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  • DOL Seeking Comments on Proposed Amendments to FLSA “White Collar” Exemptions

    07/13/2015 / Phyllis Karasov, Daniel J. Ballintine and Patrick Kratz

    On June 30, 2015, The U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, proposing changes intended to modernize and streamline exemptions to the minimum wage and overtime pay requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). The FLSA guarantees a minimum wage and overtime pay at a rate of not less than one and one-half times the employee’s regular rate for hours worked over 40 in a workweek. The FLSA also provides a number of exemptions, including the so-called “white collar” exemptions. Current regulations exempt salaried employees who are paid a minimum of $455 per week ($23,660 per year) and who qualify as executive, administrative, professional, outside sales, and/or computer employees.

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  • Supreme Court’s Decision Regarding Marriage Equality May Require Some Employers to Take Immediate Action

    07/01/2015 / Phyllis Karasov, Daniel J. Ballintine and Hilda Li

    On June 26, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, legalized same-sex marriage nationwide. Fourteen states with bans on same-sex marriage are affected by this decision.

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  • Professional Services Agreements and Acquisitions: Problems and Solutions

    06/30/2015

    The article "Professional Services Agreements and Acquisitions: Problems and Solutions," written by Patrick Cole, John Diehl and Matthew Bergeron was published by Minnesota CLE in June 2015.

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  • Court Watch: Franchise Alert - May 2015

    06/02/2015 / Cynthia Klaus and Bryan Huntington

    In the May 2015 issue of the Law Journal Newsletter’s Franchising Business & Law Alert, Cynthia Klaus and Bryan Huntington contributed two articles, "Circuit Court Reinstates Dealer's Defamation Claims Against Manufacturer" and  "Court Denies Franchisee's Motion to Vacate Attorneys' Fees Award."

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  • Patents Certainly Have Value, But 50 percent of Gross Margin?

    04/23/2015 / Craig Lervick

    What is a patent worth? What are appropriate royalties for a patent license? These are typically very difficult questions to answer, but something business owners and inventors always want to know.

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  • Issue Preclusion by Trademark Appeal Decisions

    04/23/2015 / Jim Quinn

    The Patent and Trademark Office and its “judicial body,” the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“TTAB”), consider the registrability of a mark; and not infringement. Federal courts determine whether an infringement has occurred. In TTAB proceedings a “likelihood of confusing similarity” analysis is used to determine whether the mark in an application conflicts with another mark.

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  • Actual Use Necessary for Service Mark Registration

    04/23/2015 / Jim Quinn

    Actual use of a mark is a prerequisite for registration in the Patent and Trademark Office. For a trademark, it is well settled that use occurs when a product has actually been sold. For a service mark, the determination of what constitutes use has been a bit more problematic because there are no tangible items involved.

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  • Minnesota Court of Appeals Expressly Limits Claims That Can Be Raised by Illegal Holdovers to Delay Eviction Proceedings

    04/21/2015 / Connor T. McNellis

    The Court of Appeals decision in Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation v. Mitchell will unquestionably make it more difficult for illegal holdover tenants to improperly delay eviction proceedings to retain possession of real property. The case unambiguously holds that attorneys may be sanctioned for improper attempts to delay eviction proceedings on behalf of the illegal holdover tenants.

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  • Environmental Review Becoming Tripwire for Southwest Light Rail?

    04/21/2015 / Gary A. Van Cleve

    Is the Metropolitan Council properly conducting environmental review for its 16-mile, 17-station Southwest Light Rail transit project (SWLRT) that extends through five cities from Minneapolis to Eden Prairie? This is the fundamental question raised in two federal lawsuits by affected property owners in Minneapolis and Minnetonka over the agency’s conduct of the environmental review process.

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  • Court of Appeals Grants Property Owners Judgment as a Matter of Law – Jury Verdict Reversed in Premises Liability Action

    04/21/2015 / Bryan J. Huntington

    ‎Minnesota courts continue to define the extent to which landowners must take steps to protect the safety of independent contractors on their property. In Smith v. Wells Concrete Prods. Co., No. A14-0644, 2015 Minn. App. Unpub. LEXIS 115 (Minn. Ct. App. Feb. 2, 2015), a divided panel of the Minnesota Court of Appeals reversed a jury verdict in favor of a contractor injured while working on land owned by the company that hired her.

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  • Franchisor Prevails at Trial Despite Finding of Technical Disclosure Violation

    03/02/2015 / Jim Susag and Bryan Huntington

    A decision hot off the press of the United States District Court for the Southern District of ‎Georgia, Massey, Inc. v. Moe’s Southwest Grill, LLC, No. 1:07-CV-0741, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS ‎‎12281 (Feb. 3, 2015), has several lessons for franchisors. First, it demonstrates how franchisors ‎can successfully avoid liability for technical disclosure violations by proving that franchisees ‎actually benefitted because of the policy about which they complain. Second, it demonstrates ‎that even when franchisees can make out a violation, franchisors can still prevail at trial. Third, it ‎proves that careful drafting of a franchise disclosure document (FDD) by counsel experienced enough to anticipate changes in ‎the business is critical to a young franchise system.

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  • Sick Time and Paid Leave Bills Proposed in Minnesota Legislature

    02/19/2015 / Phyllis Karasov

    Several bills regarding sick time and paid leave have been introduced to the Minnesota Legislature which, if passed, could have significant impact on Minnesota employers.

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  • Patents on Software and Business Methods – Still Possible but Challenging

    02/19/2015 / Craig Lervick

    In the past several months, it has been suggested that software and business methods can no longer be patented. Generalizations like this are often very easy to make, but the true analysis is typically more complex. This is especially true when examining the current state of law related to the patentability of software and business methods.

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  • Trade Dress: Another Way to Protect Websites

    02/19/2015 / Jim Quinn

    The law around trade dress is an offshoot of trademark law. While trademarks typically consist of words, phrases, or logos, trade dress relates to things like shapes, patterns, or the combination of features.

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  • New International Patent Protection Effective This Spring

    02/19/2015 / Jim Quinn

    Several years ago the United States adopted the Madrid Protocol, enabling firms in the U.S. to take advantage of international protection for their trademarks. This action enormously simplified the process for protecting trademarks on a worldwide basis, and dramatically reduced the cost of obtaining foreign protection.

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  • Federal Circuit Makes Two Significant Holdings Framing How Inter Partes Review Will Proceed

    02/19/2015 / Glenna Gilbert

    When introduced, the America Invents Act (“AIA”) provided revised mechanisms to challenge the validity of issued patents. These changes were intended to provide a more efficient and cost-effective method to deal with patent issues.

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  • State Regulators Circumvent Venue Clauses for Arbitration

    01/05/2015 / Sawan S. Patel and Susan E. Tegt

    Sawan Patel and Susan Tegt contributed the article, "State Regulators Circumvent Venue Clauses for Arbitration" to the Winter 2015 edition of The Franchise Lawyer.

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  • National Labor Relations Board Update

    12/31/2014 / Phyllis Karasov

    The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recently published a decision affecting the right of employees to use an employer’s e-mail system to discuss wages, hours and working conditions, and issued a new rule accelerating the time period for an election when a labor union has filed a representation petition.

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  • Tax Extender Law and ABLE Act Help Individual Taxpayers

    12/22/2014 / Tara Mattessich

    On Friday, December 19, 2014, President Obama signed the Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014 and the Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2014 (“ABLE Act”).

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  • More Special Assessments on the Horizon as Cities Contemplate Public Transportation Projects – Rights to Bear in Mind When Ordered to Pay a Special Assessment

    12/19/2014 / Bryan Huntington

    Business owners along University Avenue in St. Paul have recently received notice of proposed special assessments from the city related to construction of the central corridor light rail (the “Green Line”). A number of these owners have been ordered to pay thousands of dollars, even though they have had to struggle with a multitude of issues and challenges stemming from the light rail project, including limited parking and sidewalk blockages from snow. 

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Showing Results 81 - 100 of 600