Minnesota

Practicing Admiralty and Maritime Law in the Twin Cities

The Mississippi River is one of the focal points of our firm's admiralty and maritime practice.  In Minnesota, where the river begins its long journey southward, our firm frequently is called upon to litigate on behalf of, and to counsel, maritime companies and agribusiness firms that operate in and about St. Paul and Minneapolis. By way of example:

In a Limitation of Liability proceeding brought by Brennan Marine, our client, after the sinking of its tugboat and drowning of a crew member, the court granted Brennan's motion to dismiss with prejudice claims for punitive and other non-pecuniary damages under the Jones Act and General Maritime Law. In the Matter of the Complaint of Brennan Marine, Inc., for Exoneration from, or Limitation of, Liability (2015 WL 4992321, U.S.D.C. D. Mn).

A 39-year-old deckhand's left leg was crushed against a dock wall, resulting in a below-the-knee amputation. After a 7-day trial in Ramsey County, Minnesota, the deckhand's attorney asked the jury to award more than $5 million dollars in damages. We convinced the jury that the deckhand was 85% responsible for causing his own injury. After reducing the damages for the deckhand's own comparative fault, the net jury verdict was $187,734.60, a small fraction of the more than $5 million that the deckhand had sought. Sammy Hull v. Upper River Services, LLC., 2012 WL 2862218 (Mn. Dist. Ct.).

One of our Members, Neal Settergren, is admitted to the Bar of the State of Minnesota and the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota. Neal, an experienced maritime and commercial litigator, has taught admiralty and maritime law to law students for several years and is a Minnesota native. Neal earned Phi Beta Kappa at Drake University and Order of the Coif at Washington University School of Law. He is admitted to the bar in the States of Minnesota, Illinois and Missouri.