MN Government Data Practices Act

Minnesota case law summary by Attorney Richard Clem: government data practices act.

Todd Schwanke v. Minnesota Department of Administration. MN government data practices act

The Minnesota Supreme Court held:

  1. A local government employee's performance evaluation contains "government data," as defined by the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act, Minn. Stat. chapter 13. Therefore, the employee could challenge his performance evaluation for "accuracy or completeness" under Minn. Stat. 13.04.
  2. Although the employee could not raise new challenges to his performance evaluation in an administrative appeal to the Department of Administration, he could introduce new evidence that he had not previously presented to his government employer.
  3. The Department of Administration lacked authority to dismiss the employee's challenges without first having resolved them informally or conducted a contested-case proceeding.

No. A12-2062 (Minn. Aug. 4, 2104)

Please see the original opinion for the court's exact language.


Richard P. Clem is an attorney and continuing legal education (CLE) provider in Minnesota. He has been in private practice in the Twin Cities for 25 years. He has a J.D., cum laude, from Hamline University School of Law in St. Paul and a B.A. in History from the University of Minnesota. His reported cases include: Asociacion Nacional de Pescadores a Pequena Escala o Artesanales de Colombia v. Dow Quimica de Colombia, 988 F.2d 559, rehearing denied, 5 F.3d 530 (5th Cir. 1993), cert. denied, 510 U.S. 1041 (1994); LaMott v. Apple Valley Health Care Center, 465 N.W.2d 585 (Minn. Ct. App. 1991); Abo el Ela v. State, 468 N.W.2d 580 (Minn. Ct. App. 1991).

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