Professional Liability

Professionals face risk on a daily basis, and unfortunately there are countless types of professional liability claims. For 90 years, we have vigorously and successfully defended malpractice claims for all types of professionals and their insurers. Our substantial practice includes the regular defense of lawyers; accountants; architects and engineers; insurance brokers and agents; real estate professionals; directors and officers; and, health care providers.

In addition to handling cases that revolve around traditional standard of care issues, we regularly work in more complex areas involving a particular profession’s governing statutes, codes, and practice standards. Beyond claims, we counsel and advise our clients beforehand to avoid or resolve brewing disputes, and we assist with protection when professionals are named as non‑parties and are required to produce files or provide testimony. We emphasize risk management as a means to avoid needless and expensive conflict, and our expertise is often requested by clients seeking advice on how to better draft written agreements to further their professional goals. We also regularly provide client education seminars, discussing claim prevention techniques, contract negotiation and legal trends.

Our Professional Liability attorneys are also well versed in D&O litigation. These matters range from claims against directors and officers of corporations of all sizes, from nonprofits to Fortune 500 companies, and trigger issues involving breach of fiduciary duty, securities fraud, fraud, misrepresentation, and negligence.

We routinely act as counsel for both primary and excess insurance carriers in defense of coverage, rescission, and bad faith litigation brought by policyholders. Our attorneys also work on D&O coverage advice, performing research and factual analysis on a regional and national basis.

  • We defended an attorney in a legal malpractice trial against claims of breach of contract and unjust enrichment brought by the predecessor lawyer our client had replaced in the underlying case. The jury found no contract, and the district court found no equitable basis to require our client to share the contingent fee earned. The case was tried in the District Court of Denver County, Colorado, and upheld in an unpublished decision by the Colorado Court of Appeals.
  • Our Montana attorneys defended an international civil engineering firm in a negligent highway design lawsuit in the District Court of Lake County, Montana. A pregnant woman was severely injured in a collision with a commercial truck in a temporary construction zone. The woman subsequently gave birth to a premature, brain-damaged baby, who was also injured in the accident. The woman settled with the truck driver’s employer for $1.1 million. The trucking company alleged that certain features of the construction zone were poorly designed and caused the accident. After substituting into the case mid-stream, we successfully obtained a complete defense verdict after a six-day jury trial.
  • We represented a national real estate brokerage firm in a number of professional liability lawsuits brought by homeowners with claims of negligence, negligent supervision, and fraud allegations. Broker employees had engaged in an equity-skimming scheme to defraud homeowners by using straw buyers to purchase and sell various properties. We obtained summary judgment for the firm based on agency arguments and provisions contained in the Colorado Real Estate Act. The corporate co-defendants followed our lead in filing summary judgment motions, and the remaining cases involving similar facts were resolved on favorable terms prior to trial.
  • We defended a city government in an employment lawsuit brought by 28 police officers and firefighters who alleged that the city could not reduce their compensation as part of the municipal budget process. Shortly before a scheduled three-week jury trial, the Federal District Court granted a complete summary judgment, subsequently upheld on appeal by the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.
  • We represented a national construction management firm in a design and construction liability action in the District Court of Boulder County, Colorado. A prime contractor on a public bridge project sued for negligence in failing to warn of design problems, as well as for fraud in denying payment applications. The alleged damages exceeded $1 million. We obtained summary judgment with the trial court agreeing that our client had no duty to warn of potential design problems and that the economic loss rule applied to bar the fraud claims. Our client was awarded its attorney fees and costs. On appeal, the Colorado Court of Appeals affirmed, resulting in the first opinion in the country that applied the economic loss rule to bar fraud claims.
  • AIG
  • Allied World
  • Arch
  • Argo PRO
  • Beazley Insurance Company
  • Chubb Executive Risk
  • Darwin
  • Lexington Insurance Company
  • Liberty International Underwriters
  • Markel Corp.
  • Navigators
  • Philadelphia Insurance Company
  • Preferred Physicians Medical
  • RLI
  • ALFA International
  • Defense Research Institute – DRI
  • Product Liability Advisory Council
  • Sporting Goods Manufacturing Association