A quick look through PACER and Minnesota Litigator reveals some interesting, as in the sense that Minnesotans say interesting, motion practice. Note: Minnesota Lawyer is relying on court docuemtns that, of course, doens’t always give all the details, especially about the parties’ relationship. In Gavaras v. Greenspring Media, a contract case over a noncompete agreement, U.S. District Court Judge Ann Montgomery found a 17-year- old noncompete agreement unenforceable. Okay. So the plaintiff quit his job with Minnesota Monthly, owned by Greenspring Media, and went to work with the Builders Association of the Twin Cities. An interlocutory appeal is pending. Meantime, the defendants requested a stay, in other words, to enforce the unenforceable noncompete, “to preserve the status quo and ensure the effectiveness of the eventual judgment.” But a stay applicant must make a strong showing of likely success on the merits. Hmmm. At any rate, Montgomery denied the request.
And in Thull v Techtronic Industries Co., Ltd., et al. U.S. District Court Judge Patrick Schiltz was asked to allow a plaintiff’s expert witness to testify, even though a federal judge in Oregon had ruled he could not. The plaintiff in the products liability case was injured by a band saw. The witness had defied a discovery order in Oregon relevant to this Minnesota litigation and his testimony was barred as a contempt sanction. Schiltz declined the opportunity to declare another court’s order invalid, and said that even if he could overrule the order he wouldn’t because the discovery sought was necessary.