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Legal Memorandum: Defenses for Defeating the Claims of a Lender

Issue: Under Minnesota law, what defenses may an alleged guarantor raise to defeat the claims of a lender?

Area of Law: Banking & Finance Law, Bankruptcy & Creditors Rights, Business Organizations & Contracts
Keywords: Affirmative defenses; Defeat the lender's claim
Jurisdiction: Minnesota
Cited Cases: None
Cited Statutes: Minn. R. Civ. P. 8(a)
Date: 09/01/2009

An alleged debtor, including one who allegedly provided a personal guaranty to the lender, may have a substantial arsenal of affirmative defenses available that, if established, will defeat the lender’s claim on the note or guaranty. Among the most prominent are:


·         absence of assent;

·         accord and satisfaction;

·         breach by lender;

·         discharge in bankruptcy;

·         duress;

·         estoppel;

·         failure of consideration;

·         fraud in the inducement;

·         illegality;

·         impossibility;

·         mistake;

·         payment;

·         rescission or modification of contract;

·         release;

·         res judicata;

·         statute of frauds;

·         statute of limitations;

·         unconscionability;

·         undue influence; and

·         waiver.


See e.g. Minn. R. Civ. P. 8(a); 17 C.J.S. Contracts §§ 133, 147, 158, […]

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