Ben Kappelman
PEOPLE

Ben Kappelman

Partner
kappelman.ben@dorsey.com
Minneapolis P +1 (612) 492-6744 F +1 (612) 395-5451 Missoula P +1 (406) 721-6025 F +1 (406) 543-0863

Overview

BEN HELPS CLIENTS PROTECT THEIR INVESTMENTS, DEFEND THEIR INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY, AND GUARD THEIR REPUTATIONS IN HIGH-STAKES LITIGATION.
Ben routinely serves clients in the health care, manufacturing, construction, and energy industries. They trust Ben’s judgment and strategic management of litigation costs to pursue favorable outcomes efficiently. Ben believes the best lawsuit is one resolved quickly, but he has the experience and dedication to press through lengthy and challenging disputes to achieve his clients’ goals. 

Ben’s expertise includes patent infringement and invalidity claims, contract interpretation matters, trade secrets and employee competition disputes, and health litigation. Ben routinely practices before federal and state courts in Minnesota and his home state of Montana.

Education & Admissions

Suffolk University Law School (J.D., 2011), summa cum laude, Law Faculty Outstanding Student Award, Daniel J. Fern Award, Academic Leadership Scholarship, Suffolk University Law Review

Boston University (B.A., 2008)

Admissions

  • Montana
  • New York
  • United States Patent and Trademark Office
  • Maine
  • Minnesota
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Montana
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims

Clerkships

  • Maine Supreme Judicial Court, Associate Justice Ellen A. Gorman, 2011-2012
  • Maine Supreme Judicial Court, Associate Justice Donald G. Alexander, 2012-2013

Experience

Representative Litigation

  • Loenbro Inspection, LLC v. Sommerfield, No. 18-CV-01943-PAB, 2018 WL 3659396 (D. Colo. Aug. 2, 2018): The U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado entered a temporary restraining order in favor of Dorsey’s client, a Montana-based oilfield services company. The order barred the company’s former employees from using its custom configurations for phased array ultrasonic testing equipment in violation of the federal Defend Trade Secrets Act.
  • Alston v. United Healthcare Servs., Inc., No. CV 17-81-BU-SEH, 2018 WL 1382514 (D. Mont. Mar. 19, 2018): The U.S. District Court for the District of Montana dismissed all claims against Dorsey’s clients, a national health insurer and a pharmacy benefits manager, concluding that the plaintiff’s challenge to their Medicare Part D coverage determination was preempted and subject to administrative exhaustion.
  • Drake Water Technologies, Inc. v. National-Oilwell Varco, L.P., No. 6:17-cv-38-SEH, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 85062 (D. Mont. Jun. 2, 2017): The U.S. District Court for the District of Montana enforced a forum-selection clause and transferred to Texas a lawsuit against Dorsey’s client, a worldwide service and equipment provider to the oil and gas industry. 
  • Montana AFL-CIO v. McCulloch, 380 P.3d 728 (Mont. 2016): The Montana Supreme Court rejected a pre-election constitutional challenge to a citizen ballot initiative championed by Dorsey’s client. The initiative sought funding for biomedical research on brain diseases, brain injuries, and mental illnesses.
  • Techmanski v. Quanta Field Service, LLC, No. CV-15-97-M-DWM, 2015 WL 7005617 (D. Mont. Nov. 2, 2015): The U.S. District Court for the District of Montana decided Dorsey’s client, a Colorado company, did not subject itself to suit in Montana by acquiescing to its employee’s decision to occasionally work from his home there.  The court held it lacked personal jurisdiction and sent the case to Colorado.
  • Barite Partners LLC v. Stefan, No. 27-CV-14-17267, 2015 WL 6776450 (Minn. Dist. Ct. Oct. 30, 2015): Dorsey’s client, a Montana company, avoided entanglement in a Minnesota lawsuit after Dorsey convinced the court that the company had insufficient ties to Minnesota to warrant the court’s exercise of personal jurisdiction over it.
  • Wyo–Ben, Inc. v. Bixby, 339 P.3d 1255 (Mont. 2014): The Montana Supreme Court, ruling on an issue of first impression, agreed with Dorsey’s client if a shareholder asserting dissenters’ rights under Montana’s version of the Model Business Corporation Act demonstrates a material and adverse change to his or her individual voting rights “in respect of” all the shares owned by that shareholder, the shareholder is entitled to redemption of all shares, not only those shares that were directly and adversely affected.
  • Standard Register Co. v. Keala, No. 14-00291, 2014 WL 3420785 (D. Hawaii July 11, 2014): The U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii rejected an attempt to obtain a temporary restraining order against a Dorsey client based on allegations of trade secret misappropriation and tortious interference with business relationships. After considering Dorsey’s opposition, the court held that the plaintiffs’ likelihood of success was so low that it did not need to weigh other TRO factors before denying the plaintiffs’ request.
  • In re Mission Critical Data Center: After a five-day trial, a civil jury returned a verdict in favor of Dorsey’s client, a national design-builder, on its claims that one of its subcontractors was negligent in providing electrical design services for the construction and expansion of a Tier III data center for a Fortune 50 company.
  • Rocky Mountain Biologicals, Inc. v. Microbix Biosystems, Inc., 986 F. Supp. 2d 1187 (D. Mont. 2013): The U.S. District Court for the District of Montana awarded summary judgment for Dorsey client Irvine Scientific Sales Company on the plaintiffs’ claims for tortious interference of contract. In addition to some favorable procedural rulings, the court found that Irvine’s good-faith assertions of its own contractual rights could not be tortious under Montana law.

News & Resources

Articles

Supreme Court Settles Circuit Split and Reads the False Claims Act Statute of Limitations Provision Broadly in Boon to Relators
Honey Badger Don’t Care About Trademark Infringement, But The Ninth Circuit Does
Sixth Circuit: Timing of Physician Certification for In-Home Care Remains Material After Escobar
Trademarks Can Originate from Fictional Sources:  Fifth Circuit Upholds Trademark Protection for The Krusty Krab
Third Circuit: False Claims Act Liability Premised on an Anti-Kickback Statute Violation Requires Proof that at Least One Federal Claim Resulted from an Improper Referral or Recommendation
Third Circuit: False Claims Act Liability Premised on an Anti-Kickback Statute Violation Requires Proof that at Least One Federal Claim Resulted from an Improper Referral or Recommendation
Alleging Improper Use of Funds Legitimately Obtained from the Government Insufficient to State FCA Retaliation Claim
Court Enforces CFPB Civil Investigative Demand Against Tribal Lending Entity; Rejects Argument that Tribal Sovereignty Precludes Such Demands
Eighth Circuit Determines that Compliance with Reasonable Interpretation of Government Regulation Sufficient to Avoid FCA Liability (Absent a Government Warning to the Contrary)
DOJ Intervenes In FCA Suit Against Subcontractor That Allegedly Failed to Comply With Specifications
Fifth Circuit Concludes That FCA Claim Was Not Covered By Insurance Policy
It Must Be Done!!?? Impossibility or Impracticability as an Excuse to Performance . . . Or Not, ABA Forum on the Construction Industry (with John T. Clappison & Jocelyn L. Knoll)
Long and Winding Road: The Role of Courts, Zero Tolerance and School Exclusion in Massachusetts, Massachusetts Lawyers Journal, May 2011, at 22 (with Isabel Raskin & Joan Meschino)
Note, When Rape Isn’t Like Combat: The Disparity Between Benefits for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder for Combat Veterans and Benefits for Victims of Military Sexual Assault, 44 Suffolk University Law Review 545 (2011)

News & Press Mentions

Dorsey & Whitney Names New Partners
Dorsey Attorney Ben Kappelman Elected to PAI Board
Dorsey Pro Bono Team Gets Housing Suits Dismissed Against City of St. Paul
Dorsey Partner Skip Durocher Discusses City of St. Paul Pro Bono Case
Dorsey Attorney Ben Kappelman Comments on DOJ Involvement in Whistleblower Cases
Dorsey & Whitney Represents Kværner ASA in $74 Million Arbitration Award

Events & Speaking Engagements

Fifth Annual DorsEdiscovery Forum

Legal Writings

  • The Work Product Doctrine, published in the Attorney-Client Privilege Deskbook (Minnesota CLE 2018)

Professional & Civic

Professional Achievements

  • Ben maintains an active pro bono practice and is an Accredited Attorney with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Member, American Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Member, American Bar Association Forum on the Construction Industry
  • Member, Federal Bar Association

Accolades

North Star Lawyer logo

  • MSBA North Star Lawyer, 2014-2017
Ben Kappelman