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Special-Term Orders

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This archive includes orders decided by the Court of Appeals at its Special-Term Session, the weekly calendar where a panel of three Court of Appeals judges considers jurisdictional and procedural matters. This archive does not include orders before January 1, 2023 or orders that were not decided at Special Term. Orders not included in this archive may be accessed via the Minnesota Appellate Courts’ public access system, PMACS.

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Results 1 - 10 of 416
Kevin Bruntlett and his mother Evelyn Bruntlett executed an agreement giving Kevin the option to purchase the family farm from Evelyn for $200,000. After nearly four decades, Kevin’s attorney sent Evelyn a letter asserting that Kevin had already paid the $200,000 purchase price in full, mostly through his labor, and asking Evelyn to sign the property over to Kevin. After trial on the quiet-title action that followed, the district court rejected Kevin’s argument that the attorney’s letter effectively exercised the purchase option, and it barred Kevin from ever exercising the option on the equitable ground of laches. On Kevin’s appeal from that decision, we hold that the evidence supports the district court’s decision that the letter did not exercise the contracted option to purchase and therefore did not require Evelyn to convey the property to him. But because the option agreement gave Kevin a lifetime to exercise the option and the district court misapplied the law and clearly erred in fact findings bearing on its equity-based decision prohibiting Kevin from ever exercising his right to purchase, we hold that the district court abused its discretion in applying laches to void the option agreement. We also hold that the district court erred by deeming the contract revoked. We therefore affirm in part, reverse in part, and remand.
Date: January 03, 2023
The Airline Deregulation Act of 1978, Pub. L. No. 95-504, 92 Stat. 1705 (codified as amended in scattered sections of 49 U.S.C.), preempts breach-of-contract and unjust-enrichment claims alleging that the fee an airline charges for reissuing a ticket is an illegal penalty under Minnesota law.
Date: February 08, 2000
Appellant challenges his convictions for first- and second-degree criminal sexual conduct, arguing that the district court abused its discretion by admitting the testimony of an expert witness and that the state’s evidence of first-degree criminal sexual conduct was insufficient to prove his guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Because the district court did not abuse its discretion in determining that the expert witness was qualified to testify as to his opinion on the behaviors of children disclosing sexual abuse and that the expert’s testimony was foundationally reliable, and because the evidence supported appellant’s conviction for first-degree criminal sexual conduct, we affirm.
Date: January 03, 2023
A commission under a real estate contract is not recoverable from the seller where the buyer refuses to purchase the property.
Date: February 29, 2000
Appellant-tenant sued respondent-landlord under a breach-of-contract theory after appellant slipped and fell on ice outside her apartment building. Appellant appeals from a * Retired judge of the Minnesota Court of Appeals, serving by appointment pursuant to Minn. Const. art. VI, § 10. district court’s grant of summary judgment for respondent, arguing that summary judgment was not appropriate because (1) the implied covenants of habitability in Minn. Stat. § 504B.161 (2022) created a contractual duty that respondent breached and (2) a genuine issue of material fact existed as to the condition of the sidewalk. We affirm.
Date: January 03, 2023
1. Provisions in the assigned claims plan that require an insurer to pay basic economic loss benefits apply to a claim for benefits that arises from a motor vehicle accident that occurred on the Red Lake Reservation and involved an uninsured motor vehicle that was licensed and registered under the laws of the Red Lake Reservation. 2. Under the assigned claims plan, the minor children of the owner of an uninsured automobile may obtain basic economic loss benefits for losses arising out of injury to the owner of the uninsured automobile.
Date: February 15, 2000
In this appeal from the district court’s order denying postconviction relief from a criminal-sexual-conduct conviction, appellant challenges his sentence. Appellant argues that the district court abused its discretion by denying his motion for a downward dispositional departure and relying on “offense-based characteristics” instead of “the offender-based Trog criteria.” Because the district court did not abuse its discretion when it (a) imposed a guidelines sentence after considering the parties’ submissions and arguments and (b) denied postconviction relief after reviewing the sentencing record, we affirm.
Date: January 03, 2023
When a party moves to vacate an arbitration award on the ground that the arbitrator exceeded his powers, the only question reviewable is whether the arbitrator addressed an arbitrable issue; a court may not examine the record or evidence underlying the arbitration award, or otherwise delve into the merits of the award.
Date: February 01, 2000
Following his convictions for aiding and abetting first-degree burglary and fourth- degree criminal damage to property, appellant argues that he is entitled to a new trial because the district court erroneously instructed the jury on an aiding and abetting theory of liability not argued by the state or supported by the evidence at trial. Because any error in instructing the jury did not affect appellant’s substantial rights or the fairness and integrity of the proceedings, we affirm.
Date: January 03, 2023
In a criminal sexual conduct trial the prosecutor moved for closure of the courtroom during the testimony of two juvenile victims. Appellant did not object and instead agreed to a limited closure. The trial court made no finding of necessity for closure, but appellant's failure to object and his agreement waived any error that could be predicated on the lack of findings.
Date: February 01, 2000
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