Minnesota Service Dog Laws

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Definitions

Under cruelty chapter that deals with harm to service animal:

“Service animal” means an animal trained to assist a person with a disability.

S. A. § 343.20

Accommodation Law

Housing:

It is an unfair discriminatory practice for a person to deny full and equal access to real property to a person who is totally or partially blind, deaf, or has a physical or sensory disability and who uses a service animal, if the service animal can be properly identified as being from a recognized program which trains service animals to aid persons who are totally or partially blind or deaf or have physical or sensory disabilities.

S. A. § 363A.09

Every totally or partially blind, physically disabled, or deaf person who has a service dog, or who obtains a service dog, shall be entitled to full and equal access to all housing accommodations and shall not be required to pay extra compensation for such service dog but shall be liable for any damage done to the premises by such service dog.

S. A. § 256C.025

Places of public accommodation/equal access:

It is an unfair discriminatory practice for an owner, operator, or manager of a hotel, restaurant, public conveyance, or other public place to prohibit a blind or deaf person or a person with a physical or sensory disability from taking a service animal into the public place or conveyance to aid blind or deaf persons or persons with physical or sensory disabilities, and if the service animal is properly harnessed or leashed so that the blind or deaf person or a person with a physical or sensory disability may maintain control of the service animal.

S. A. § 363A.19

Every totally or partially blind, physically disabled, or deaf person or any person training a dog to be a service dog shall have the right to be accompanied by a service dog. The service dog must be capable of being properly identified as from a recognized school for seeing eye, hearing ear, service, or guide dogs.

S. A. § 256C.02

Harassment of/Interference with Service Dogs

No person shallintentionally and without justification do either of the following to a service animal while it is providing service or while it is in the custody of the person it serves:

  1. cause bodily harm to the animal; or
  2. otherwise render the animal unable to perform its duties.

Penalty:

  • where the violation renders the service animal unable to perform its duties is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
  • where the violation results in substantial bodily harm to a service animal may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than two years or to payment of a fine of not more than $5,000, or both.

Mandatory restitution including the service animal user’s loss of income, veterinary expenses, transportation costs, and other expenses of temporary replacement assistance services, and service animal replacement or retraining costs incurred by a school, agency, or individual.

S. A. § 343.21

Driving Law

Any person operating a motor vehicle shall bring such motor vehicle to a stop and give the right-of-way to a blind pedestrian using a guide dog.

S. A. § 169.202