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Brian is an employment and labor law counselor, negotiator, litigator, and strategist who focuses his practice on management-side representation.

 Brian is an experienced advisor and litigator who represents and defends businesses.  He provides advice on matters ranging from employee discipline, terminations, corporate restructuring and reductions-in-force, policy/procedure/process development, and general employment and labor law compliance.  He has tried multiple jury, bench and arbitration matters to verdict or decision and is a skilled advocate in the courtroom.   Brian also helps businesses navigate disputes and labor relations issues in the unionized setting.

Brian represents clients as outside General Counsel.  He drafts and negotiates commercial contracts, provides advice on general business matters, legal disputes, litigation, and guides his clients through compliance issues and related strategy.

When counseling his clients, Brian draws upon his experience as a health care manager.   Prior to entering the practice of law, he served in a variety of management and executive-level positions for a health care company that operated facilities in the Twin Cities metropolitan area.   Brian regularly taps into his real word experience when litigating cases, resolving labor disputes, and solving complicated legal issues.

Brian is tenacious.  He works tirelessly for his clients to meet their needs, and prides himself in being their go-to problem solver.

Practice Areas

  • Brian advises his clients on a variety of employee-related issues including:  discipline and termination; performance management; reorganizations and reductions in force; drafting and negotiating employee agreements, separation agreements, restrictive covenants; compliance and related strategy;  wage and hour matters; risk management; and in relation to government investigations and audits.
  • Brian negotiates union contracts; resolves employee grievances; develops and executes strike contingency plans; and arbitrates union grievances.
  • Brian actively and successfully litigates employment-related matters with state and federal agencies and in the trial and appellate court systems.   His results-driven approach leads to favorable client outcomes, risk mitigation, and outright wins.


Brian T. Benkstein

Rated by Super Lawyers

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Professional Certifications, Awards and Designations

  • Certified Labor and Employment Specialist in Minnesota by the MSBA
  • Best Lawyers in America©, Employment Law – Management, 2019 – Present
  • Minnesota Super Lawyer®, Employment Litigation Defense, 2016 – Present
  • Super Lawyers® Rising Star, Employment Litigation Defense, 2007-2012

Bar Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 7th Circuit, 2017
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 8th Circuit, 2006
  • U.S. District Court, Minnesota, 2003
  • Minnesota, 2003

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Minnesota State Bar Association


  • William Mitchell College of Law, J.D. 2002 magna cum laude
  • University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire, B.S., 1994, magna cum laude


Brian is a regular lecturer at various seminars, including more than a decade of presenting at the Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute, Minnesota CLE.

  • Past President, Chanhassen Athletic Association


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