Quinlivan & Hughes, P.A.
1740 West St. Germain Street | St Cloud, MN 56301
:  (320) 251-1414 | Fax:  (320) 251-1415
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Quinlivan & Hughes, P.A.

Quinlivan & Hughes, P.A. is a St. Cloud, MN law firm with over 90 years of experience. We are organized as a professional association consisting of 20 attorneys.

Quinlivan & Hughes Sanders dances for Anna Marie's Alliance


Six couples took to the floor outside the Stearns History Museum Monday night to dance for the possibility to win $15,000 for their favorite charity.
 Watch the video to see Quinlivan's Melinda Sanders dancing for charity.

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By Laura A. Moehrle, Quinlivan & Hughes, P.A. and John A. Sullivan, Quinlivan & Hughes, P.A.

Civil Procedure professors liked to emphasize the distinction between how an action is commenced in federal court versus Minnesota state court. In law school, We understood the difference to be that an action commences in federal court when the summons and complaint are filed; and the action commences in Minnesota when the summons and complaint are served.

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Minnesota Supreme Court Extends UIM Excess Insurance Protection Coverage in Cases Where the Limit of the Policy for the Occupied Vehicle Exceeds the Limit of the Policy Under Which Excess Insurance Protection is Sought

Wednesday, August 5th the Minnesota Supreme Court handed down a decision providing UIM "Excess Insurance Coverage" — UIM coverage beyond that provided by an occupied vehicle's UIM insurance.

To read the opinion, please Click Here.

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Kenneth Bayliss Successfully Defended an Appeal in the Case of Klockmann v. County of Le Sueur

Kenneth BaylissQuinlivan attorney Kenneth Bayliss successfully defended an appeal in the case of Klockmann v. County of Le Sueur, a decision of the Minnesota Court of Appeals handed down on June 22, 2015.

The case involved landowners’ claim that the county board’s award of a conditional use permit was improper because it reversed an earlier decision. The landowners also contended that the decision was not supported by sufficient evidence and that the ordinance did not permit the use at issue. The Court of Appeals affirmed the county board on all grounds. It held that the county ordinance directly permitted the type of use at issue; that there was sufficient evidence in the record to support the board’s decision; and that the board had the inherent right to revisit an earlier decision based on the presentation of additional evidence.

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Big Win for Rajkowski and Holthaus - Supreme Court Rules In Favor Of Landowners

Utility Companies Must “Buy the Farm”

michael rajkowski  Rachael Holthaus

On March 4, 2015 the Supreme Court issued a ruling stating that utility companies must purchase a property in whole for fair market value if it constructs a 200KV or larger power line, and the line crosses any contiguous and commercially viable land.  Quinlivan & Hughes’ attorney Michael Rajkowski and Rachael Holthaus successfully argued on behalf of the clients Dale and Janet Tauer, who are owners of agricultural land that was slated to have a 200KV CAPX 2020 power line constructed across their property.
The utility, Great River Energy, argued that it should only have to compensate the Tauers for the easement needed to construct the power line, and no more. Rajkowski and Holthaus successfully argued that Great River Energy must purchase the property as a whole as elected by the Tauers. The Tauers made this election pursuant to Minnesota law, which seeks to protect agricultural landowners from utility companies that take their property for the use and construction of power lines. 
“This is a big win for landowners”, said Rajkowski.  “No longer will they have to worry about a power line decimating the value of their property.”
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Quinlivan & Hughes P.A. is pleased to announce the association of attorney John A. Sullivan.

john sullivan

Quinlivan & Hughes P.A. is pleased to announce our newest associate attorney, John A. Sullivan.  John was raised in the St. Cloud area. He received his B.A. from St. John’s University in 2008 and his J.D. from the University of Minnesota Law School in 2014.  While in law school, John interned in federal court with the Honorable Patrick J. Schiltz. He was admitted to the Minnesota Bar and joined the firm as an associate in October 2014. John practices primarily in the areas of civil litigation, medical malpractice defense and insurance defense.

Prior to joining Quinlivan & Hughes, John worked for the Minnesota Twins and was a writer for the Washington Nationals
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Defense Verdict: Minnesota Supreme Court Holds Defendent Must Pay ONLY Fair Share of Verdict

The Minnesota Supreme Court issued recently its decision in Staab v. Diocese of St. Cloud, holding that a defendant who is found to be 50% or less at fault cannot be ordered to pay more than its fair share of the total damages award. 
In this case, a jury found the Defendant Diocese 50% at fault for the Plaintiff’s injuries. The jury also found the Plaintiff’s husband was 50% at fault, even though he was not a party to the lawsuit. Plaintiff argued the Diocese should be forced to pay 100% of the damages award under Minnesota’s “reallocation” statute, arguing the judgment against the non-party husband was “uncollectible.” Minn. Stat. Sec. 604.02 subd. (2). The Diocese argued it was severally, but not jointly, liable, and therefore could not be forced to pay more than its fair share (50%), regardless of whether the remainder of the judgment was collectible from the plaintiff’s husband.  The Minnesota Supreme Court agreed with the Diocese. A full copy of the court’s opinion can be found here.
How this decision affects claim handling / evaluation: An at fault defendant who is found to be 50% or less at fault will only be required to pay in proportion to his or her percentage of fault.  This is true regardless of whether the other tortfeasors are parties to the lawsuit.  If you have a minimally (50% or less) at fault insured, your exposure for damages will be limited to the insured’s percentage of fault.  If, however, the insured is 51% or more at fault, the insured will be held “jointly liable” and could be responsible for up to 100% of the verdict.
The Diocese of St. Cloud was represented by Dyan Ebert, Laura Moehrle and Mike LaFountaine of Quinlivan & Hughes.  If you have any questions about this decision, please give us a call: (320) 251-1414 or reach us by email:;;
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Make a Profit AND Make a Difference

Read the latest article written by attorney Julie Fisk in the September/October Business Central magazine HERE.

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Quinlivan & Hughes, P.A is Proud to Announce the Election of Dyan Ebert as MDLA President

dyan ebert

Shareholder Dyan J. Ebert  was elected President of the Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association (“MDLA”) at its annual meeting held in conjunction with the Association’s Trial Techniques Seminar on August 15, 2014.  The MDLA has over 750 members and is dedicated to serving the needs of lawyers engaged primarily in the defense and trial of civil disputes.  In addition to becoming the MDLA President, Dyan also holds leadership positions in the Association of Defense Trial Attorneys, the Minnesota State Bar Association, and the Seventh District Bar Association.  Dyan’s practice is focused on employment and governmental liability, insurance coverage and general casualty law.  
Quinlivan & Hughes, P.A. has a long history with the MDLA. Richard Quinlivan was a co-founder and first President of the Association (1974-75).  Firm members Michael J. Ford (1992-93) and Steven S. Schwegman (2004-05) have also served as MDLA Presidents.
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Schwegman serves as Faculty Member at IADC Trial Academy at Stanford Law School

steven schwegman

Steve Schwegman  served on the faculty at the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC) 42nd Annual Trial Academy at the prestigious Stanford Law School in Palo Alto, CA. 

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Game Changer: Minnesota's Minimum Wage Law is Changing

Julie Fisk  Rachael Holthaus
Read the latest article written by attorneys Julie Fisk and Rachael Holthaus in the July/August Business Central magazine HERE.

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Quinlivan & Hughes, P.A. Elects Laura Moehrle Shareholder

laura moehrle

Quinlivan & Hughes, P.A. is pleased to announce Laura A. Moehrle has been elected shareholder of the firm, effective January 1, 2014.  

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Changes to the Minnesota Statutory Short Form Power of Attorney

john wenker
by: John Wenker, Attorney at Law

In 2013, the Minnesota legislature approved a number of changes to the Minnesota Statutory Short Form Power of Attorney. Although the form appears similar to previous versions, it does contain a number of significant changes.

Notice to the Principal and Attorneys-in-Fact

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Quinlivan & Hughes Attorney Kenneth Bayliss Prevails for Lake County on $5 Million Bond Claim


On December 5, 2013, the Minnesota District Court entered summary judgment for Quinlivan & Hughes client Lake County on a $5 million claim related to the sale of county revenue bonds. ORIX Public Finance, LLC, a Texas-based investment group, sued Lake County when Lake County could not perform on a bond purchase agreement.

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Worker’s Compensation Insurance Coverage for Farmers - If your hired farm laborer looks like an employee, works like an employee, gets paid like an employee, you’ve probably got an employee!

thomas christensonFarmers sometimes hire on farmhands or laborers when their operations grow. However, busy farmers may not consider the potential need for workers’ compensation insurance coverage until someone gets hurt and medical bills, disability payments and other forms of compensation must be paid. Some may be surprised especially if the farmer hasn’t needed to carry worker’s compensation coverage in the past because only family members were working on the farm.

When things begin to change in your farm operation, review your insurance policies. A farm liability insurance policy will not cover injuries to a farm laborer who meets the Minnesota Workers’ Compensation statutory definition of “employee.” If a farm laborer sustains a work-related injury and the farmer has no Worker’s Compensation coverage, the Minnesota Department of Labor & Industry (Special Compensation Fund) (“MN DOLI – SCF”) may pay the workers’ compensation benefits for the injured laborer and seek reimbursement directly from the farmer. The  MN-DOLI & SCF may also seek to impose penalties on the farmer for failure to have workers’ compensation insurance in place at the time the employee was injured. Minnesota statutes require qualified employers to purchase worker’s compensation insurance coverage for their employees. Even a farmer is considered a qualified employer if the farming operation meets certain criteria.

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First Annual Quinlivan & Hughes Tip-Off Tournament to be held at the College of St. Benedict

csb blazers logo

The First Annual Quinlivan & Hughes Tip-Off Tournament will be held Friday November 15th and Saturday November 16th in Claire Lynch Gymnasium at the College of St. Benedict.  Quinlivan & Hughes is a proud sponsor of Blazer athletics and wishes all players and coaches the very best in 2013-2014!
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Minnesota Workers' Compensation Q & A - Test Your Knowlege

thomas christenson
Quinlivan & Hughes attorney Thomas J. Christenson has more than 30 years of workers' compensation experience.  He invites you to test your Minnesota Workers' Compensation Law knowledge below.

What is workers' compensation in Minnesota?



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Cally Kjellberg-Nelson receives the MDLA’s Deb Oberlander Award

cally kjellberg

Quinlivan & Hughes’ attorney Cally Kjellberg-Nelson is the recipient of the 2013 Deb Oberlander Award from the Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association (MDLA).  The award, created in memory of MDLA’s former executive director who passed away in 2008, recognizes the professionalism, service, and contribution to excellence in the practice of law by a new lawyer. Cally served as  the Vice Co-Chair of the MDLA’s New Defense Lawyers Group (2011–2012) and Co-Chair (2012-2013).  Cally has also been involved with the Mid-Winter Conference Planning Committee (2012 and 2013), as well as with the Association’s 50th Anniversary Celebration held in conjunction with the Trial Techniques Seminar and the Trial Academy Planning Committee (2013).  Cally is published in Minnesota Defense Magazine, "Laches, A Defense That Is Alive and Well in Minnesota", Minnesota Defense Magazine | Spring 2010, and recently presented at the 2013 MDLA Trial Techniques Seminar on the recently amended Rules of Civil Procedure.

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Shareholders make top lawyers list

steven schwegmandyan ebertjames mcalpine
Quinlivan & Hughes, P.A. would like to congratulate shareholders Steven R. Schwegman and Dyan J. Ebert on their selection as 2013 Minnesota Super Lawyers and shareholder James S. McAlpine on his selection as a 2013 Minnesota Rising Star.  
Comprised by Thomson Reuters, the Minnesota Super Lawyer list recognizes the top 5% of lawyers in the state while the Rising Star list recognizes the top 2.5% of lawyers in the state under age 40.
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Rajkowski successful in argument before the Minnesota Supreme Court in CapX2020 high-voltage transmission line matter

michael rajkowskiQuinlivan & Hughes attorney Michael Rajkowski successfully argued before the Minnesota Supreme Court in the CapX2020 high-voltage transmission line matter that landowners are entitled to relocation costs and minimum compensation.  The decision overturns a Court of Appeals decision and affirms the ruling by Stearns County District Court Judge Frank Kundrat.  

The case involves landowners who invoked the Buy the Farm statute, which allows homeowners and farmers to force a utility to purchase their entire property at fair market value rather than selling an easement to the utility.  Judge Kundrat previously ruled that the homeowners who invoked the Buy the Farm statute were entitled to relocation costs and minimum compensation. A three-judge panel of the Court of Appeals, however, reversed that decision, in a 2-1 vote.  Court of Appeals Judge Edward Cleary dissented, writing that the landowners essentially were forced from their property by an involuntary taking by CapX and that they were entitled to the compensation and relocation costs.

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