Attorneys

Education

University of Minnesota Law School, J.D., 1998, Cum Laude

Carleton College, B.A., 1990

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Minnesota
  • U.S. District Court District of Minnesota
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit

Clerkships

  • Honorable Stephen C. Aldrich, Hennepin County District Court
Overview
Experience
Affiliations
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Andy Carlson represents businesses and governmental entities in litigation and regulatory proceedings throughout Minnesota and the United States. He practices principally in the areas of:

  • State tax litigation
  • Business litigation
  • Telecommunications

State Tax Litigation 
Andy has represented Minnesota counties and cities, banks, property owners and utilities in property tax litigation. His property tax experience includes several lengthy trials before the Minnesota Tax Court and in Minnesota District Court, as well as multiple proceedings before the Minnesota Court of Appeals and Minnesota Supreme Court, concerning the valuation of large agri-business special purpose properties. He also represents businesses in the Minnesota Tax Court on matters involving state sales and use tax and other business taxes.

His recent tax litigation experience includes representing:

  • Electric and gas utilities and cooperatives with regard to property tax assessment.
  • Fortune 1000 companies in Minnesota Tax Court proceedings relating to exemptions from Minnesota sales and excise taxes.
  • A Minnesota county in complex property tax litigation involving a major former industrial property.
  • A Minnesota county in property tax litigation involving an ethanol facility.  
  • An owner of a portfolio of commercial properties with regard to property tax assessment. 
  • Assisting a non-profit seeking exemption from property tax.

Representative Cases:

In re Southern Minn. Beet Sugar Co-op, No. A10-255 (Minn. Ct. App. Sept. 21, 2010) (affirming district court’s valuation of agri-business facility)

Southern Minn. Beet Sugar Co-op v. County of Renville, 737 N.W.2d 545 (Minn. 2007), (affirming Tax Court’s determination that certain improvements were taxable real property and that agri-business facility was a "special purpose property")

Business Litigation and Insurance Coverage
Andy has litigated a wide variety of business cases before federal and state courts. Recent business litigation experience includes:

  • Representing a Minnesota manufacturer in connection with personal jurisdiction issues.
  • Representing a claimant in a complex bankruptcy matter.
  • Representing contractors and subcontractors in construction disputes.
  • Representing Minnesota companies whose assets were damaged in Hurricane Sandy with regard to insurance coverage.
  • Representing a Minnesota manufacturer with regard to insurance coverage for ongoing mass tort claims.
  • A trial concerning a shareholder dispute and buyout that resulted not only in a victory, but collection of the entire judgment plus attorneys' fees, notwithstanding the other party's attempt to evade collection through a bankruptcy filing.
  • Defending an asset-based lender against third-party claims arising from a debtor’s bankruptcy.
  • Litigating an auditing malpractice claim related to a Ponzi scheme.

Telecommunications 
Andy represents telecommunications companies, particularly wireless carriers, on issues such as regulatory compliance and interconnection litigation. He has extensive experience with eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) proceedings, including representing clients seeking to be designated as ETCs and assisting clients in developing programs for ETC compliance. Andy was also part of a team that secured victory for the nation’s largest wireless carrier in a case, litigated from federal district court to the U.S. Supreme Court, that presented the first test of state legislative authority over wireless rates and business practices.

His recent telecommunications experience includes:

  • Compliance analysis and responding to claims relating to federal and state telemarketing and auto-dialing requirements.
  • Advising an Internet service provider on privacy and terms of service issues.
  • Litigation of complex intercarrier compensation disputes in federal courts across the U.S.
  • Representing a municipal electric utility in connection with pole attachment matters.
  • Representing a wireless carrier in state interconnection arbitration proceedings following from the FCC’s 2011 Connect America Fund Order.
  • Merger and regulatory proceedings before the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission.
  • Analysis of ADA requirements applicable to hospitality industry websites.

Representative Cases:

Ronan Tel. Co. v. Alltel Commc’ns, Inc., No. CV 06-99-MDWM (D. Mont. Feb. 2, 2007) (substantially granting motion to dismiss access tariff claims as preempted)

NPCR, Inc. v. Boyle, No. 4:04cv3236 (D. Neb. Dec. 5, 2006) (reversing state commission’s denial of ETC designation) 

Andy has been admitted to practice pro hac vice before numerous federal courts, state courts and public utilities commissions.

Andy is the chair of the firm's Pro Bono Committee. He provides pro bono services through the Children’s Law Center, including arguing and winning a decision from the Minnesota Court of Appeals (In the Matter of the Welfare of the Child of T.T.B.), reversing a district court order that closed the child’s juvenile protection case even though the child was still in need of services. Andy also provides pro bono service in connection with Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid, of which he is a member of the board of directors. Andy was previously co-chair of the firm's Associate Evaluation Committee. 

While in law school, Andy was executive editor of the Minnesota Journal of Global Trade.

Before Andy joined Briggs, he was a founder of and partner in Peppermint, a company providing Internet marketing and distribution for independent musicians. Andy enjoys all types of music, running, playing tennis and playing guitar.

Honors & Awards

  • North Star Lawyer, Minnesota State Bar Association

Experience

  • Represented subcontractor seeking payment in Miller Act Action.
  • Represented general contractor defending against claim of improper backcharges.
  • Advocacy to State Utilities Commission in rulemaking proceeding.
  • On behalf of apartment building developer, negotiated telecommunications right-of-entry agreements with providers of telecommunications services.
  • Represented Fortune 500 company challenging tax assessment on R&D facility.
  • Advised out-of-state real estate investment company on property tax implications of proposed transaction.
  • Advised real estate developer on property tax implications and issues relating to proposed transaction.
  • Represented County in complex property tax litigation involving large former industrial facility.
  • Advised and assisted on pole attachments and right-of-way matters, including the development, negotiation and administration of pole license agreements, NESC compliance and administration of right-of-way ordinances.
  • Defended against allegations that client violated telemarketing and auto-dialing regulations.
  • Represented business owner in stockholder dispute litigation involving total disposition of company's assets and successful collection after opposing party declared bankruptcy.
  • Represented electric utility in annual property tax assessment process.
  • Represented County in property tax litigation involving ethanol plant.
  • Represented Fortune 1000 industrial company in protest of sales tax assessment related to Minnesota manufacturing operations.
  • Represented specialty chemical manufacturer in litigation with multiple carriers (including multiple layers) to obtain coverage for asbestos mass tort liabilities.
  • Advised wireless telecommunications carriers on compliance with federal and state requirements for Lifeline/Link-Up universal service programs in numerous states.
  • Provided regulatory due diligence analyses of universal service obligations and compliance in corporate merger and acquisition transactions in numerous states.
  • Advised large hospitality company on new ADA regulations relating to websites and to reservation process.
  • Represented wireless carriers in obtaining eligible telecommunications carrier designation from Federal Communications Commission and various state public utility commissions.
  • Represented telecommunications carrier in administrative proceeding and litigation relating to alleged ex parte contacts with state regulatory commission.
  • Represented wireless companies in federal courts in disputes with local telephone companies regarding compensation for calls between parties' networks in multiple states.
  • Represented clients in state public utility commission proceedings on a variety of regulatory matters in numerous states.
  • Advised client on insurance coverage and other options to recover losses due to Superstorm Sandy.
  • Represented investor in auditing malpractice claim against accounting firm that had audited company and failed to learn that company was involved in a Ponzi scheme.
  • Represented clients in state public utility commission proceedings to obtain CLEC certificates of authority.
  • Successfully represented food company in potential claims against carrier and warehouse for damages resulting from food product market withdrawal.
  • Successfully obtained injunction preventing a Minnesota statute affecting wireless carriers' contracts and customer service procedures from taking effect.
  • Minnesota Supreme Court interpreted state statutes specifying which structures at industrial plants were subject to property tax, affirming continued validity of "special purpose" property designation, and describing proper application of cost and sales approaches to valuation.
  • Represented County in defense of property tax assessment on large agri-industrial facilities.
  • Represented County in defense of property tax assessment on office and industrial properties.

Professional Affiliations

American Bar Association, Member

  • Communications Law Section
  • Public Utilities Law Section
  • Entertainment Law Section

Minnesota Bar Association, Member

  • Communications Law Section, Former President 
  • Arts and Entertainment Law Section, Member
  • Public Utilities Law Section, Member

Hennepin County Bar Association, Member

Federal Bar Association, Member

Minnesota Justice Foundation, Former Board of Directors Member

Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid, Board of Directors

Pro Bono

Children’s Law Center, MMLA

Chair of Briggs' Pro Bono Committee

Events