BACKGROUND The benefit of adjuvant chemotherapy occurs with early initiation, but is commonly delayed due to postoperative complications. Minimally invasive surgery is proven to significantly reduce complications and hospital length of stay. This study compares open versus laparoscopic liver resection in patients requiring adjuvant chemotherapy. METHODS 120 consecutive patients with metastatic colorectal liver cancer who underwent liver resection between 2007 through 2012 were reviewed from an IRB prospective database. RESULTS 44 laparoscopic cases were compared to 76 open cases having equivalent resections. Laparoscopic liver resection patients had lower blood loss (276 ml) than patients with open resection (614 ml). Patients with laparoscopy had shorter length of hospital stay (5 days) than patients with open resection (9 days). Patients with laparoscopic resection had a shorter time of chemotherapy initiation postoperatively (24 days v 39 days). Overall complication rates were higher, but statistically insignificant in patients with open resection. CONCLUSIONS Our data showed that the shorter LOS with laparoscopic major hepatectomies allows earlier initiation of chemotherapy compared to the open group, without jeopardizing surgical margins or extent of resection. SUMMARY Over the past decade multiple authors have established that, despite occasional longer operating times, laparoscopic liver surgery is associated with reduced blood loss, reduced postoperative morbidity and shorter hospital stay. The purpose of this analysis was to determine if the advantages of a minimally invasive approach correspond to shorter initiation of adjuvant chemotherapy versus an open approach.