LGN Group recognized by Minnesota Lawyer as one of its 2022 Attorneys of the Year Honorees

Congratulations to Lockridge Grindal Nauen P.L.L.P. Associate Arielle Wagner and LGN Partners Kate Baxter-Kauf and Kristen G. Marttila, who were recognized as a Group Honoree by Minnesota Lawyer for their work on the matter State of Minnesota v. Stevenson. The team successfully litigated a pro bono criminal appeal by a client who was unlawfully detained by police. In August 2022, the Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled that a sheriff’s deputy unconstitutionally expanded the scope of a traffic stop by opening the door of our client’s lawfully parked car without an individualized, reasonable, and articulable justification, and reversed the district court’s denial of the motion to suppress evidence obtained after the car door was opened. The team considers this a victory for individual rights and is proud that this case will help protect Minnesotans from unconstitutional searches in the future.

This case is the most recent example of the approximately one dozen appeals LGN attorneys have handled as Special Assistant Public Defenders in conjunction with the Minnesota Board of Public Defense Appellate Public Defender’s Office and the Minnesota State Bar Associate Appellate Practice Section.  LGN Partner Kristen Marttila serves as the firm’s pro bono committee chair, while Partner Kate Baxter-Kauf oversees the criminal appellate pro bono defense practice.

LGN Attorneys Submit Amicus Brief on behalf of COSAL and AAI

LGN attorneys Joe Bourne and Kristen Marttila, on behalf of the Committee to Support the Antitrust Laws (COSAL), along with Randy Stutz on behalf of the American Antitrust Institute (AAI), submitted an amicus brief to the Ninth Circuit today in support of the plaintiffs in Sidibe v. Sutter Health, a certified class action that was tried to a jury. 

The plaintiffs in the litigation below claimed they paid supracompetitive prices for health insurance premiums because of Sutter Health’s anticompetitive conduct. The plaintiffs alleged Sutter Health violated the federal and California antitrust laws when it forced health plans to negotiate with its hospitals on a systemwide (rather than hospital-by-hospital) basis beginning in the late 1990s or early 2000s and to accept anticompetitive provisions in its contracts. 

In their brief, COSAL and AAI argue that the district court erred in excluding certain pre-class period evidence that was contemporaneous with the defendant’s consideration and implementation of the challenged restraint of trade. This exclusion was error because evidence regarding the history of the restraint and the reasons for its adoption are relevant to the jury’s assessment of a Sherman Act claim, and is independently sufficient to demonstrate a violation under California’s Cartwright Act. The brief also argues that the district court erred in allowing the jury to consider evidence of market power and market definition from the perspective of the individual insured, rather than from the perspective of the health plans, which the Ninth Circuit and other courts of appeal have recognized are the actual payors within the healthcare marketplace.

LGN is a longtime member of COSAL, which was founded in 1986 to promote and support the enactment, preservation, and enforcement of a strong body of antitrust laws in the United States. Ms. Marttila serves as the vice-chair of COSAL’s amicus committee.

LGN Attorneys Successfully Argue Criminal Appeal in Pro Bono Matter

LGN attorneys Arielle Wagner, Kate Baxter-Kauf, and Kristen Marttila successfully worked on and argued a criminal appeal in a pro bono matter involving a client who was unlawfully detained by police. On August 8, 2022, the Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled that the sheriff’s deputy unconstitutionally expanded the scope of a traffic stop by opening the client’s car door without an individualized, reasonable, and articulable justification, and reversed the district court’s denial of the motion to suppress evidence obtained after the car door was opened. The team considers this a victory for individual rights and hopes this decision helps clarify the boundaries of these types of traffic stops in the future. Read the full opinion here.

LGN attorneys participate in criminal appeals through the MSBA Appellate Section’s Pro Bono Project with the Appellate Public Defender.

19 LGN Attorneys Named Super Lawyers & Rising Stars

Lockridge Grindal Nauen is proud to announce that nineteen of the firm’s attorneys were selected as 2022 Minnesota Super Lawyers and Rising Stars.

Kate Baxter-Kauf, Joe Bruckner, Brian Clark, Susan Ellingstad, Gregg Fishbein, Yvonne Flaherty, Ted Grindal, Dick Lockridge, Kristen Marttila, Charlie Nauen, Rebecca Peterson, Karen Hanson Riebel, Robert Selquist, Heidi Silton, and David Zoll have been named Super Lawyers. Super Lawyers recognizes the top 5% of outstanding lawyers in each state, who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement, from more than 70 practice areas. 

Joe Bourne, Rebecca Kanninen, Rachel Kitze Collins, and Arielle Wagner have been named Rising Stars. The Rising Stars recognition is given to the top 2.5% of up-and-coming attorneys in the state who are either 40 years or younger, or who have been practicing for 10 years or less. 

The selection process is multi-phased including independent research, peer nominations, and peer evaluations.

LGN Partner Kristen Marttila Presents Legal Writing Seminar as part of American Bar Association Antitrust Section’s Summer Series

Kristen Marttila

LGN Partner Kristen Marttila presented a Legal Writing Seminar as part of the American Bar Association Antitrust Section’s summer series. She and fellow panelists Jimmy Attridge, U.S. Department of Justice, Antitrust Division, and Dan Oakes, Axinn Veltrop & Harkrider LLP, discussed best practices for antitrust attorneys as they approach all manner of writing, including briefing, agency-facing writing, meet-and-confer correspondence, and internal memoranda. The discussion was facilitated by Caroline Boisvert, an associate at Axinn Veltrop and a member of the Antitrust Section’s Young Lawyer Division. The panel is part of a virtual series organized by LGN Partner Heidi Silton through her work with the ABA and geared toward law students and newer lawyers interested in antitrust and consumer-protection work. 

LGN Attorneys Confirmed to Leadership Positions in Minnesota Chapter of the Federal Bar Association

LGN Attorneys Kristen Marttila, Kate Baxter-Kauf, and Simeon Morbey have been elected to leadership positions in the Minnesota Chapter of the Federal Bar Association for the coming 2022-2023 year. Kristen will co-chair the Mentorship Committee and will continue serving on the Board of Directors, Kate will co-chair the Mass Tort, Multi-District Litigation, and Class Action Practice Group, and Simeon will co-chair the Civil Discovery Practice Group.

LGN Attorneys Attend Minnesota FBA Monthly Luncheon

LGN attorneys Kristen MarttilaMaureen Kane BergKate Baxter-Kauf, and Leona Ajavon, along with current law clerk Eura Chang, attended the March Monthly Luncheon of the Minnesota Chapter of the Federal Bar Association.      

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Kristen Marttila

Kristen G. Marttila

LGN Partner Kristen Marttila Serves as a Panelist in Federal Bar Association Webinar

LGN Partner Kristen Marttila recently participated as a panelist for the Federal Bar Association’s webinar Nuts and Bolts of Federal Clerkships, designed to equip law students and newer lawyers from a variety of backgrounds to apply for federal clerkships. Her fellow panelists were the Honorable Rossie D. Alston, Jr., U.S. District Judge for the Eastern District of Virginia, and John S. Moran, a partner with McGuireWoods in Washington, D.C., and moderator Charles B. Molster, III a principal in the Law Offices of Charles B. Molster, III PLLC, in Washington, D.C.

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LGN Attorneys File Amicus Brief on Behalf of COSAL

LGN attorneys Charles NauenHeidi SiltonJoe BrucknerKristen Marttila, and Justin Erickson, on behalf of the Committee to Support the Antitrust Laws (“COSAL”), filed an amicus brief supporting the petition for rehearing en banc in the Eleventh Circuit in Johnson v. NPAS Solutions, LLC. In Johnson, a divided panel categorically banned courts from granting service awards to class representatives.

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