Stacey L. Drentlaw

Ms. Drentlaw, an attorney with Leonard, O’Brien, Spencer, Gale & Sayre, focuses her practice on protecting the subrogation interests of Health and Welfare Funds, complex commercial litigation, product liability and railroad litigation, and regulatory compliance counseling. 

She has represented Health and Welfare Funds, correspondent lenders and banks, railroads, rail equipment manufacturers and owners, and pharmaceutical companies in numerous state and federal courts throughout the United States. Prior to joining Leonard O’Brien, Ms. Drentlaw was a partner with the Minneapolis firm of Oppenheimer Wolff & Donnelly, LLP. She also clerked for the Honorable John D. Kelly with the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals after graduating from law school. 

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    • Represents clients in Health and Welfare Funds in intervention and subrogation matters.
    • Defending correspondent lenders in lawsuits brought by liquidating trust of bankrupt securitizer alleging breach of contract and indemnification based on purported defects in mortgage loans.
    • Assists clients following catastrophic events such as train derailments, including government investigations, evidence preservation, expert retention, pre-litigation counseling, and trial.
    • Provides regulatory counseling related to FRA and PHMSA regulations regarding various rail issues, including but not limited to hazardous materials transportation, rail car and locomotive design, rail car and locomotive maintenance and inspection, employee training, and crossing protection.
    • Actively involved in emerging issues related to the transportation of petroleum crude oil by rail and recent derailments, including litigation and regulatory developments. 
    • Performs risk assessments related to new products and product modifications. 
    • Represented numerous railroads and rail equipment owners and manufacturers in contract disputes, crossing and FELA cases, FRA matters.
    • Represented tank car owner in litigation involving a train derailment and chlorine release. Established that all claims against tank car owner were preempted because tank car at issue fully complied with all applicable regulations, and obtained voluntary dismissal of all claims against tank car owner.
    • Represented rail car owner in litigation involving a third party’s fall from the top of the rail car. Obtained dismissal of all claims against the rail car owner based on federal preemption.  See Feldman v.CSX et al, 31 A.D.3d 698, 821 N.Y.S.2d 85(2006).
    • Represented locomotive manufacturer in litigation involving a train derailment and diesel fuel fire. Drafted brief that resulted in preemption-based dismissal of locomotive manufacturer.
    • Represented railroad in litigation involving a train derailment, ethanol release, and fire. Obtained favorable settlements to most lawsuits with minimal or no litigation. One of two remaining lawsuits was favorably settled one week prior to trial, and the final lawsuit was favorably settled just prior to receiving the jury’s verdict following a five week jury trial.
    • State of Minnesota
    • State of Wisconsin
    • State of Montana
    • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh and Eighth Circuits 
    • U.S. District Courts for Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Montana
    • University of Minnesota, Juris Doctorate, Magna Cum Laude, Order of the Coif
    • University of Minnesota, Bachelor of Arts
    • OSHA vs. FRA: Who’s on First?
    • In re Seroquel: A Reminder to Use Care When Showing Documents to Witnesses During Deposition Preparation Sessions
    • Seeing is Believing: Utilizing Computer Animation at Trial 
    • Lessons Learned from a 5 Week Derailment Trial 
    • Preemption: It’s Not Just for Grade Crossings Anymore
    • Working with the NTSB
Stacey L. Drentlaw, Stacey Drentlaw

Stacey L. Drentlaw


Telephone:  (612) 332-1030

Fax:  (612) 332 2740


Primary Areas of Practice: