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Litigation

We vindicate your rights and resolve disputes.

When disputes arise that cannot be resolved through negotiation and judicial process is required, we are zealous advocates for your cause. Whether at trial, before an appellate court, or in mediation, arbitration, or administrative proceedings, we pursue your best course of action in an effective manner. 

Our group of experienced trial attorneys handle complex commercial litigation for Fortune 500 clients and for small businesses and individuals. Our Utah roots and wide client base keep us mindful that legal counsel needs to be both effective and efficient. You can be assured that we will uncompromisingly protect your interests.

Administrative & Local Government Law

The firm's administrative law practitioners have extensive experience handling matters for clients before a myriad of governmental agencies. Many of our lawyers have previously served in various capacities in federal and state government including: the Utah Attorney General's Office, the United States Department of Justice, and the United States Department of the Interior. We regularly appear before the Public Service Commission of Utah, the Department of Environmental Quality, the Department of Natural Resources, the Department of the Interior, the Utah State Tax Commission, and the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing. We also represent several Utah municipalities in all manner of litigation.

Representative cases:

  • Orchard Park Care Center v. Utah Dept. of Health, 2009 Ut. App. 284 (reversing agency denial of intervention)
  • Herriman City v. Swensen, 2008 WL 723725 (D. Utah 2008) (defeating claim that statute by which Cities of Cottonwood Heights, Sandy, Draper and Midvale created new school district violated Equal Protection Clause of U.S. Constitution)
  • Bourgeous v. Dept. of Commerce, Div. of Occupational & Professional Licensing, 981 P.2d 414 (Utah Ct. App. 1999) (successfully defending right of engineer to challenge denial of his application for license)
  • Bd. of Equalization of Salt Lake County v. Sinclair Oil Corp., 853 P.2d 892 (Utah 1993) (successfully challenged local taxing authority's increased tax assessment)

For more information, please contact Brian W. Burnett at (801) 530-7428 or .

Antitrust and Unfair Competition

Our Antitrust and Unfair Competition practice includes antitrust compliance counseling, litigation in state and federal courts, and proceedings before state and federal regulatory agencies. We have represented clients in the health care, advertising, manufacturing, accounting, cellular communications, and banking industries. Our cases have involved almost every area of antitrust and trade regulation law including: antitrust conspiracy claims under Section One of the Sherman Act; monopolization claims; price discrimination actions; state unfair competition and business tort litigation; state criminal antitrust investigations; intellectual property matters and mergers; acquisitions; and joint ventures. Our lawyers have held leadership positions on committees of the ABA Antitrust Section and have lectured and published articles on various antitrust topics including: antitrust damages; state action immunity; and hospital mergers.

Representative cases:

  • American Ad Management v. General Tel. Co. of Cal., 92 F.3d 781 (9th Cir. 1999) (successfully defended national Yellowpages publisher against per se price fixing claims)
  • Merger of Great Falls Hospitals, 70 ANTITRUST & TRADE REG. REP. (BNA) 90 (March 14, 1996) (represented Montana Attorney General in review, approval and regulation of hospital merger in Great Falls, Montana, from 1996-2006)

For more information, please contact Mark L. Callister at (801) 530-7425 or .

Appellate Practice

Whether our clients are seeking to establish new law, reverse an unfavorable finding in a lower court, or preserve favorable trial court rulings, the appellate attorneys of Callister Nebeker & McCullough bring compelling writing skills and persuasive oral advocacy to the appeals process. We have argued cases before the United States Supreme Court, various Federal Circuit Courts of Appeal, the Utah Supreme Court, and the Utah Court of Appeals. We pursue and defend appeals from cases handled at the trial court or administrative agency level by our own attorneys, and are regularly hired to take over cases that were handled below by other counsel. We are also asked to draft amicus curiae briefs on appellate matters of significant interest to our clients and their industries.

Representative cases:

  • U.S. by and through I.R.S. v. McDermott, 507 U.S. 447 (1993) (represented Utah's largest bank before the United States Supreme Court)
  • Wilcox v. Anchor Wate, Co. 164 P3d 353 (Utah 2007) (persuaded Utah Supreme Court to limit application of statutory prejudgment interest rate)

For more information, please contact Mark L. Callister at (801) 530-7425 or .

Bankruptcy

Our bankruptcy lawyers represent creditors (secured and unsecured), creditor's committees, trustees, and occasionally debtors. The firm specializes in creditor's rights and remedies before, during, and after bankruptcy. Much of our bankruptcy practice involves advising clients and drafting documents to minimize costs and problems in bankruptcy and to maximize the benefits of the bankruptcy code available to creditors. We have substantial experience in negotiating and obtaining bankruptcy court approval of cash collateral stipulations and adequate protection stipulations and in representing parties who are interested in purchasing assets from bankruptcy estates. The firm has particular expertise in confirming creditor's plans of reorganization in Chapter 11 cases and in protecting the rights of creditors in negotiating and confirming debtor's plans–both Chapter 11 and Chapter 13.

Members of the firm are actively involved in the bankruptcy section of the Utah State Bar and the Business Law section of the American Bar Association. Our bankruptcy lawyers have lectured at continuing legal education seminars and before industry groups. One of our lawyers is a court approved mediator for bankruptcy matters on the panel for the U.S. Courts for the District of Utah.

Representative cases:

  • In re Armstrong, 294 B.R. 344 (10th Cir. BAP 2003) (successfully defending Temporary Allowance Order granted to creditor for purpose of voting on debtor's Chapter 11 plan) • U.S. ex rel. EPC Corp. v. Travelers Cas. & Sur. Co. of America, 423 F.Supp.2d 1016 (D. Ariz. 2006) (representation of payment bond surety in adversary proceeding)
  • In re Golf, L.L.C., 322 B.R. 874 (Bkrtcy. D. Neb. 2004) (successfully prevented Chapter 11 debtor from selling estate property free and clear of all liens or interests)
  • In re Rebel Rents, Inc., 291 B.R. 520 (Bankr. C.D. Cal. 2003) (successfully representation of equipment lessor creditor seeking to require debtor to either assume or reject leases in Chapter 11 proceeding)

For more information, please contact Jeffery L. Shields at (801) 530-7374 or .

Construction

Our construction lawyers have a wealth of experience in all areas of government and private construction projects. We usually represent general contractors, offering advice in procurement and bidding, contract negotiation, surety and bonding issues, scheduling and construction management, change orders, delays and time extensions, differing site conditions, equitable adjustments, retention and payment, mechanic's liens and bond claims, failures and termination. We have successfully represented our clients before the United States Court of Federal Claims, as well as Federal District and State Courts in Utah, Nevada, California, Colorado, Idaho, and Wyoming. We have also represented our clients before the Board of Contract Appeals and in arbitration and mediation.

Representative cases:

  • Told v. Tig Premier Ins. Co., 149 Fed.Appx. 722 (10th Cir.2005) (successful prosecution of claims by general contractor after taking over subcontractor's work)
  • Traco Steel Erectors, Inc. v. Comtrol, Inc., 164 P.3d 353 (Utah Ct. App. 2007) (upholding trial verdict awarding general contractor damages for costs incurred after subcontractor abandoned construction projects)

For more information, please contact Cass C. Butler at (801) 530-7422 or .

Criminal Defense

Several members of the litigation section are former federal and state prosecutors who have extensive experience with a wide variety of white collar criminal matters. These attorneys regularly represent business and individual clients in tax, securities, insurance, and criminal fraud claims, environmental crimes, health care and other federal and state program fraud claims, professional licensing violations, and federal and state regulatory offenses. This work includes representation of clients in internal investigations, government investigations, grand jury proceedings, trials, and response to search warrants and subpoenas.

Representative Cases:

  • U.S. v. Lin Lyn Trading, Ltd., 149 F.3d 1112 (10th Cir. 1998) (obtained dismissal of indictment against import company for alleged customs violations)
  • U.S. v. Rohde, 159 F.3d 1298 (10th Cir. 1998) (perjury case)
  • U.S. v. Mondragon, 52 F.3d 291 (10th Cir. 1995) (reversing denial of motions to suppress evidence obtained through electronic surveillance)

For more information, please contact James D. Gilson at (801) 530-7374 or .

Environmental Litigation

Our environmental litigation practice includes the representation of clients regarding superfund sites, power plants, and water treatment plants. We routinely represent clients in actions involving state and federal environmental laws, including the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, CERCLA, and RCRA. We have represented national and Utah based companies at superfund sites, including Manville Corporation and Boise Cascade. We appear before the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the Utah Water Quality Board, and the Utah Air Quality Board. Our lawyers have lectured on various natural resource and environmental law issues to the Utah State Bar and other groups.

Representative Cases:

  • CIG Exploration v. Hill, 824 F.Supp. 1532 (D. Utah 1993) (granting summary judgment to gas companies sued by gas pipeline operator seeking reimbursement of royalty payments)

For more information, please contact Brian W. Burnett at (801) 530-7428 or .

Financial and Commercial Litigation

Our financial and commercial litigation practice includes loan workouts, loan recoveries, business liquidation through court proceedings and receiverships, lender liability litigation, and litigation involving secured transactions, letters of credit, negotiable instruments, and bank deposits. We litigate breach of contract claims, business torts, and breach of fiduciary duty claims. We also represent businesses in winding up or dissolution mode, and have extensive receivership experience. Representative clients include national and regional banks, asset based lenders, and factoring companies. Members of our firm have tried several lender liability claims to verdicts in favor of the lender.

Firm lawyers are actively involved in the Commercial Financial Services Committee of the Section of Business Law and the Commercial and Banking Litigation Committee of the Litigation Section of the Utah State Bar and American Bar Association. Members of the firm have chaired and participated in the subcommittee on drafting model jury instructions on contracts, secured transactions, and sales.

Representative cases:

  • Cook v. Chase Manhattan Mortg. Corp., 256 Fed.Appx. 223 (10th Cir. 2007) (affirmed summary judgment for mortgage company accused of violations of Fair Debt Collection Practices Act)
  • Beneficial Holdings, Inc. v. CVS Pharmacy, Inc., 2006 WL 288424 (D. Utah 2006) (obtained dismissal of claims against national pharmaceutical firm)
  • Wright Express Fin. Svcs. v. ACAS Acquisition (Logex) Inc., 2007 WL 4119130 (D. Utah) (action to recover on defaulted loan for national credit card company)
  • Home Sav. and Loan v. Aetna Cas. and Sur. Co., 817 P.2d 341 (Utah Ct. App. 1991) (upholding seven figure jury verdict against surety on fidelity bond for denial of coverage)

For more information, please contact Martin R. Denney at (801) 530-7414 or .

Insurance Litigation

In addition to insurance defense, our lawyers represent clients in regulatory compliance matters before the Utah Insurance Department as well as Utah State and Federal Courts. We represent insurance companies in cases involving agent fraud, bad faith, liquidation, reorganization, reinsurance, and claims underwriting. Our lawyers have lectured widely and have held leadership positions on local and national committees dealing with the litigation of insurance matters.

For more information, please contact Martin R. Denney at (801) 530-7414 or or Cass C. Butler at (801) 530-7422 or .

Intellectual Property

Our intellectual property litigation practice includes trademark, copyright, and patent infringement litigation; licensing disputes; misappropriation of trade secrets; unfair competition litigation; and enforcement of trademark registration rights before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and in State and Federal Courts. Our clients include artists, media and entertainment companies, sporting goods companies, and pharmaceutical manufacturers.

Representative cases:

  • Trace Minerals Research, L.C. v. Mineral Resources Int'l, Inc., 505 F.Supp.2d 1233 (D. Utah 2007) (granting summary judgment against health-food manufacturer for infringement of client's trademarks)
  • Cows Inc. v. Viacom Int'l, Inc., 2005 WL 3071772 (D. Utah) (representing international media conglomerate in trademark infringement action)

For more information, please contact James D. Gilson at (801) 530-7325 or .

Labor, Employment, Employee Benefits Litigation

Our employment litigators are trial-tested, having tried and arbitrated cases arising under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (prohibiting employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex or national origin), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Family & Medical Leave Act ("FMLA"), the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA"), the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA"), the Labor Management Relations Act ("LMRA"), the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act ("USERRA"), the Employee Retirement Income Security Act ("ERISA"), the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act ("COBRA"), the Equal Pay Act, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, 42 U.S.C. 1983, and the Utah Antidiscrimination Act. We have also handled cases involving fiduciary litigation, conversion privileges, disability and medical plans, multi-employer plans, and subrogation rights.

We regularly litigate the enforcement of covenants not to compete, including seeking temporary and permanent injunctions for their violation. Our attorneys have litigated labor and employment cases before all state and federal courts in Utah, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the United States Department of Labor, the National Labor Relations Board, the Utah Labor Commission, the Utah Antidiscrimination and Labor Division, and the Nevada Equal Rights Commission. Where employment claims are subject to an agreement to arbitrate, we will assist with the arbitration itself, as well as any court proceedings necessary to compel arbitration.

Representative cases:

  • Karls v. Texaco, Inc., 139 Fed. Appx. 29 (10th Cir. 2005) (upholding dismissal of pension plan participant's claims based on ERISA preemption)
  • Malik v. 7/Eleven Store No. 27875, 74 Fed. Appx. 887 (10th Cir. 2003) (affirming summary judgment against employee claiming race and age discrimination)
  • Winsor v. Hinckley Dodge, Inc., 79 F.3d 996 (10th Cir. 1996) (successfully defending automobile dealer against constructive discharge claims based on hostile work environment)
  • Baker v. Comprehensive Employee Solutions, 227 F.R.D. 354 (D. Utah 2005) (granting motion to dismiss class action negligence claim against plan administrator)

For more information, please contact Michael D. Stanger at (801) 530-7386 or .

Product Liability and Tort Defense

The Firm's product liability practice focuses on defense of claims against the makers and distributors of motor vehicles, heavy equipment, power tools, railroad equipment, and consumer products such as American Honda Motor Co., Suzuki Motor Corporation, Yamaha Motor Corp. U.S.A., John Deere Corporation, Bell Sports, Inc., Case Corporation, Volvo G.M. Trucks, Hitachi Koki, Ltd., Seats, Inc., and many other companies. Lawyers in the firm have successfully defended cases brought against the manufacturers of all-terrain vehicles, automobiles, trucks, tractors, yard equipment, pharmaceuticals, aircraft, etc. We have tried products liability cases throughout Utah, in California and Washington, and as far away as New Hampshire.

The firm has lawyers with experience as regional counsel for American Honda and Westinghouse Electric Corporation on various products liability matters. Lawyers in the firm have acted as counsel managing mass tort litigation on behalf of manufacturers (supervising local counsel from Minnesota to California and including Alaska). We are adept at early case analysis and resolution. We are experienced in mediation and in jury research, including mock trials and focus groups. We have briefed appeals involving product liability matters to the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth and Fourth Circuits and to the supreme courts and courts of appeal of Utah, California, Washington, New Hampshire, and other states. We pride ourselves in efficiently handling matters and working within budgets. We have an established network of experts in engineering, medicine, and numerous other technical fields.

The firm's tort practice also includes litigation of insurance coverage questions, litigation of accident cases involving claims of premises liability, asbestos claims, traffic accidents, construction accidents, railroad accidents, bicycle accidents, defense of civil rights matters for public agencies, and litigation of various commercial torts, including commercial defamation, fraud, employment disputes, and associated claims. After he was appointed upon the petition of the Attorneys General of Utah and Arizona, the Special Fiduciary of the United Effort Plan Trust (a trust formerly controlled by Warren Jeffs and other members of FLDS leadership) engaged us to defend against tort claims brought against the Trust on the theory that Warren Jeffs' criminal acts fell within the scope of his duties as a trustee.

Representative Cases:

  • Knauss v. Ultimate Nutrition, Inc., 514 F.Supp.2d 241 (D. Conn. 2007) (defense of nutritional supplement supplier against professional skier's claims that product were tainted with steroid)
  • Manassas Travel, Inc. v. Worldspan, L.P., 2008 WL 1925135 (D. Utah 2008) (dismissing claims for tortious interference and conspiracy brought against computerized airline reservations service)
  • Leigh Furniture and Carpet Co. v. Isom, 657 P.2d 293 (Utah 1982) (seminal case establishing tort of interference with prospective economic relations)

For more information, please contact Martin R. Denney at (801) 530-7414 or .

Real Estate Litigation

Our real estate litigators have substantial experience in litigation arising out of the acquisition, development, financing, leasing or sale of real estate, both commercial and residential. Members of this practice group represent clients in foreclosure, bankruptcy, workout, quiet title, trespass, adverse possession, title disputes, boundary disputes, landlord tenant disputes, evictions, condemnation, land use appeals, broker representations, lis pendens and all other real estate litigation matters.

Representative cases:

  • Gallegos v. Lloyd, 178 P.3d 922 (Utah Ct. App. 2008) (reversing trial court's award of attorney fees in trespass case)
  • Clark v. Smay, 110 P.3d 140 ( Utah Ct. App. 2005) (successful quiet title action)

For more information, please contact T. Richard Davis at (801) 530-7421 or .