FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQS)
Lawsuits, Legal Claims, Subpoenas
What is a subpoena?
A subpoena is a legal document that may be issued in a criminal, civil, or administrative proceeding. A subpoena may be served in order to require an individual to give testimony at a deposition, hearing or trial, or to produce documents or other tangible things for inspection and/or copying by another party. A subpoena must meet several specific requirements before it is legally enforceable. Before responding, an attorney from the Office of the General Counsel will review the subpoena to determine whether it is legally enforceable and, if not, take the necessary steps to so inform the parties and the court.
What should I do with the subpoena?
If someone appears with a subpoena and attempts to serve you with it in connection with your work at the University:
- Decline to accept service, and direct the person to: Office of the General Counsel at 360 McNamara Alumni Center, 200 Oak Street SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455-2006
- If they insist, let them hand it to you, then call our office immediately (612-624-4100) and ask to speak with an attorney.
If you receive a subpoena via U.S. regular or certified mail:
- Note the date and time of receipt on the envelope and keep the envelope and certified mail receipt.
- Personally deliver all of the documents over to the Office of the General Counsel as soon as possible. Prompt action on your part is required because usually only a short time frame exists for filing a response to a newly filed lawsuit.
- Keep the contents of the subpoena confidential because it may require information about a specific individual.
In any case you should contact the Office of the General Counsel if you receive something that resembles a subpoena. It is important to let an attorney review the subpoena or court order to determine the University's rights and responsibilities for compliance. Do not ignore a subpoena, even if it addresses something you are unfamiliar with or asks for documents you do not have. Failure to respond to a subpoena could result in you or the University being held in contempt of court. If you have any questions, please contact the Office of the General Counsel at 612-624-4100, Fax: 612-626-9624.
What if I receive a legal notice such as a subpoena, summons, or search warrant?
If you are served with or given a summons and complaint, a subpoena, or other legal notice that relates to your University job or to University business, immediately fax the document you received, together with a request for assistance, to the Office of the General Counsel at 612-626-9624.
To whom do I serve legal papers at the University if I want to initiate a lawsuit?
Only the Corporate Secretary for the Board of Regents and the University General Counsel are authorized to accept service of a summons and complaint against the University. These individuals' offices are located, respectively, at 600 McNamara Alumni Center and 360 McNamara Alumni Center, 200 Oak Street SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455.
I need a notarized signature. What is it and can you help?
A notary public is someone authorized by the State of Minnesota to verify the authenticity of a signature. Be sure to wait to sign the document until the notary can actually witness you signing it. Our most recent information is that the following locations have notary services, sometimes for a small fee:
East Bank, Minneapolis
Coffman Memorial Union
Hennepin County Service Center
300 Washington Ave. SE
West Bank, Minneapolis
University Student Legal Service
160 West Bank Skyway
Does the University have liability insurance? What does it cover?
The Office of Risk Management & Insurance can answer questions regarding liability insurance coverage for personal injuries and property loss or damage which occurs on University property or during University activities. The phone number is 612-625-0062.