The Impact of 'Exceptional' Statutes on Civil Litigation in Minnesota
75 Pages Posted: 23 Feb 2010
Date Written: 2000
This article examines the treatment of “exceptional” statutes – statutes intended to protect a specific class of persons against their own inability to protect themselves – by the Minnesota appellate courts. After an analysis of the origins of the negligence per se doctrine in Minnesota, the article briefly examines the relationship between negligence per se and common law negligence. Then, following a brief historical background discussion of earlier cases involving exceptional statutes, the article focuses on individual cases in which the exceptional statutes are implicated. The goal of the article is to determine whether the law the supreme court developed has been consistently adhered to by the courts and, if not, whether the deviations have in fact modified the standards used to determine whether a statute will be deemed “exceptional” so as to preclude the assertion of defenses in specific cases.
Keywords: Negligence per se, Minnesota law, exceptional statutes, torts, common law duty, statutory duty, strict liability, absolute liability
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