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David Herr Co-Authors Article with Judge Louise Dovre Bjorkman for Bench & Bar of Minnesota on Changes to the Minnesota Rules of Civil Procedure and the General Practice Rules

June 21, 2013

David Herr, partner in Maslon's Litigation Group, and Minnesota Court of Appeals Judge Louise Dovre Bjorkman, co-authored an article for the May/June 2103 issue of Bench & Bar of Minnesota titled, "Reducing Cost & Delay: Minnesota Courts Revise Civil Case Handling." The article focuses on the changes to the Minnesota Rules of Civil Procedure and the General Practice Rules which will take effect on July 1, 2013. As the article reports, the rules amendments flow from the work and recommendations of The Civil Justice Reform Task Force, established by the order of Chief Justice Lorie Gildea in 2010. Judge Bjorkman served as chair of the Task Force and David Herr chaired the Rules Subcommittee of the Task Force. Task Force members agreed that the primary challenge for the civil justice system was "excessive cost and delay that affect efficiency and make the courts less accessible."

The article relays that one of the most significant changes the Task Force suggested was the need for proportionality. Changes to the Proportionality Rule included adding a paragraph to Rule 1 that explicitly requires the parties and the court to consider the cost of litigation along with the importance of the issues in question. Herr and Judge Bjorkman note that "the placement of this provision in Rule 1 makes it clear that proportionality is not required only in discovery, but in the wide variety of decisions that affect the court process and impact the costs incurred by the parties."

Another significant change reported is the Filing of Actions. The article explains that prior to the Rule changes, Minnesota did not require that an action be filed with the court after service. The rule for commencement of actions has not changed - commencement is still accomplished by service and filing is not required at that time. But the rule change requires that a case be filed with the court within one year after being served. If it is not filed, the case will be deemed dismissed with prejudice. The article notes that "the goal of this rule is not to create more dismissals of actions, but to require that they be filed and placed under court management and scheduling with the first year."

David Herr is a highly regarded appellate lawyer and complex case litigator. He is frequently sought out to provide practical and sophisticated advice on how to resolve difficult, multi-party disputes in trial courts and arbitral forums, as well as in the appellate courts. 

To read the full article go to Reducing the Cost & Delay.


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