Mischief Makers Beware: Court Sanctions Railroad For Destruction Of Evidence And Litigation Abuses

A week before trial was scheduled to begin in Kowalewski v. BNSF, a Hennepin County judge sanctioned the railroad for its extensive cover-up and litigation abuses. This misconduct included destruction of and intentional failure to preserve evidence at the scene; destroying shipping papers for the railroad cars involved; destroying video of the railroad yard; paying witnesses; conducting a sham investigation; making false statements to the FRA; refusing to comply with the Court’s orders; and other discovery and litigation abuses were uncovered during the course of the case. The entire 42-page order is attached here. As part of those sanctions, the…

Continue Reading Mischief Makers Beware: Court Sanctions Railroad For Destruction Of Evidence And Litigation Abuses

Child Support Basics in Minnesota

Child support is a common element of a divorce involving minor children, paternity, and custody actions in Minnesota. A child support order can include three different components: basic child support, medical support, and child care support. Basic support is almost always a part of a child support order as it includes payments from one parent (payor/obligor) to the other (payee/obligee) for daily needs such as food, shelter, and clothing for the child(ren). Medical support is payment for the child(ren)’s health, dental, and/or vision insurance premiums, and also the child(ren)’s uninsured expenses such as co-pays, deductibles, prescriptions, eyeglasses, orthodontia, etc. Child…

Continue Reading Child Support Basics in Minnesota

Record-Setting FELA Verdict

A Hennepin County jury awarded a record-setting FELA verdict of $15,343,753 to Scott Kowalewski for severe and progressive neurological injuries he suffered while working in a BNSF railroad yard in 2014. The accident happened when BNSF mishandled tanker cars carrying toxic petrochemicals in the railyard, causing the cars to vent poisonous gas where Mr. Kowalewski was working. The cars were being hauled through the BNSF Northtown Yard in Minneapolis on their way to Canada. Attorney Joe Sayler of the Bolt Hoffer Boyd Law Firm was Co-Counsel on the trial team. Scott Kowalewski experienced serious neurological problems immediately after he was…

Continue Reading Record-Setting FELA Verdict