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Main:(612) 604-6400 | Fax:(612) 604-6800 |  A Professional Association


Understands the client's business

Client focused

Courtroom prowess

Helps advise on business issues


I love to dive head-first into conflict and figure out how to resolve it for my client. I will help you get where you need to be and prevent problems along the way. If litigation is necessary, I’m your pitbull; I will tirelessly and endlessly go to the mat and work to make sure we end up on the top of the pile.
—David A. Davenport
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David A. Davenport

p (612) 604-6716   f (612) 604-6816 
The University of Tulsa College of Law, J.D., with honors, 1998
College of Charleston, B.S., Psychology; B.A., Political Science, with honors, 1992
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David Davenport is a trial lawyer with a wide range of knowledge and experience who provides accurate, clear, practical and timely advice to all of his clients. David’s clients seek his counsel and advice on a variety of issues they face in running their businesses, and they find him to be an effective and creative problem solver. He is a fierce litigator who fights to get his clients the outcomes they deserve and seek, and he actively explores potential solutions and strategies with clients before litigation begins. He also works to minimize the number of legal issues his clients must deal with so they can focus on their businesses.

A significant amount of David’s practice concerns disputes in the low-income housing tax credit industry where David represents developers and partners in disputes involving business partnerships in the affordable housing market, and he has a particular expertise in litigating partnership exit disputes. He frequently advises clients on their options and rights available to avoid litigation, but with the increasing number of “exit issues” and “year 15 disputes” facing the industry a significant part of David’s practice involves litigation in this complex area. Throughout his career, he has frequently represented business owners in partnership disputes and David brings a seasoned approach to dealing with these complicated partnership structures and business disputes in the tax credit industry. Recently, David was a panelist at the 2016 Affordable Housing Summit in Minneapolis and spoke on exist disputes. The depth and diversity of David’s litigation practice also includes land use, real estate and construction litigation; software, licensing and contract litigation; intellectual property litigation, including copyrights, trademarks and patents; and non-competition/non-solicitation and trade secret litigation.

David also represents clients in a variety of industries, including real estate and construction, software and employee staffing, finance, numismatics, emerging technologies, manufacturing and sales representation, and probate, among others. He is known and appreciated by his clients for his common sense and practical approach to complicated legal matters. David’s clients commend him for being a problem solver who is easy to work with yet simultaneously tough and aggressive on their behalf.

He is a member of a number of law and industry associations, including the National Housing & Rehabilitation Association, the National Council of State Housing Agencies, Affordable Housing Finance, and the American and Minnesota State Bar Associations, and he has been recognized by the legal community through a handful of awards. Most recently, David was named to the 2017 Best Lawyers in America© list for Commercial Litigation. From 2016-217 Benchmark Litigation has named him a “Local Litigation Star", and he was named “Attorney of the Year” by Minnesota Lawyer in 2013. He has been recognized by Minnesota Super Lawyers since 2014. Prior to joining Winthrop & Weinstine, David was a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Renee L. Worke of the Waseca County District Court, located in southern Minnesota. David lives in Minneapolis with his wife and four children and he enjoys snowboarding, hunting, biking and other outdoor activities with his family, friends and clients, and he volunteers in his children’s schools.  

David is a member of Winthrop & Weinstine’s Compensation Committee, Associate Development Committee, and Associate Review Committee, and he previously served as the chairman of the firm’s Associate Development Committee and Summer Associate Program.  

Bar Admissions
Minnesota, 1998
U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit

Representative Matters

Real Estate
  • Representation of Cottages of Stewartville and Stewartville Development Corporation, a local partnership and affordable housing developer, in a “year 15 exit dispute” involving an affordable housing project.  The dispute arose after the investor limited partner fully exhausted the tax credits available to the partnership and sought to exit the partnership with a forced sale of the project by unreasonably withholding consent to allow the general partner to refinance project debt.  David successfully obtained an injunction and court order that allowed his clients to refinance the project debt without the investor limited partner’s consent and prohibited the investor limited partner from involuntarily removing his client from the partnership.  Following the injunction, the case proceeded to a trial more than a year later—in November, 2016.  In December, 2016, the Court ruled in favor of David’s clients and confirmed that the investor limited partner had unreasonably withheld consent to refinance.
  • Representation of Pelican Rapids Leased Housing Associates I, L.P., a local partnership and affiliate of a large, national affordable housing developer, in a “year 15 exit dispute” involving an investor limited partner’s refusal to consent to a refinance of project debt.  The refinance was needed to avoid the Partnership’s default on its long-term debt financing obligations that were scheduled to mature, but the investor limited partner was refusing consent for the refinance and demanding to be paid the return of its invested amount in exchange for exiting the partnership to nullify the need for its consent.  David successfully obtained an injunction allowing for a short-term refinance without the investor’s consent, which was then followed approximately six months later by a summary judgment order finding that the investor limited partner had unreasonably and unlawfully withheld consent to refinance as a means to obtain rights that it otherwise did not have (i.e., a forced buy-out of its interests).
  • Representation of CommonBond Communities, a long-standing non-profit affordable housing developer in Minnesota who was looking to exercise a right of first refusal to purchase its partner’s interest in an affordable housing project for seniors at a fixed and discounted price, based on the project’s existing debt and taxes owed. CommonBond’s partner in the development project sought instead to require CommonBond to pay market value for the property, thus putting the future of the senior-based affordable housing project in jeopardy by making it too expensive to continue to operate. David demonstrated to the court that the original contract, drafted twenty years prior, had a mutual mistake in it, which lead to the court’s ultimate decision to reform the contract to allow CommonBond to buy the property at the lower cost and continue to operate the senior home.
  • Representation of St. Paul Leased Housing Associates IV, an affiliate of Dominium Development & Acquisition, in a land use dispute involving more than a dozen residents seeking to challenge and overturn a conditional use permit issued by the City of St. Paul for the development and construction of an affordable housing project approved by the St. Paul Heritage Preservation Commission.  David successfully secured summary judgment for his client, ensuring that the project could be developed and constructed as planned.
  • Representation of Pioneer-Endicott, LLC, and others, in what began as a mechanic’s lien action filed against David’s client by a construction contractor, and ended with a favorable settlement for David’s client.  Under the settlement David secured for his client, the contractor made a cash payment and was required to provide mandatory repairs and remediation work related to several design defect and warranty based claims. 
  • Representation of a large residential and commercial real estate developer in a matter involving allegations of fraud, in which David successfully secured a $6.5 million settlement on behalf of his client.

Shareholder Disputes
  • Representation of a partner in a real estate holding company with a variety of holdings and related interests in which David worked for and obtained, for his client, the appointment of a receiver to take control of and operate the holding company in a manner consistent with the best interests of the partnership rather than in the best interests of the managing partner adverse to David’s client.  
  • Representation of an American natural gas distribution company based in China in a high-profile litigation matter involving natural gas extraction technology, a process referred to as “coal gasification” or “clean coal technology.” In a result worth more than $100 million dollars, David was able to secure the transaction for his client and replace the management and board of directors for the opposing company.

Intellectual Property & Trade Secrets  
  • Representation of Candyland, Inc., in three separate trademark infringement matters relating to its CHICAGO MIX popcorn, a unique blend of traditional, caramel, and cheese flavored popcorns. All three lawsuits were resolved very favorably for Candyland, including resulting in a permanent injunction barring further use of Candyland’s trademarks by Snyder’s-Lance Inc., CaramelCrisp, LLC (also known as Garrett Popcorn Shops) and Cornfields, Inc., which makes G.H. Cretors popcorn for retailers such as Costco, Whole Foods and Hy-Vee.  The cases received wide-attention by local news outlines, including a syndicated story by CBS News Minneapolis and another story by Fox9 News.
  • Representation of MJ Solutions GmbH, a patent owner who had licensed its patents to Arkwright Advanced Coatings, Inc., in an arbitration commenced by Arkwright seeking a judicial declaration that it was no longer required to make royalty payments under the license agreement and had been justified in its prior withholding of payments to MJ Solutions.  After a week-long arbitration hearing, David successfully demonstrated that Arkwright was in breach of the license agreement and MJ Solutions was permitted to terminate the license agreement.  The arbitrator agreed with David’s client’s case, rejected the relief Arkwright sought, awarded MJ Solutions over $500,000 in past due royalties and other damages, and permanently enjoined Arkwright from continuing to practice the patented technology.  David successfully secured confirmation of the award in the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota and Arkwright is no longer manufacturing or selling the competing technology.     
  • Representation of Asset Marketing Services, Inc. and New York Mint, leaders in the numismatics industry with over 500 employees nationally, in matters involving theft of customer lists, customer information and other valuable trade secrets in which David has successfully obtained temporary and permanent injunctive relief, among other remedies, against former employees and companies engaged in unfair competition and misappropriation of trade secrets.

Case Studies

Sweet Victory for Local Candyland Inc.

Candyland, Inc., founded in 1936, is a small, Minnesota-based manufacturer of high-quality popcorn, candy, and fine chocolates. The candy company’s trademarked “Chicago Mix” blend of caramel, cheese and regular flavored popcorn has been a best seller for 20 more.

Critical Coal Gasification Project Gets Off the Ground
In a case critical to the Chinese government, David represented Global Partners United (GPU). GPU, an American company principally based in the People’s Republic of China, was working closely with Chinese government officials to deliver natural gas throughout more.
Community Involvement
  • American Bar Association
  • American Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Federal Bar Association
  • Minnesota State Bar Association
  • Intellectual Property and Labor and Employment Law Sections
  • Minnesota Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Hennepin County Bar Association
  • Minneapolis Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership program
  • Burnsville, MN, Chapter of Ducks Unlimited
  • Volunteer Lawyers Network
  • Volunteer Winthrop & Weinstine mentor, young lawyer program
  • Volunteer reader at Gleason Lake Elementary School
  • Volunteer Wayzata Community Church (Sunday School teacher)
  • Coaches son’s baseball team and volunteers at all three of his children’s schools and events

Honors & Awards
  • The Best Lawyers in America©
    • Commercial Litigation, 2017
  • "Local Litigation Star," Benchmark Litigation, 2016-2017
  • Minnesota Super Lawyers®, 2014-2016
  • Attorney of the Year, Minnesota Lawyer, 2013
  • "Future Star," Benchmark Litigation, 2015
  • Minnesota Rising Stars®, 2003-2009, 2011
  • AV Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell
In the Media

Press Releases
Articles & Presentations
Author. "Beware the Aggregator: Avoiding Bad Investor Exits." Tax Credit Advisor. National Housing & Rehabilitation Association. April 2017.

Panelist. "Working Out Partner Issues in LIHTC Deals: Changing GP and LPs." 2016 Affordable Housing Summit. 19 May 2016.
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