August 15, 2018

Archives for June 1, 2018

Carlos A. Samour, Jr., Appointed to Colorado Supreme Court

On Wednesday, May 30, 2018, Governor Hickenlooper announced the appointment of Hon. Carlos A. Samour, Jr., to the Colorado Supreme Court. He will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Chief Justice Nancy Rice, effective July 2, 2018.

Samour is currently the Chief Judge of the 18th Judicial District. He has been recognized frequently for presiding over the Aurora movie theater shooting trial. He was appointed to the 18th Judicial District Court in 2006 and became Chief Judge in 2014. Prior to his work on the 18th Judicial District Court, Samour was a deputy district attorney in Denver for 10 years. He was also at Holland & Hart in private practice for five years. He has also clerked for Judge Robert McWilliams of the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. He received his law degree from the University of Denver with honors, and received his undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado at Denver. He is a Colorado native and avid Broncos fan.

For more information about the appointment, click here.

Colorado Court of Appeals: Announcement Sheet, 5/31/2018

On Thursday, May 31, 2018, the Colorado Court of Appeals issued eight published opinions and ten unpublished opinions.

Landmark Towers Association, Inc. v. UMB Bank, N.A.

People v. Jaquez

People in Interest of G.B.

People v. Laeke

People v. Jackson

Cordell v. Klingsheim

Kelly v. Board of County Commissioners

Arline v. American Family Mutual Insurance Co.

Summaries of these cases are forthcoming.

Neither State Judicial nor the Colorado Bar Association provides case summaries for unpublished appellate opinions. The case announcement sheet is available here.

Colorado Supreme Court: One-year Statute of Limitations Does Not Apply to Bad Faith Actions Under C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1)

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in Rooftop Restoration, Inc. v. American Family Mutual Insurance Co. on Tuesday, May 29, 2018.

Unreasonable Delay and Denial of Insurance Benefits—Statute of Limitations—Statutory Interpretation.

The supreme court considered a certified question from the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado. Specifically, the court determined whether the one-year statute of limitations in C.R.S. § 13-80-103(1)(d) governs actions under C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1), which creates a cause of action to address the unreasonable delay or denial of insurance benefits. The court concluded that the one-year statute of limitations does not apply to actions brought under C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1) because the legislature did not intend C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1) to operate as a penalty within the context of the statutory scheme.

The certified question was answered in the negative and the case was returned to the district court for further proceedings.

Summary provided courtesy of Colorado Lawyer.

Colorado Supreme Court: Survivor Statute Does Not Allow Personal Injury Award to be Limited

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in Guarantee Trust Life Insurance Co. v. Estate of Casper on Tuesday, May 29, 2018.

Unreasonable Delay and Denial of Insurance Benefits—Abatement—Actual Damages.

The supreme court considered the operation of C.R.S. § 13-20-101, Colorado’s survival statute, and C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1), a statutory cause of action for the unreasonable delay or denial of insurance benefits. The court also considered the scope of the trial court’s authority to enter a final judgment nunc pro tunc.

The original plaintiff in this case died after receiving a favorable jury verdict but before that verdict had been reduced to a written and signed entry of final judgment. Defendant then moved to substantially reduce the jury award, arguing that the survival statute barred certain damages. The court concluded that the survival statute does not limit the jury’s verdict in favor of the original plaintiff. The court further concluded that an award of attorney fees under C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1) is a component of the “actual damages” of a successful claim under that section and that, although the survival statute did not limit the damages awarded by the jury, the trial court abused its discretion by entering a final judgment nunc pro tunc.

The court of appeals’ judgment was affirmed in part and reversed in part.

Summary provided courtesy of Colorado Lawyer.

Colorado Supreme Court: C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1) Does Not Require Reduction of Damages Award by Amount of Benefits Delayed but Ultimately Paid

The Colorado Supreme Court issued American Family Mutual Insurance Co. v. Barriga on Tuesday, May 29, 2018.

Unreasonable Delay and Denial of Insurance Benefits—Damages.

The supreme court considered the operation of a statutory scheme that prohibits the unreasonable delay or denial of insurance benefits. Specifically, the court considered whether an award of damages under C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1) must be reduced by an insurance benefit unreasonably delayed but ultimately recovered by an insured outside of a lawsuit. The court held that an award under C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1) must not be reduced by an amount unreasonably delayed but eventually paid by an insurer because the plain text of the statute provides no basis for such a reduction. The court further concluded that the general rule against double recovery for a single harm does not prohibit a litigant from recovering under claims for both a violation of C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1) and breach of contract.

The court of appeals’ decision was affirmed.

Summary provided courtesy of Colorado Lawyer.

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 5/31/2018

On Thursday, May 31, 2018, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued no published opinion and four unpublished opinions.

United States v. Smith

United States v. Russian

Scott v. Weaver

Bailey v. American Phoenix, Inc.

Case summaries are not provided for unpublished opinions. However, some published opinions are summarized and provided by Legal Connection.