Compiled by Tess Congo

/ Best Lawyers Colorado 2017

In the Headlines

► Denver Trial Lawyers: David S. Woodruff (medical malpractice law – plaintiffs, 2013) is representing the family of a boy who collapsed less than an hour after being released from the Swedish Medical Center emergency room in 2014. Isaiah Bird, 10, died the day after his collapse, on Christmas Eve. The lawsuit claims Bird was prematurely discharged without proper diagnosis. Bird’s autopsy revealed that he had the flu, pneumonia, and an upper-respiratory infection that led to his premature death.

Elizabeth Espinosa Krupa: Elizabeth Espinosa Krupa (criminal defense: white-collar, 2017) received the Colorado Hispanic Bar Association’s Chris Miranda Outstanding Award. The award is given to an exemplary Hispanic attorney who has been practicing for more than five years and has demonstrated continuous commitment to the Hispanic community and principles of the legal profession.

Holland & Hart: Timothy P. Getzoff (litigation – intellectual property, 2016) is representing Boulder restaurant The Kitchen in a suit against Wolfgang Puck’s company for trademark infringement and unfair competition. The restaurant offers farm-to-table, locally sourced cuisine and has additional establishments called The Kitchen Upstairs and The Kitchen Next Door. Puck’s company has introduced The Kitchen by Wolfgang Puck, which offers fresh, locally sourced comfort food, and The Kitchen Counter by Wolfgang Puck. Puck’s restaurant names are so similar, the suit alleges, that several newspapers have mistakenly referred to Puck’s restaurants as “The Kitchen.”

Killmer, Lane & Newman: Mari Newman (employment law – individuals; litigation – labor and employment, 2011) represents 18 plaintiffs in the case against the State of Colorado concerning warrantless, nonconsensual strip searches conducted at the Pueblo Regional Center in March 2015.

Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie: Eric V. Hall (First Amendment law, 2014) represented Douglas County School District in a court hearing where the American Humanist Association complained that the district violated the Constitution with its history of promoting Christian causes. The school district counters that students were not forced to participate in the events that led to the lawsuit, which included a mission trip (the Fellowship of Christian Athletes) and a supply drive to aid people in Guatemala.

On the Move

PRIVATE PRACTICE:

Davis Graham & Stubbs: Chad Williams (criminal defense: white-collar, 2017) has been elected co-managing partner alongside Kristin L. Lentz.

Stinson Leonard Street: Deborah L. Bayles (real estate law, 2016), who has been with Stinson Leonard Street since 2013, has been named managing partner of the firm’s Denver office.

ITN Feature

Qusair Mohamedbhai Wins $200,000 Discrimination and Retaliation Settlement

Bells of justice are ringing for five former employees of a wedding and special events planning business after Qusair Mohamedbhai (employment law – individuals, 2016) helped win them a $200,000 settlement.

The lawsuit, brought against Wright Group Events Services of Denver, states that the plaintiffs living in the country illegally worked up to 100 hours per week without being compensated for overtime and were clocked out before the end of their shifts. While the four Mexican plaintiffs and one Guatemalan were allegedly not paid minimum wage, Caucasian employees were paid justly for all worked hours. The plaintiffs were yelled and cursed at, insulted, had objects throw at them, and didn’t receive breaks during their physically demanding 18-hour shifts. Medical bills received due to injuries sustained on the job because of dangerous working conditions were also not covered.

Per the settlement agreement, Wright Group Events Services of Denver did not admit to any wrongdoing and denied allegations in response to the original complaint.

As reported by The Denver Post, Attorney Arash Jahanian, who worked with Mohamedbhai and Laura Wolf on the case, discussed the frequent maltreatment of those working illegally in Colorado. “We get calls like this all the time. A lot of workers don’t know their rights, and they are afraid to come forward.”

The five plaintiffs—Maria Del Carmen Contreras, Joaquin Espinoza Bailon, Alfonso Madera, Gerardo Castaneda Cisneros, and Rosa Botello Hernandez—will receive $118,500 of the settlement amount while attorneys Mohamedbhai, Jahanian, and Wolf will receive the remaining $81,500.