Litigation can be brutal. Too often, individuals and businesses suffer needlessly because lawyers insist on doing things "the same old way." Not with us. Not with Mike. Mike's trademark is his relentless pursuit of new and better answers. His hallmark is the recognition that better answers come only with understanding. Not just surface familiarity, but a true appreciation of your world. Mike takes the time to listen, to answer questions, and to ask questions. He doesn't just ask "where do you want to go?" He gets you there. As a young lawyer, Mike honed his courtroom presence as a deputy district attorney working for former Colorado Governor Bill Ritter, then the Denver District Attorney. Now, as a civil trial lawyer, Mike focuses his practice on business litigation, personal injury and construction defect litigation. Mike brings his leadership and presence to obtain significant verdicts and settlements for his clients.
Mike is a past President of the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association. He is a Colorado Super Lawyer® in the field of Business Litigation. The National Trial Lawyers have included him in the list of Top 100 Trial Lawyers. Mike has tried approximately 200 cases to verdict. Among the recent cases that he has tried:
- After the Utah office of a large national law firm mishandled a client’s subdivision application for an 8,650-acre ranch near Park City, Utah, causing the client to lose 40% of its valuable density rights, Mike was an instrumental part of the trial team that obtained one of the largest legal malpractice jury verdicts in recent U.S. history. The jury awarded all of the $21.36 million that Michael requested at trial, but assessed 40% comparative fault against the client, thus reducing the award to $12.8 million. The trial court recently awarded an additional $1.46 million for prejudgment interest. 910 Cattle Company v. Stoel Rives, LLP, Case No. Civil No. 100907407, Third District Court, Salt Lake County, Utah.
- A medical device manufacturer represented by the Firm was facing a number of mass tort products liability lawsuits and relied upon its insurance company to defend and provide settlements when appropriate to plaintiffs. The insurance company failed to perform as it should have and the Firm sued the insurer for bad faith. The case involved hundreds of thousands of documents and the team at Ogborn Mihm, LLP was able to obtain a significant settlement for the client.
- A South Dakota real estate agent and financial advisor representing an elderly couple talked them into rejecting a number of qualified offers for a large ranch the couple owned. Instead, the agent had the couple sell the ranch to the agent for approximately half the amount that had been offered by other potential purchasers. Mike Ogborn and his partner, Murray Ogborn, presented the case to a jury in Burke, South Dakota and received a verdict in favor of the clients in the amount of $1,568,200. On remand after appeal, the total award to the client was in excess of $2,000,000 (inclusive of costs and prejudgment interest).
- A managing partner of a small business resigned after just over a year in business because it was not profitable. The remaining partner paid for keeping the business going and took over management of the business. When the business started to cash flow, the partner that resigned returned to allege the remaining partner had mismanaged the business thereby causing losses of over a million dollars. The case was tried in arbitration and no monetary damages were awarded to the partner who resigned and sued.
- When the Director of a non-profit organization was defamed and wrongfully terminated from the Board, despite a sizable donation to allow the non-profit to begin construction on a new facility, Mike filed suit for wrongful discharge and defamation. The jury found that the nonprofit Butterfly Pavilion breached a contract with its founder/Director and defamed his character. The jury awarded the Director $400,000 for the breach of contract and $150,000 for defamation of character. The jury also awarded $150,000 in punitive damages, finding that he was defamed with malice. Weissmann v. Butterfly Pavilion.
- When a construction company discovered that all of its aluminum forms had been stolen, and reported a claim to its insurance company, the company’s insurance carrier denied the claim and refused to reimburse the company for the loss of the forms. Mike brought suit for insurance bad faith. After a jury trial, the insurance carrier was found to have breached the insurance contract in bad faith and the construction company was awarded in excess of $900,000.00.
Mike understands that not all cases are cases that should be tried, but each case should be prepared as if it will be tried to give the client the best opportunity to achieve a fair or adequate result.
As a former President of the Colorado Trial Lawyers’ Association (CTLA), Mike is the leader of Colorado’s largest plaintiff and consumer law association. Mike has practiced with his father, Murray, since 1996. Murray and Mike are the only father-son team to serve as presidents of the CTLA.
In addition to being active in with his children's activities and sports, Mike is the past president of his Home Owners Association and now elected to the Metropolitan District serving his community. Mike has a daughter in high school and son in college. When not working or cheering for his children in their endeavors, he likes to spend time in the gym and ride his motorcycle.