Representative Cases

Lead trial and/or appellate counsel in the following precedent-setting cases:

Russell v. First American Mortgage Co., 565 P.2d 972 (Colo. App. 1997). The decision enforced a lender’s oral commitment to make a loan; proved damages award based upon the interest differential.

Coale v. Dow Chemical Co., 701 P.2d 885 (Colo. App. 1985). Affirmed million dollar verdict against chemical company for product-caused sterilization of prize bull. Case became subject for L.A. Law television show.

Warner v. Baker, 693 P.2d 385 (Colo. App. 1984). Held that acceptance of rent by landlord was a waiver of lease provision prohibiting assignment without landlord consent.

First Financial, et al. v. Family Plumbing, Inc., et al., Adams County District Court, Case No. 09CV618. Wolf Slatkin & Madison attorneys were successful in resisting the six-figure drywall subcontractor’s mechanic’s lien claim, having it forfeited for being excessive and being inferior to the project lender’s deed of trust. The firm’s client was additionally awarded nearly $100,000 in attorney fees against the subcontractor.

Representing a Denver International Airport contractor, Wolf Slatkin & Madison was successful in recovering over $200,000 on a differing site conditions claim that also included loss of productivity damages.

Wolf Slatkin & Madison attorneys were successful on state administrative appeal in having a non-profit organization exempted from state and local real estate taxes.

Firm attorneys have represented a number of home builders in the preparation of standardized documentation, including purchase-and-sale agreements and in addressing their contract, liability, insurance and warranty matters.

Wolf Slatkin & Madison transaction attorneys have represented sellers, purchasers and lenders in numerous real estate and business transactions involving properties and businesses throughout the state. They have also addressed business organizational issues, shareholder, member and manager issues and other client concerns.

In representing construction industry members, firm attorneys have participated in negotiating and drafting contracts, subcontracts, design professionals’ fee agreements and providing legal advice and consultation on design and construction issues. They have also engaged in the litigation of construction defects, delay and other construction issues.

Firm attorneys have designed and created homeowner associations and association governance documents.

A number of precedent-setting appellate cased argued by Wolf, Slatkin & Madison attorneys include:

Columbine Valley Construction Company v Board of Directors, Roaring Fork School District No. RE-1J, 626 P.2d 686 (Colo. 1981). This case sanctioned the use of institutionally managed arbitration proceedings (American Arbitration Association) and held that judgment on an arbitration award entered ex parte was valid.

Riva Ridge Apartments v. Robert G. Fisher Company, 745 P.2d 1034 (Colo. App. 1987) (certiorari denied). $4.7 Million judgment recovered in suit for owner claims for delay damages and completion costs against construction manager that had been terminated by the owner. The appeals court also ruled that punitive damages for bad faith breach are awardable against the construction performance bond surety. Case ultimately settled for $11 Million.

In re Marriage of Newman, 616 P.2d 982 (Colo. 1980), aff’d in part, 653 P.2d 728 (Colo. 1982). Upheld and settled the enforceability of pre-nuptial agreements in Colorado, tacitly reversing an earlier decision of the Colorado Supreme Court that had ruled otherwise.

Carraher v. Felix, 534 P.2d 323 (Colo. App. 1975). Ruled that the presumption of payment of a negotiable instrument arising from possession of the instrument by its maker was overcome by evidence that the maker had access to the papers and personal effects of the payee following his death.

Taylor v. Barnhill, 470 P.2d 902 (Colo. App. 1970). Appellate court ruling that trial court erred in directing a verdict in a suit for attorneys’ fees because the issue of reasonableness of the attorney-client fee agreement entered into after the inception of the attorney-client relationship was a question of fact for the factfinder (jury) to determine.

United States v. Sarkisian, 231 F.Supp. 489 (D.Colo. 1964); 472 F.2d 468 (10th Cir. 1973) (cert. den.). Successful appellate court ruling that due process of law was violated in the government’s having failed to commence customs forfeiture proceedings within a reasonable time after seizing an importer’s shipment.

People v. Rogers, 161 Colo. 317, 422 P.2d 377 (1966). Colorado Supreme Court held that to sustain a perjury conviction the prosecution was required to establish that the affiant, with hand uplifted, swore by the ever-living God (or affirmed) to the truth of his statements. Failing that specific proof, the conviction was reversed.

Watt, Tieder, Killian & Hoffar v. United States Fidelity & Guaranty Co., 847 P.2d 170 (Colo. App. 1992). Court of Appeals ruling that partner lawyers in partnership law firm were not in contempt for filing pro se interpleader lawsuit.

Tomeo v. People, 158 Colo. 26, 404 P.2d 26 (1965). Colorado Supreme Court held that witnesses subpoenaed to testify before a grand jury could not be held in contempt unless (1) the trial court determined that their answers to the questions asked would not violate their privileges against self-incrimination, and (2) the court directly ordered the witnesses to answer.

Taylor Ranch Litigation. Over 30-year engagement in multiple state and federal court trial and appellate cases involving claims of purported heirs and successors to original settlers on Mexican land grant property in south central Colorado. The cases have ranged from property issues (conveyances, prescription, profits a prendre, incorporeal hereditaments, etc.) to defamation.

Lobato v. Taylor. The most recent decision is reported at 70 P.3d 1152 (Colo. 2003). Stay tuned for further actions in this decades-long case.

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