Brett Godfrey has 30 years of trial experience, and an extensive medical, scientific and aerospace background. He is rated AV by Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System (the highest attorney rating available). He was first listed by Denver’s 5280 Magazine as a Top Colorado Super Lawyer in 2006 and remains so today. Mr. Godfrey has served as lead counsel in more than 90 jury trials throughout the United States. His diverse trial experience includes complex commercial claims, product liability, insurance bad faith, medical malpractice, lender liability, fires and explosions, computer liability, class-actions, civil rights, employment discrimination and employment contract disputes, premises liability, criminal defense and automobile cases in state and federal courts. He also has substantial experience in FINRA securities arbitrations and SEC administrative matters.
He has served as lead appellate counsel in a large number of cases, establishing new law in State and Federal court.
He has handled litigation in England, Scotland, South Africa, China, the Seychelles Islands, Canada and Mexico, including supervision of local counsel in those countries and coordination of high-stakes multi-national litigation. Before becoming an attorney, Mr. Godfrey served as the Senior On-Site Chemical Engineer for a subsidiary of the Williams Companies, designing the entire control system for an advanced chemical processing facility in Wyoming, pioneering the successful use of new technologies employing sophisticated ceramic and titanium flow components and automated control technologies, designing new hardware components and writing the software to control most of the plant. In the context of his work as both an attorney and an engineer, Mr. Godfrey is experienced in design and development of preventive measures relating to product liability and plant safety. He has designed protective devices and warning labels, written instruction manuals for experimental new equipment, written safety procedures and performed human factors analysis of human error. Mr. Godfrey’s engineering litigation background has also enabled him to produce impressive results in large-scale construction defect litigation involving residential, commercial and steel building construction.
Brett has litigated a large number of high-stakes business disputes involving licensing rights, intellectual property claims, royalty disputes, unfair trade practices, price discrimination claims, accounting disputes, sales contract disputes, franchise agreement disputes and other corporate litigation, including civil RICO (Racketeering) and multi-district litigation.
Mr. Godfrey is a former Air Force officer, with substantial experience in aviation law. He is also a pilot with multiengine and instrument ratings. His most recent aviation experience includes acting as Pilot In Command of the firm’s Cessna 421C Golden Eagle, in which he logged over 600 hours in all-weather IFR operations. Brett has flown 4 different kinds of jets and turboprops and more than a dozen types of piston airplanes, as well as two different types of helicopters. Brett has litigated glider crash cases, helicopter crashes, plane crash cases and he has been involved in both civilian and military air crash investigations. He has successfully and safely handled serious in-flight emergencies, including engine failures, without damage to persons or property.
Mr. Godfrey’s far-ranging legal experience includes:
- Successfully defended patent infringement jury trial in U.S. District Court involving subatomic physics.Successfully defended multi-fatality air crash case involving loss of aircraft control during aborted landing procedure.
- Successfully defended stock fraud claim brought against high technology instrumentation company by former CEO.Successfully defended loss of vision claim tried to jury following head injury in apartment community.
- Successfully defended the largest FDCPA class action ever tried to a jury (USDC for Northern Dist. of California), and thereafter successfully argued before the 9th Circuit US Court of Appeals for the disqualification of class action counsel.
- Obtained $3.1 million jury verdict for client in commercial contract dispute related to the sale of dental practice.Developed and presented the most scientifically sophisticated helmet product liability defense ever presented in federal court, integrating expert testimony from 7 separate scientific fields and cutting-edge computer animations and laboratory re-enactments.
- Obtained $14.8 million recovery for Larimer County, Colorado, in an engineering-defect suit against contractors in connection with engineering defects in several arena-size steel buildings at the Larimer County Event Center.
- Obtained nearly $10 million for corporate clients in relation to computer software and hardware liability.Secured contested licensing rights for a client in a dispute related to Asian distribution of major database engine, including the successful representation of a corporate founder in federal court with related proceedings pending in Chinese courts.
- Obtained several million dollars in compensation for homeowners in residential construction defect suits.Obtained $5.5 million recovery for owner of single-family dwelling in combined construction defect and bad faith case.
- Litigated several civil RICO claims with uniform success for both plaintiffs and defendants in U.S. District court.Defended class actions involving construction defect and product liability allegations, with complex engineering issues.Successfully defended hospitals and public entities in multiple ADEA claims federal district and appellate courts.
- Created new law in the context of his uniformly successful defense of ski areas and chair lift manufacturers.Obtained defense verdict for legal malpractice clients despite prior finding by Wyoming Supreme Court in earlier criminal proceeding that the attorney defendants had provided “ineffective assistance of counsel.”
- Was the first attorney in the world to successfully enforce an American Subpoena on South African soil pursuant to the Hague Convention and related international laws.
- Defended many medical device cases involving “state-of-the art” and “learned intermediary” defenses, related to complex technologies.Obtained record-setting compensatory damage award in civil auto case in northeastern Colorado state court.
- Successfully managed multinational litigation as lead counsel in 5 countries simultaneously in which claims of more than $40 million were asserted.
- Litigated airplane and helicopter crash cases.
Mr. Godfrey’s experience also includes extensive involvement in corporate crisis management. These services include legal and business and management advice to corporate chief executives in the midst of public turmoil, corporate acquisitions and takeovers, employment disputes, public offerings, and media campaigns, risk management analysis, media relations, restructuring and compliance disputes. Mr. Godfrey has advised corporations and executives in the aftermath of fatal accidents, catastrophic press events, massive layoffs and reductions in force, securities arbitrations and public scandals involving senior corporate officials. Mr. Godfrey has also assisted with the development of risk management structures and underwriting of specialty insurance, including providing unique risk assessments to some of the largest insurers in the world in the context of evaluating risk appetite for specialty and manuscript insurance coverages.
Mr. Godfrey has authored numerous published articles in various legal textbooks and periodicals, including the Colorado Lawyer, Trial Talk, Inside The Minds, Flying Magazine, Colorado Law We