Attorneys

Education

Hamline University School of Law, J.D., 1976, Summa Cum Laude
- Silver Gavel Society

University of Missouri, B.A., 1973

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Minnesota
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit
Overview
Experience
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Steve Kirsch is a member of the Business Litigation section at Briggs and Morgan and practices principally in the areas of:

  • Products liability
  • Flammable fabrics
  • Toxic torts
  • Asbestos
  • Pharmaceutical and dietary supplement litigation
  • Mediation and Arbitration

Steve formerly practiced at the St. Paul-based Murnane law firm for almost 40 years, where his practice included preparation and trial of lawsuits in state and federal courts in Minnesota and throughout the country, as well as being national counsel in products liability cases for clients in the field of flammable fabrics, diet supplements, asbestos and others.

Steve is recognized as one of the nations most experienced lawyers in flammable fabrics litigation, handling hundreds of these cases. He also represents manufacturers and excess carriers in these complicated cases.

In serving as national counsel on behalf of his clients, Steve remains in tune with what is required of local counsel. As a result, he is skilled at working with local lawyers, retaining and preparing expert witnesses, and trying cases around the country. When acting as local counsel, he utilizes the firm’s strong reputation with Minnesota Judges and broad knowledge base in substantive and procedural law. 

Steve is licensed in Minnesota State and Federal courts, in the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals, and has been admitted pro hac vice in more than 35 state and federal court jurisdictions around the country. He has also been active in multi-district litigation over the years. 

After the tragic 2007 I-35W bridge collapse in Minneapolis, Steve was appointed as one of the three special masters of the I-35W Survivor Compensation Fund in 2008 by Chief Justice Russell Anderson. Steve and his colleagues were instrumental in evaluating victims claims and determining final compensation. They were also reappointed by Chief Justice Eric Magnuson in July, 2009. 

Steve also has a substantial ADR practice in mediation and arbitration. Over the past 15 years he has handled over 1,000 of these cases.

Honors & Awards

  • Top 40 Mediators and Top 100 Super Lawyers, Minnesota Super Lawyers, 2003-2015
  • Legal Services Corporation’s Board of Directors Pro Bono Award for work on behalf of Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services for the past 24 years, 2015
  • Appointed to the First Board of Trustees of the New Law School of Mitchell/Hamline, 2015
  • President’s Award for Work on the I-35W Bridge Collapse, 2012
  • Minnesota Judicial Council Award for work on the I-35W bridge collapse, 2009
  • Centennial Lifetime Leadership Award, Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services, 2009
  • Professional Excellence Award, Minnesota State Bar Association, 2009
  • Author’s Award on Products Liability, Minnesota State Bar Association, 1980
  • Top 25 Distinguished Alumni, Hamline University School of Law
  • Madison’s Who’s Who
  • Marquis Who’s Who
  • AV Rated
  • North Star Lawyer, Minnesota State Bar Association

Experience

  • Mesothelioma – 2010 – Johnston v. Union Carbide, Ramsey County, Minnesota, (defense verdict)
  • Tuttle v. Lorillard Tobacco Co., 377 F.3d, 917 (2004) (summary judgment granted and affirmed by 8th Circuit)
  • In re Ephedra Product Liability Litigation 314 F.Supp.2d 1373 (J. P. N. L. 2004) (Steve was one of five manufacturing defendants' national counsel on the defense liaison committee for this MDL before Judge Rakoff
  • Flammable Fabrics – 2001 – Shari Vail vs. K-Mart, Poughkeepsie, New York 2001 (defense verdict, settled on appeal)
  • Flammable Fabrics – 2000 – Gonnerman v. Mervyn’s, Los Angeles, California
  • Asbestos Wrongful Death – 2000 – Anderson v. Combustion Engineering, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 2000 
  • Hildebrand v. Allied Corporation, et al., 839 Fed.2d 396 (1987) (summary judgment granted and affirmed).
  • Products Liability – 1986 – Germann v. F.L. Smithe Machine Co., 395 N.W.2d 922 (Minn. 1986)
  • Flammable Fabrics – 1980 – Abel v. J.C. Penney Co., Inc., 488 F.Supp 891 (D. Minn. 1980) (directed verdict granted)
  • Zone of Danger – 1980 – Stadler v. Cross, 295 N.W.2d 552 (Minn. 1980) (summary judgment, affirmed on appeal)
  • Parental Immunity – 1980 – Nuessle v. Nuessle, 295 N.W.2d 505 (Minn. 1980) (summary judgment, affirmed on appeal)

Professional Affiliations

The American College of Trial Lawyers, Member

  • Minnesota Chapter President, 2003-2004

The American Board of Trial Advocates, Member

  • National Board Representative, 2005-2010
  • President – Minnesota Chapter, 2004

International Society of Barristers, Fellow

Defense Research Institute, Member

Minnesota State Bar Association

Pro Bono

Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services, Inc.

  • Chair, Campaign Leadership Committee 1991-2015

  • Volunteer