Auto Insurance: Are You Covered? – Minnesota Motorcycle Insurance

    06/18/2012 / Kate Westad

    It’s that time of year again. Warm summer weather brings thousands of motorcycles onto the road ‎each year. In fact, the Minnesota Department of Safety (MDS) reports that “by the end of the ‎calendar year 2011, the number of licensed motorcycle operators and the number of registered ‎motorcycles in Minnesota had reached their highest levels in history.”‎

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  • Employee Need Not Invoke MPLA Leaves

    06/04/2012 / Dayle Nolan

    Dayle Nolan was a source for an article for the June issue of Minnesota Lawyer. The article focused on a request for leave from work under the Minnesota Parenting Leave Act and the stipulations of the act’s protections.

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  • Arrest and Conviction Records – The EEOC Rolls Out New Enforcement Guidelines

    05/30/2012 / Chris Harristhal

    On April 25, 2012, the EEOC issued a new “Enforcement Guidance” on the use of arrest and conviction records in employment decisions. Although the Enforcement Guidance largely consolidated a variety of prior EEOC analyses on the subject, it also went further and adopted an even more zealous cautionary instruction regarding the use of criminal records.

    Since the federal government has no legislation that expressly prohibits the use of criminal background information, the EEOC has taken it upon itself to discourage employers from using such information and cautioning that the use of an individual’s criminal history in making employment decisions “may, in some instances, violate the prohibition against employment discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.”

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  • NFL Players’ Concussion Injury Litigation-Emerging Trends in Multidistrict Litigation

    05/30/2012 / Melissa L Hagstrum

    In July 2011, seventy-five former NFL players and fifty-one spouses filed a lawsuit against the NFL, NFL Properties, and Riddell and Easton-Bell related companies that design, manufacture, distribute, and sell football equipment, including helmets. This first lawsuit was filed in California state court. Over the next ten months, eighty similar lawsuits were filed across the country by other former NFL players and their spouses. To date, the lawsuits involve more than 2,200 former NFL players and many of their spouses.
    Product designers and manufacturers are watching the former NFL players’ concussion injury litigation closely for emerging trends in multidistrict litigation. Product liability litigation is one of the two most prevalent types of litigation where separate lawsuits pending in different federal district courts may be consolidated

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  • The Federal Circuit Directs the Eastern District of Texas to Reconsider Motions to Sever

    05/30/2012 / Glenna L Gilbert

    On petition for a writ of mandamus, the Federal Circuit recently directed the Eastern District of Texas to reconsider motions to sever in light of the test for joinder set forth by the Federal Circuit in In re EMC Corp., Misc. No. 100 (Fed. Cir. May 4, 2012).
     
    Petitioners in In re EMC Corp. were eight of eighteen companies named as defendants in a single complaint filed by Oasis Research LLC. Oasis asserted method claims from four patents, all of which dealt with off-site computer data storage. The defendants were all alleged to have offered services that provide online backup and storage for home or business computer users. Defendants moved to sever and transfer the claims against them, arguing that because there was no concert of action, the claims against them did not arise out of the same transaction or occurrence, as required by Rule 20 of the Fe

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  • Establishing Diversity Jurisdiction in Franchise Dispute: The Value of Injunctive Relief

    05/03/2012 / Susan E. Tegt

    Susan Tegt contributed an article to the spring newsletter of The Franchise Lawyer.

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  • Supreme Court Rejects Patent on Drug Metabolite Correlation in Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories, Inc.

    04/30/2012 / John A. Kvinge

    On March 20, 2012, the United States Supreme Court issued its ruling in Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories, Inc., 566 U.S. ___ (2012). At issue were two patents covering the use of thiopurine drugs to treat autoimmune conditions such as Crohn’s disease. The Supreme Court concluded that the claims were impermissible attempts to patent a natural law, and held the patents invalid.

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  • New Generic Top-Level Domain System Expands Internet Addressing Scheme

    04/30/2012 / Molly T. Eichten

    A significant expansion of the Internet is underway. On January 12, 2012, the Internet Corporation for Names and Numbers (ICANN) began accepting applications from parties who wish to own and maintain new generic top-level domains.

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  • Class Action Suit Dismissed Because EEOC Failed to Properly Investigate Before Suing

    03/27/2012 / Christopher Harristhal

    On February 22, 2012, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed an EEOC class suit because the EEOC had failed to investigate the claims of the class members before it sued in September 2007 and failed to offer the employer/defendant a chance to settle those claims through conciliation as required by Section 706 of Title VII. EEOC v. CRST Van Expedited Inc. (8th Cir. Feb. 22, 2012). This case has potentially far-reaching implications for those employers facing an EEOC charge where the Commission fails to fully investigate the claims and come to a probable cause determination before suit. 

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  • Achieving Consolidation and Unit Growth Through Private Equity

    03/20/2012 / Chuck S. Modell

    Chuck Modell published an article that was featured in the March edition of the International Franchise Association's Franchising World magazine.

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  • A Recent Arms-Length Transaction May Be A Key To Lower Property Taxes

    03/13/2012 / Timothy A. Rye

    When a property is purchased at a price significantly below the current assessed market value, what impact can the sale have on the owner’s property taxes or on the taxes of owners of similar properties in the neighborhood? If the sale is arms-length does that guarantee a reduction in value and, as a result, a reduction in taxes? While a property that is purchased in an arms-length transaction will not result in a guaranteed reduction in taxes, it can be a significant – if not the primary factor – in obtaining a reduction.

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  • Thinking About A Property Tax Appeal? Be Prepared (in some cases) To Make Financial Disclosures

    03/13/2012 / Gary A. VanCleve

    The economic recession and the bursting of the real estate bubble have created great hardships for many property owners, if there is any silver lining, it is that there are great opportunities for owners to reduce their property taxes by challenging the assessed values of their properties for tax purposes. Owners of “income-producing” properties (properties that produce revenue through rents) who are considering filing a tax petition should be mindful that a legal requirement to pursuing such an appeal is that certain financial information must be produced to the taxing authority within a certain period of time after filing the petition—upon pain of dismissal for failure to do so.

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  • Survey of Computer Fraud and Abuse Act Cases

    03/02/2012 / Molly T. Eichten

    Molly Eichten was published in the November 2012 issue of the American Bar Association's publication, The Business Lawyer, for the article "Survey of Computer Fraud and Abuse Act Cases."

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  • Governor Vetoes Tort-Reform Bills Passed by Legislature

    02/28/2012 / Melissa Hagstrum Bayne

    Four tort reform bills recently were passed by the Minnesota House of Representatives and the Minnesota Senate. Despite vetos by Gov. Dayton, the substance of these bills are likely to reappear in legislation either later in this session or in future legislative sessions.

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  • Stop Online Piracy Act Causes Controversy Between U.S. Giants

    01/27/2012 / Molly T. Eichten

    Molly Eichten discusses the highly debated Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) first introduced by Representative Lamar Smith from Texas in October 2011.

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  • Court Rules Ex-Wife Cannot 'Lean' on Lien Defense To Avoid Personal Judgment

    01/12/2012 / Gary A. Van Cleve

    If a husband in a divorce settlement gives up his marital interest in the homestead to his wife and receives a lien on the homestead in excess of $67,000, is the husband’s only remedy if the wife does not pay to foreclose his lien on the homestead?

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  • Vacancy in the Tax Court

    01/12/2012 / Timothy A. Rye

    During the recent recession and downturn in the commercial real estate market there has been increased vacancy across many commercial real estate sectors through higher rates of default by tenants, higher concessions required to maintain occupancy, and reduced demand.

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  • Minnesota Supreme Court Clarifies the Statute of Limitations for Breach of Employment Contract Actions

    01/12/2012 / John A. Kvinge

    In Minnesota, most actions for breach of an employment contract are governed by the two-year statute of limitations set forth in Minn. Stat. § 541.07(5). This means that employees have two years from the date of the alleged breach of contract to file a lawsuit. In Park Nicollet Clinic v. Hamann, ___ N.W.2d ___, 2011 WL 6057981 (Minn. 2011), the Minnesota Supreme Court was faced with the question of whether each paycheck issued after a breach resets the two-year time period for bringing a claim.

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Showing Results 181 - 200 of 592