Minnesota Civil Appeals, Consumer Protection, DWI Defense

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Biography of Martin A. Carlson

A 1994 graduate of Macalester College, Marty graduated with high honors and was voted a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Marty also graduated with honors from the University of Minnesota Law School, and has been recognized as a “Rising Star” by Minnesota Law and Politics in every year since 2004.

Marty worked his way through law school, first as a law clerk at 3M Company, and then with the Minneapolis law firm of Lockridge Grindal Nauen P.L.L.P. While at 3M, Marty assisted with the investigation and prosecution of a major employment-related intellectual property dispute involving one of the company’s principal competitors. At Lockridge Grindal Nauen, where Marty worked as both a law clerk and associate attorney, he worked on matters ranging from consumer protection cases to employment disputes to commercial litigation and ERISA welfare benefits suits.

After joining the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office in 2004, Marty represented the State of Minnesota in a variety of matters impacting the public welfare. In State v. Grant Holdings et al., Ramsey County District Court File No. C6-03-12006, Marty was instrumental in obtaining a permanent injunction against an accused home equity stripper, as well as restitution to affected homeowners of $500,000. In State v. Bernard Haldane et al., Ramsey County District Court File No. C8-04-4676, Marty was again successful in obtaining $300,000 in restitution and a permanent injunction against a company that was alleged to have operated a deceptive career counseling service. As an attorney in the Office’s Public Safety Division, Marty aggressively enforced the State’s DWI laws, and also served as counsel to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

Since returning to private practice, Marty has represented individuals and companies in a variety of difficult circumstances, including homeowners in foreclosure, companies in commercial disputes, and individuals in conflict with the State of Minnesota. Recently, Marty submitted a friend of the court brief to the Minnesota Supreme Court on behalf of Common Cause Minnesota and the League of Women Voters Minnesota in the matter of Brayton v. Pawlenty, successfully challenging Governor Pawlenty’s unilateral elimination of funding for programs designed to aid the State’s poorest and neediest residents.



Representative Cases:

  • Brayton et al. v. Pawlenty, 781 N.W.2d 357 (Minn. 2010).

  • Overvig v. Commissioner of Public Safety, 730 N.W.2d 789 (Minn. Ct. App. 2007), rev. denied (2007).

  • Abbott v. Commissioner of Public Safety, 760 N.W.2d 920 (Minn. Ct. App. 2009) (on brief).

  • Chastek v. Commissioner of Public Safety, No. A08-802, 2009 WL 911043 (Minn. Ct. App. April 7, 2009).

  • Stevens v. Commissioner of Public Safety, Nos. A08-0727, A08-1130, 2009 WL 910995 (Minn. Ct. App. April 7, 2009) (tried successfully in district court, affirmed on appeal).

  • Patterson v. Commissioner of Public Safety, No. A08-0761, 2009 WL 671569 (Minn. Ct. App. March 17, 2009) (on brief).

  • Hubbard v. Commissioner of Public Safety, No. A08-0714, 2009 WL 605744 (Minn. Ct. App. March 10, 2009) (tried successfully in district court, affirmed on appeal).

  • Schroeder v. Commissioner of Public Safety, No. 07-2247, 2008 WL 5334727 (Minn. Ct. App. Dec. 23, 2008) (tried successfully in district court, affirmed on appeal).

  • Londo v. Commissioner of Public Safety, No. A08-0296, 2008 WL 5137152 (Minn. Ct. App. Dec. 9, 2008).

  • Reese v. Commissioner of Public Safety, No. A06-1991, 2008 WL 72846 (Minn. Ct. App. Jan. 8, 2008), rev. denied (2008).

  • Hess v. Commissioner of Public Safety, Nos. A07-1361, A08-0166, 2008 WL 2796660 (Minn. Ct. App. July 22, 2008).

  • LaFontaine v. Commissioner of Public Safety, No. A07-0728, 2008 WL 2340389 (Minn. Ct. App. June 10, 2008).

  • Sternhagen v. Commissioner of Public Safety, No. A07-0386, 2008 WL 467436 (Minn. Ct. App. Feb. 12, 2008).

  • Friederichs v. State of Minnesota ex rel. Hatch, Civ. No. 05-2868, 2005 WL 3543828 (D. Minn. Dec. 23, 2005).

  • Old Republic Ins. Co. v. Erickson, Civ. No. 05-2868, 2005 WL 3543828 (D. Minn. Dec. 21, 2005) (assisted in drafting amicus curiae brief on behalf of the State of Minnesota).

  • Real Estate Equity Strategies v. Jones, 720 N.W.2d 352 (Minn. Ct. App. 2006) (assisted in drafting amicus curiae brief on behalf of the State of Minnesota).

  • Inland Paperboard and Packaging, Inc. v. GFI America, Inc., et al. , Civ. No. 02-59, 2004 WL 1784447 (D. Minn. March 1, 2004).

  • Fogerty v. Hartford Life and Acc. Ins. Co., Civ. No. 02-655, 2003 WL 22076589 (D. Minn. Sept. 3, 2003).

  • Lyon Financial Services v. POWERNET, Inc., Civ. No. 01-1089, 2001WL 1640099 (D. Minn. Nov. 19, 2001).


Marty is married, and lives in the Minneapolis area with his wife and son. Marty is a member of the Alumni Board of Macalester College, and is a member of the Advisory Board of the Audubon Center of the Northwoods, an environmental learning center near Sandstone, Minnesota. Marty also serves as a volunteer attorney for The Advocates for Human Rights, and is a member of the Volunteer Lawyers’ Network Foreclosure Defense Task Force. A member of Lake of the Isles Lutheran Church, Marty is president of the church council.

Disclaimer: The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this or associated pages should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. The information on this website is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing of this information does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Warning: The laws of Minnesota change frequently. It is important to speak with the Law Offices of Martin A. Carlson, Ltd. to get the most up-to-date information available before you take any action in your case.