Important Cases

Attorneys at the law firm of Mason & Helmers have been involved in many significant lawsuits involving business transactions and probate disputes. Attorney Rodney Mason has represented the owners of small businesses, local and national trust companies and many, many individuals. He has successfully litigated many cases in Minnesota state and federal District Court. He has been involved in 16 appeals in the appellate courts of Minnesota and Wisconsin and in the United States Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit. Several decisions in the appellate courts have been reported or cited. Among these are the following:

International Financial Services Inc. v. Franz Engineering, 515 N.W.2d 379 (Minn. Ct. App. 1994), rev'd 534 N.W.2d 261 (Minn. 1995). In this matter, a small family-owned business purchased high-technology equipment with the purchase price in the mid six-figure range. When the equipment failed to function as promised, this litigation followed. The litigation involved proceedings over a period of eight years in Hennepin County District Court and U.S. Bankruptcy Court and a trial by jury in Hennepin County District Court. The jury reached a verdict that awarded the client more than $1 million, an amount that was later reduced by the Court of Appeals and modified by the Supreme Court of Minnesota. The case involved complicated technology issues and complex Uniform Commercial Code damages, risk of loss and limitation of warranty issues. It is mentioned in the Uniform Commercial Code service reporter.

Hagen v. Burmeister, 633 N.W.2d 497 (Minn., Aug 02, 2001)(NO. C3-00-496). This matter involved the purchase an insurance agency, an employment agreement and a covenant not to compete. The seller later resigned and attempted to compete for insurance business with the customers whose accounts he had sold to the purchaser. This litigation commenced and resulted in a court award for the client in the low six-figure range. A major issue in the case involved the legal liability of the seller's subsequent employer for the seller's wrongful competition in violation of the covenant not to compete. This matter went to the Minnesota Court of Appeals twice and involved proceedings over a period of six years.

Laska v. Laska, 255 Wis.2d 823, 646 N.W.2d 393, 2002 WI App 132 (Wis.App., Apr 30, 2002)(NO. 02-0022-FT). This matter involved a probate dispute that lasted more than six years. It involved a dispute between the decedent's grandchildren from his first marriage and his second spouse. Although many issues were hotly disputed, the appeals proceedings dealt with the requirements of an enforceable settlement agreement under the laws of the state of Wisconsin.