Commercial Litigation - Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck

When business meets law, you need a legal partner with both extensive trial experience and the resources to handle complex litigation that often crosses state and even national boundaries. With more than 65 trial lawyers in offices nationwide, Brownstein’s Commercial Litigation Group is well prepared to handle multi-party, multi-jurisdictional disputes reflecting a wide range of business problems, challenges and issues.

Whether your matter spans a large geographic area, multiple legal theories or both, you will be skillfully represented by a team with extensive experience in litigation tactics and cases at the trial and appellate levels. Our group excels at trial work and understands that all cases start with the premise that a dispute is going to trial unless, along the way, it becomes apparent that arbitration or settlement best meets your business objectives.

Together, we have significant experience in matters involving antitrust, securities, intellectual property, employment, environmental, water, land use, development, real estate, engineering and construction, telecommunications, bankruptcy, products liability and gaming, among other practice areas. When needed, our Commercial Litigation Group works in tandem with our Corporate & Business, Natural Resources, Government Relations and Real Estate groups.

Representative Matters
  • Represented company and related directors as Nevada counsel in $1.1 billion stock acquisition with certain investment funds affiliated with the private equity firm Apollo Global Management. While asserting protections under Nevada statutory business judgment rule and Nevada’s exculpation statutes, the matter was successfully resolved in a favorable settlement for our client while motions to dismiss were pending decision.

  • Brownstein represented the Directors of EchoStar Corporation, in two suits claiming that they breached their fiduciary duties and other alleged wrongdoing. This is a complex stock option dispute including a range of demanding legal issues. Our team’s outstanding technical skills and deep understanding of the law in this area have been critical to guiding the client through every stage of this litigation.

  • Represented company and related directors as Nevada counsel for publicly traded company in a $274 million merger transaction. Successfully achieved dismissal of action at pleading stage with matter currently on appeal.

  • Successfully represented advertising company in terminating multi-million dollar franchise agreement with public body.

  • Prosecuted a brokerage fee commission dispute through federal jury trial to a unanimous, multimillion dollar verdict.

  • Successfully obtained six-figure verdict in bench trial involving breach of contract, breach of duty, and violation of Colorado’s Trust Fund Statute.

  • Representing multinational, privately held company in business disputes with former distributors.

  • Obtained dismissal with prejudice of complaint by student loan borrower alleging various forms of fraud.

  • Won a major ruling in Adams County District Court on behalf of client, Colorado Oil & Gas Association (COGA) and the American Petroleum Institute (API). COGA and API jointly filed suit in October to overturn a number of oil and gas regulations adopted by the City of Thornton. Colorado District Court Judge Edward Moss ruled that many of Thornton’s regulations, including its setback regulations, were illegal and operationall preempted by state law.

  • Represented Chinese real estate company as Nevada counsel and secured victory at trial for company in shareholder appraisal action arising out of going-private transaction.

  • Successfully represented non-restricted gaming licensee on Las Vegas Strip concerning patron dispute of $2,000,0000 in markers. The claims against client were dismissed at the pleading stage.

  • Represented certain directors as Nevada counsel concerning claims surrounding the potential purchase of wireless spectrum assets valued at $2.2 billion. Facing allegations of “entire fairness” review, successfully represented the directors in a preliminary injunction hearing that allowed them to continue using their business judgment to vet the purchase.

  • Counsel to a limited partnership, its general partner, and officer of the general partner in action brought by limited partner in defense of claims for civil theft, conversion, breach of fiduciary duty, and civil conspiracy. We obtained dismissal of limited partner’s claim to remove the officer, and also prevailed on two separate occasions when limited partner sought emergency injunctive relief.

  • Successfully obtained dismissal with prejudice of consumer protection and wrongful foreclosure claims brought against law firm on the basis of res judicata and statutory immunity.

  • Successfully represented as amici the lending regulatory commission of an American Indian Tribe, the Habematolel Pomo of Upper Lake, in a lawsuit filed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, alleging that lenders regulated by the commission violated federal unfair, deceptive, and abusive acts and practices (UDAAP) prohibitions because the tribally-owned and regulated lenders did not comply with some states’ lending laws. The lenders filed a motion to dismiss. Instead of responding to the arguments raised by the lenders, the Commission, and others, the Bureau filed a notice of voluntary dismissal.

  • Achieved favorable settlement for ventilation fan manufacturer in product liability case.

  • A claim in excess of $100,000,000. Dismissed on a MSJ. Affirmed by the Nevada Supreme Court.

  • Successfully obtained a $19.5 million interest arbitration ruling for the Clark County Association of School Administrators and Professional-Technical Employees (CCASA) against the Clark County School District, the fifth largest school district in the nation. After an arbitration hearing, the arbitrator determined that the District had the ability to pay CCASA’s offer and the administrators were historically and comparatively underpaid while work requirements were increasing.

  • Pursued former employee who embezzled money from corporation and obtained a significant judgment.

  • Represented nutritional supplement company in employment lawsuit involving former high-level executive.

  • Defended and successfully resolved product liability litigation on behalf of agriculture product manufacturer.

  • Represented hospitality company in litigation suit alleging fraud and other common law claims regarding the location of the certain utility lines. Negotiated a walk-away settlement for client.

  • Successfully defended lawsuit brought against ski resort in southwest Colorado.

  • Successfully resolved dispute between publically traded company and former employee involving trade secrets and other contractual disputes.

  • Successfully moved to dismiss Colorado Consumer Protection Act (CCPA) case brought by a competitor in Colorado against two Florida companies in the automobile ancillary insurance industry and their officers and directors. The court ruled that the plaintiff failed to plead the requisite elements of a CCPA claim and failed to establish personal jurisdictions over the individual officers and directors. Notably, the court rejected plaintiff’s argument that the harm element was satisfied by merely pleading that the plaintiff was a competitor and therefore suffered injury.

  • Represented Forest City Enterprises in successful appeals (Colorado Court of Appeals and Colorado Supreme Court) regarding master developer liability in Colorado.

  • Developed and conducted a consumer protection audit for a for-profit education company specializing in technology and coding bootcamps. The audit entailed reviewing every consumer-facing aspect of the company’s business including its compliance with state and federal consumer protection laws. Following the audit, conducted multiple training sessions for all of the company’s consumer-facing employees and management.

  • Successfully defended third-party executive in deposition in connection with a property casualty suit. Successfully negotiated to keep client from being named as a party in instant or subsequent litigation.

  • Successfully represented specialized oncology treatment center in complex commercial dispute.

  • Defended satellite imagery public company in million dollar breach of contract dispute with former consultant. Resolved on highly favorable terms to client.

  • Successfully represented natural food company in threatened class action matter involving claims of a “slack-fill” violation in a pre-litigation dispute alleging that more than 10 of the company’s products had more than double the amount permitted of un-useable space.

  • Successfully defended clients in Securities Exchange Act Section 16(b) short swing profits case. All Claims dismissed by US District Court judge on motion to dismiss.

  • Successfully represented an industry leading company and its commerce chain in state wide class action alleging violation of Prop. 65.

  • Obtained summary judgment in favor of defendant loan servicer on all claims in action brought by borrower for alleged violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act in connection with serving of loans.

  • nternal investigation for public company of alleged wrongdoing reported in whistleblower complaint. Resolved inquiry under budget and within two weeks of engagement.

  • Represented major, publicly traded hospitality company in complex commercial litigation involving property management, fiduciary duties, and life-safety engineering.

  • Represented international electronics company in assessing exposure for violations of Prop. 65.

  • Represented an owner on a $12.3 million, 226 unit senior residential apartment complex project. The claims were asserted against the general contractor and architect, and included construction defect, breach of contract, and fraud claims. The matter was successfully resolved during trial resulting in a favorable settlement for our client.

  • Successfully enjoined improper award of $26.5 million enterprise class network equipment contract due to violation of public procurement laws, and ultimately resulted in client receiving contract from public body.

  • Counsel to music management company against former employee who took the company’s intellectual property and relationships.

  • Represented developer of condominium project in appeals to Colorado Court of Appeals and Colorado Supreme Court in which defaulting unit purchasers had filed lawsuits seeking the return of earnest money deposits.

  • Represented cosmetic company in successful pre-litigation settlement of threatened nationwide class action regarding misleading branding of products.

  • Represented non-restricted gaming licensee operating in downtown Las Vegas in enforcement action against patron with $500,000 in unpaid markers. Achieved judgment in excess of $500,000 for client.

  • Defended company in “Made in the USA” class action litigation.

  • Counsel to investment management client in defending state and federal class action lawsuits brought by music festival ticket purchasers and vendors seeking damages for alleged breaches of contract, unjust enrichment, and deceptive trade practices in connection with the cancellation of the event.

  • Representing one of the Republic of Argentina’s largest creditors—with judgments totaling $1.7 billion—in post-judgment discovery and enforcement proceedings in Nevada.

  • On behalf of large, privately-held oil and gas company, obtained dismissal with prejudice at motion to dismiss stage of all claims in shareholder derivative action. On appeal.

  • Represented a client in matters concerning alleged violations of consumer protection and fair debt collection laws, in additional to private contract and tort claimes.

  • Won complete summary judgment on all claims 45 days before trial in a breach of contract action regarding construction of a landfill gas-to-energy utilization plant where the plaintiff was seeking in excess of $7 million in damages.

  • Successfully resolved a class action lawsuit for defendant in which the alleged violations included violations of the California Unfair Competition Law and the Consumer Legal Remedies Act for alleged false and deceptive advertising related to the printed and online advertising of a particular personal care product.

  • Successfully resolved on an individual basis, a threatened class action against cosmetic company involving alleged false marketing materials, violations of FTC standards, representations required FDA approval and violation of the Consumer Legal Remedies Act.

  • Represented a law firm in defense of a federal class action alleging claims under the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

  • Obtained favorable settlement on behalf of the nation’s leading medical transportation company for claims under the Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisitions Policies Acts of 1970, as amended, and under Nevada law.

  • Represented municipal party in bench trial against resident in contested matter.

  • Successfully represented international company in Prop. 65 class action involving multiple beauty industry related products.

  • Represent national loan servicing company in multiple loan related matters including FDCPA, FCRA, and other potential nationwide class actions.

  • Represented client in landlord tenant dispute and complex condemnation proceeding in both state and federal proceedings.

  • Successfully resolved breach dispute for public company that operates over 1,000 retail locations.

  • Represented client in putative class action lawsuit regarding disputed foreclosure practices and alleged violations of the Colorado Consumer Protection Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, and the Colorado Antitrust Act.

  • Defended international beauty product company in state wide class action matter involving allegations that marketing representations required FDA approval and violated the Consumer Legal Remedies Act.

  • Successfully resolved a class action lawsuit for defendant in which the alleged violations included violations of the California Unfair Competition Law and the Consumer Legal Remedies Act for alleged false and deceptive advertising related to the printed and online advertising of a particular personal care product.

  • Defended national company in multiple TCPA class actions, including obtaining dismissal pre-litigation based upon affirmative showing of compliance.

  • Represented client in litigation in disputed foreclosure action, asserting claims of breach of contract, violations of the Colorado Consumer Protection Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and civil conspiracy.

  • Conducted an antitrust review for a public company.

  • Represented health plan in a seven week jury trial involving multi-party litigation seeking to hold managed care health plan liable for decisions made at the medical group and physician level.

  • First Chair trial counsel for a multiple AmLaw law firm team over a three-year period and through trial to a complete defense verdict in complex breach of contract and unjust enrichment case in Denver District Court. The case presented issues of first impression in Colorado concerning bailment theories.

  • Lead counsel representing a manufacturer in a breach of contract and warranties claims against a multi-billion dollar manufacturing corporation. Successfully removed and transferred case to foreign jurisdiction under § 1404 principles, leading to positive settlement.

  • Lead counsel for plaintiff in the power industry in complex breach of contract action involving agreements for royalty payments. Obtained favorable settlement just before trial.

  • Won complete summary judgment week before trial for a Fortune 200 refuse company on a complex breach of contract action. Won an award of fees and sanctions against plaintiffs and counsel shortly thereafter.

  • Cristo v. Health Net of Arizona, Inc. Successful defense of health insurer in eight day jury trial in which plaintiff claimed breach of contract and insurance bad faith in insurer's denial of coverage of narcotic pain medications over a six year period. The plaintiff sought compensatory and bad faith damages exceeding seven figures. Unanimous defense verdict. Court awarded health insurer $350,000 in attorneys fees.

  • Represented healthcare consultant in trade secret misappropriation case.

  • Represented property owner in a multi-week jury trial involving damage relating to the property’s natural resources.

  • Defended action taken in furtherance of the City of Long Beach's major clean air initiatives based on alleged violation of the Open Meeting Law, alleged improper delegation of police powers and alleged violations of the California Environmental Quality Act.

  • Litigated to open the Torcido Creek road as means of access to Taylor Ranch property for beneficiaries of Colorado Supreme Court decree in the landmark case of Lobato v. Taylor 70 P.3d 1152 (Colo. 2003), which confirmed rights of descendants of Mexican settlers to access to land under Spanish land grant of 1884 and confirmed in the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo ending the Mexican/American war.

  • Pursued claims on behalf of an international mining company for breach of contract relating to a coal supply agreement.

  • Represented company in binding arbitration related to finder’s fee litigation stemming from successful acquisition.

  • Represented Flintco, LLC and Flintco West, Inc. in a state level qui tam action brought regarding alleged fraud in the procurement and billing of the $60 million dollar renovation of the University of New Mexico Arena (the "Pit"). In what may be the first state level false claims act case to be tried to a jury, the team was able to get a complete defense verdict on all claims.

  • Successfully defended computer software client at trial obtaining defense verdict on all claims and obtaining verdict for client on counterclaims.

  • Defended a closely held company in a dispute with a former business partner over the sales of hundreds of assets worth in excess of $200 million, prevailing on a critical issue on summary judgment thereby reducing the claims to a fraction of their initial value.

  • Successfully and efficiently represented international personal care product company in a California Proposition 65 class action lawsuit alleging that upon application, the particular cosmetic product released a previously bound chemical, which required a Proposition 65 warning.

  • Represented assembly company in product liability, unfair business practices, negligence, breach of warranty, equitable estoppel and waiver case involving the assembly of bicycles in big box stores.

  • Successfully defended international design and engineering firm in wrongful death action related to the design of the Southern Las Vegas Beltway.

  • Advised General Dynamics Corporation regarding a range of Nevada corporate law issues relating to their tender offer to acquire Force Protection, Inc., a NASDAQ-listed Nevada corporation. Brownstein&'s Nevada litigation team represented General Dynamics in its response to over a dozen lawsuits relating to the tender offer price and process, which were brought in three Nevada counties by Force Protection stockholders. We successfully consolidated the Nevada cases and helped General Dynamics and Force Protection defeat the plaintiffs' attempt to enjoin the tender offer, which culminated in over 81% of Force Protection stockholders tendering their shares. The acquisition closed on December 19, 2011.

  • Successfully defended mutual water company board of directors and management against challenge by shareholders to water transfers implemented by the company.

  • Represented TeleTech Europe B.V. in the prosecution of a complex claim against an Indian company for improper release of funds from escrow. Brownstein successfully appealed the order. The case has since been remanded to the New York Supreme Court where it is pending.

  • Successfully defended a financial institution in multi-million dollar lender liability litigation.

  • Defended a telecom reseller against claims for theft of trade secrets.

  • Successfully prevented an injunction from being entered against Netskeye Inc., a sports and entertainment company, which would have prevented their attendance at a world-renowned trade show.

  • Represented Westlands Water District in a suit against the United States claiming $1 billion in damages for breach of a contractual obligation by the Bureau of Reclamation to provide drainage facilities and services for approximately 150,000 acres of land in California's Central Valley.

  • Successfully defended a nutritional supplement company and its officers in Colorado and New York Attorney General's Consumer Protection and Deceptive Trade Practices investigations and related civil litigation.

  • Represented Cross MediaWorks, a multi-platform media firm that manages media on a targeted and measured basis, including the historical management of television media for one of the nation's largest charities, Feed The Children. Brownstein successfully pursued to a monetary settlement in a breach of contract action against Feed The Children which arose in connection with an upheaval in senior management at the charity. In addition to achieving a settlement, the business relationship was preserved.

  • Obtained verdict after bench trial on behalf of client on claims for conversion, fraud, and civil conspiracy against defendants, as well as an award of punitive damages.

  • Successfully defended a medical malpractice insurer against charges in market conduct examination by the Colorado Division of Insurance; represented the insurer on appeal of an adverse ruling before the Colorado Court of Appeals.

  • Prevented class certification and successfully defended a large commercial client against allegations that it violated a deceptive trade practices act.

  • Represented a telecommunications company in the successful settlement of its partnership claim in excess of $30 million.

  • Representation of the University of Nevada in connection with litigation filed by the Western Athletic Conference in response to the University's efforts to move its athletic programs into the Mountain West Conference.

  • Represented a homeowner in a construction defect case, resulting in dismissal of more than $900,000 in liens and in a residential judgment in excess of $900,000, including a fee award.

  • Represented the developer of a mixed-use commercial and residential development in Denver in the negotiation and development of a suite of construction contracts for the project.

  • Resolved civil litigation regarding payment issues in favor of Bravo Underground, Inc.

  • Defended a major gaming industry cash access supplier in a $900 million antitrust litigation case brought by former executives.

  • Represented the lender of $13 million residential development. Brownstein also represented the company in a lender liability defense.

  • Won jury trial and appeal for Qwest Communications in a case alleging negligence in listing the plaintiff in books and directory assistance.

  • Won summary judgment for Qwest Communications in a case alleging negligence in the disclosure of a Boulder County safehouse and argued case on appeal.

  • Represented Qwest in an arbitration before Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services, Inc. in New York in a two week hearing involving a wholesale dispute.

  • Represented Qwest (now CenturyLink) in lawsuits against multiple Competitive Local Exchange Carriers regarding switched access services.

  • Part of litigation team that won dismissal of a Section 1 and Section 2 gas transportation antitrust case seeking more than $100 million in Federal Court in Denver.

  • Defended an investment bank in a multi-district class action litigation involving allegations of bid rigging in the municipal bond industry.

  • Represented a large coal company as the seller against a buyer for breaching a coal supply contract.

  • Avoided execution of collateral on a line of credit keeping construction equipment intact for Diamond Construction Co., Inc.

  • Assisted in the successful defense of Shuffle Master, Inc. in the alleged violation of an option agreement seeking damages in excess of $14 million.

  • Represented an artificial heart valve company in a $20 million supply contract dispute resulting in favorable mitigation of client exposure and the eventual sale of the company to a major healthcare conglomerate.

  • Represented the developer of Spire Denver, a downtown condo high-rise in a suit against the lender for abandoning the loan.

  • Settled for minimum penalties of $945K with $6,000,000 in potential penalties. Provided the legal representation and the negotiations with RWQCB.

  • Defended a hedge fund manager in parallel proceedings alleging securities fraud brought by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission and shareholders.

  • Successfully represented a mixed-use developer in its build out and partnership disputes related to a major mixed-use infill project resulting in an arbitration claim dismissal. Brownstein continues to handle ongoing business litigation involving the development.

  • Counsel to a class of temporary nurses in federal antitrust litigation against a state-wide hospital association and several individual hospitals in Arizona. The case resulted in a $24 million settlement.

  • Defended an art loss registry from a liable and tort claim related to the theft and recovery of a Norman Rockwell painting.

  • Represented an owner and developer in a three-week trial against a contractor, resulting in a favorable profit-sharing judgment.

  • Won a trial affirming the award of a contract for child support enforcement services for Policy Studies.

  • Successfully defended United Airlines in the first case to be tried under federal whistle-blower provisions.

  • Won a summary judgment while defending an antitrust action in the gaming industry.

  • Successfully defended and resolved a products liability and wrongful death claim involving a minor.

  • Represents limited partners in complex commercial dispute involving two private equity funds.

  • Successfully represented international company in Proposition 65 class action.

  • Successfully represented company and individual owner in contract and fraud dispute by securing dismissal of all claims asserted against them and securing award in an amount exceeding $300,000 in attorney fees. Also, successfully defended dismissal and award in appeal before the Supreme Court of the State of Nevada.

  • Defend companies from third party invasive subpoenas.

  • Represented national company in lawsuit stemming from the purchase of multiple multi-million dollar assets.

News & Events

Meet The Team

Adam K. Bult Shareholder T 702.464.7077
Jonathan G. Pray Shareholder T 303.223.1211
Lisa Hogan Shareholder T 303.223.1185
Eric R. Burris Shareholder T 505.724.9563
Martha L. Fitzgerald Shareholder T 303.223.1472
Mark J. Mathews Shareholder T 303.223.1179
Richard B. Benenson Managing Partner T 303.223.1203
Sarah Auchterlonie Shareholder T 303.223.1228
Tony Arias Associate T 303.223.1281
Bridget C. DuPey Associate T 303.223.1275
Emily L. Dyer Associate T 702.464.7070
Erin M. Eiselein Shareholder T 303.223.1251
Emily A. Ellis Associate T 702.464.7085
Craig M. Finger Associate T 303.223.1135
Hubert A. Farbes, Jr. Shareholder T 303.223.1186
Justin L. Cohen Shareholder T 303.223.1254
Maximilien D. Fetaz Shareholder T 702.464.7083
Matthew D. Francis Shareholder T 775.324.4100
Sean S. Cuff Associate T 303.223.1125
Travis F. Chance Associate T 702.464.7096
Troy P. Domina Associate T 702.802.2210
Allison L. Gambill Of Counsel T 303.223.1175
Alissa H. Gardenswartz Shareholder T 303.223.1207
Amanda K. Houseal Associate T 303.223.1247
Carrie E. Johnson Shareholder T 303.223.1198
Joseph C. Haupt Associate T 505.724.9568
Marckia L. Hayes Associate T 702.464.7049
Stanley L. Garnett Shareholder T 303.223.1286
Christopher O. Murray Shareholder T 303.223.1183
David B. Meschke Associate T 303.223.1219
Kirk B. Lenhard Shareholder T 702.464.7045
Mitchell J. Langberg Shareholder T 702.464.7098
Debashree Nandy Associate T 505.724.9578
Hal Stratton Shareholder T 505.724.9596
Jonathan C. Sandler Shareholder T 310.564.8672
Jesse D. Sutz Associate T 303.223.1285
Patrick J. Reilly Shareholder T 702.464.7033
Arthur Zorio Shareholder T 775.398.3812
Joshua A. Weiss Associate T 303-223-1268
Kevin P. Walsh Shareholder T 303.223.1249
Neal Tomlinson Shareholder T 702.464.7043
Jeff Tillison Paralegal T 775.398.3819
Nancy Lindsley Paralegal T 775.398.3802
Penny G. Lalonde Paralegal T 303.223.1337