Murphy & Decker, P.C.

Main Office: 730 17th Street
Suite 925 Denver, CO 80202

Wyoming Office: 109 East 17th Street
Suite 5306 Cheyenne, WY 82001

Areas of Practice
Attorney Profiles

Reported Cases and Firm Accomplishments

A collection of our past work and attorney accomplishments:

The best evidence of Murphy & Decker, P.C.’s commitment to a positive result for every client is the record of success achieved by each of our firm's lawyers. Below are some examples of our past work as well as individual and firm accomplishments.

“Best Law Firms” Recognition: Murphy & Decker, P.C., is honored to be listed in the 2017 U.S. News & World Report listing of Best Law Firms in America. We appreciate all of the clients and colleagues who contributed to our ranking.

Best’s Recommended Insurance Attorneys: Murphy & Decker, P.C., is proud to be included in the 2017 A.M. Best’s Directories of Recommended Insurance Attorneys. Since 1927, these directories have been leading publications in the insurance defense industry and premier reference tools for locating client-recommended attorneys. The firm has been listed in the Best Directory for several years and very much appreciates the opportunity to continue our work with so many outstanding carriers and their insured.

Best Lawyers in America: Mike Decker has been recognized again by “Best Lawyers in America” in its 2017 Edition for his work in the areas of Commercial and Construction Law.

Highest Possible Firm Rating by Martindale Hubbell: Murphy & Decker, P.C., received an AV-Preeminent firm rating for 2016 by Martindale-Hubbell. This distinction is the highest possible rating a law firm can achieve for both legal ability and ethical standards. The firm has been AV-rated every year since its inception.

2016 Colorado Super Lawyers ®: Dan Murphy and Mike Decker were once again recognized as Colorado Super Lawyers in the 2016 edition of Law & Politics magazine. Only 5% of all lawyers in Colorado receive this honor each year. Eric Kirby was recognized as a “Rising Star” in the same Publication.

Defense Verdict for Contractor Employees: In November 2016, Dan Murphy and Mike Decker successfully defended personal injury claims against three employees of a highway contractor. The plaintiff fell while working on an elevated bridge and alleged that the three employees were liable because they directed him to work in an unsafe way and without necessary fall protection. After a week-long jury trial, judgment was entered in favor of all three clients on all claims.

Victory at the Court of Appeals for Commercial Property Owner: In October 2016, Mike Decker and Andrew Figel represented a commercial property owner who had previously been subject to a default judgment in favor of two former tenants. The tenants alleged over $1 Million in damages but the trial judge awarded only a small amount of damages as part of the default judgment. The tenants appealed and argued that the trial judge abused her discretion by failing to award all of the damages they presented at the damages hearing. Following full briefing, the Court of Appeals agreed with the trial court and refused to award the tenants the excessive damages they were claiming.

$3 Million in Claimed Damages Dismissed for Wrongful Death Claim: In August 2016, Dan Murphy and Andrew Figel significantly limited potential damages in a wrongful death action in a case of first impression. The husband and children of the deceased were seeking recovery of over $3 Million in damages for the future life care of a special needs child. Dan and Andrew filed a motion arguing that these damages were not recoverable under the Wrongful Death Act because they were not caused by the death of the child’s mother and that any required benefits were covered by public benefits. The trial court agreed and prohibited the plaintiffs from further pursuing these damages.

U.S. News & World Report Best Law Firms: Murphy & Decker, P.C., was proud to be listed in the 2016 Edition of U.S. News & World Report’s Best Law Firms. Firms included in the list are recognized “for professional excellence with persistently impressive ratings from clients and peers.” Achieving a ranking indicates “a unique combination of quality law practice and breadth of legal expertise.”

Mike Decker Recognized in the 2016 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America: The 2016 edition of The Best Lawyers in America listed Mike Decker for his work in the areas of Commercial Litigation and Construction Law. The publication recognizes the top 4% of practicing attorneys working in the United States based upon evaluations submitted by other lawyers and clients. Mike was also recognized in the 2014 and 2015 editions.

2015 Colorado Super Lawyers®: Dan Murphy and Mike Decker were once again recognized as Colorado Super Lawyers in the 2015 edition of Law & Politics magazine. Only 5% of all lawyers in Colorado receive this honor each year. Eric Kirby was recognized as a "Rising Star" in the same Publication.

Best's Recommended Insurance Attorneys in 2015: Murphy & Decker, P.C., is proud to be included in the 2015 Edition of A.M. Best's Directories of Recommended Insurance Attorneys. Since 1927, these directories have been leading publications in the insurance defense industry and premier reference tools for locating client-recommended attorneys. The firm has been listed in the Best Directory for several years and very much appreciates the opportunity to continue our work with so many outstanding carriers and their insureds.

Highest Possible Firm Rating by Martindale Hubbell in 2015: Murphy & Decker, P.C., received an AV-Preeminent firm rating for 2015 by Martindale-Hubbell. This distinction is the highest possible rating a law firm can achieve for both legal ability and ethical standards. The firm has been AV-rated every year since its inception.

Best Lawyers in America: Mike Decker was selected for inclusion in the 21st Edition of The Best Lawyers in America for his work in the areas of Construction Law and Commercial Litigation.

Judgment for Subcontractor Client: In July 2015, Dan Murphy obtained summary judgment in favor of his subcontractor client. The case involved the construction of an exclusive hotel and resort in Vail, Colorado. The plaintiff general contractor was seeking the recovery of more than $15 million in alleged damages. The Court dismissed all claims against the firm's client based on the doctrine of claim preclusion.

Judgment in favor of property manager: In June 2015, Mike Decker and Liz Gillespie represented the property manager for an apartment building. The plaintiff claimed injuries from a fire in the building and alleged that the property manager was responsible due to claimed building code violations and the claimed failure to evict the tenant believed to have caused the fire. After a five day jury trial, the jury found that the property manager had no liability and assessed 100% of the fault to the tenant.

Trial victory for firm client: In May 2015, Mike Decker successfully represented a community association that was sued by a member of the association. The member claimed that the association failed to remedy water intrusion and other damages to the member's property. After a three day trial, the association prevailed on all of the claims alleging property damage. The member was also ordered to provide access to its property as required by the governing documents.

Judgment for Firm Client: In May 2015, Dan Murphy represented an actuarial group that had been sued following the dissolution of a health insurance company. The plaintiff was a third party investor that argued the failure to properly value the health insurer resulted in the loss of his investment. The total damages alleged exceeded $3 million. Dan filed a motion for summary judgment arguing that the "shareholder standing rule" precluded the claim. The judge agreed and granted summary judgment in favor of Dan's client on all claims.

Judgment and award of attorney fees for firm client: In November 2014, Mike Decker successfully represented a firm client in a commercial dispute. The client provided earnest money to be held in trust as part of an anticipated commercial business transaction. Ultimately, the transaction did not take place and the client requested the return of funds. The other party refused to return the funds. It argued that the funds were not being provided in trust, or, alternatively, that the amount deposited was reduced significantly by costs incurred during the due diligence period. Following a jury trial, judgment was entered in favor of the firm's client on all claims. The judge awarded attorney fees and costs to the firm's client after the entry of the jury's verdict.

Summary judgment for firm client: In September 2014, Mike Decker obtained summary judgment for a firm client on all claims made by the plaintiff. The client was a community owners association that had been sued by an owner of community property. The plaintiff claimed a variety of personal injuries due to alleged maintenance practices at the community property. In an earlier lawsuit, Mike had obtained a dismissal of the plaintiff's claims against the client with prejudice. A motion for summary judgment was filed arguing that the prior dismissal prevented the plaintiff from pursuing his claims against the association in the new lawsuit. The district court agreed and entered summary judgment in favor of the firm's client.

Summary judgment in premises claim: In July 2014, Dan Murphy obtained summary judgment for his client in a premises liability claim. The plaintiff filed suit alleging personal injuries due to a slip-and-fall in the parking lot of supermarket. The firm's client was the snow removal company hired to remove snow at the premises. The motion for summary judgment argued that the snow removal contractor was not a "landowner" under the Colorado Premises Liability Act because the contractor was not in possession of the property or conducting an activity on the land at the time of the alleged incident. The district court agreed and entered summary judgment in favor of the firm's client.

Dismissal of all claims against firm's clients: In July 2014, the district court upheld the dismissal of all claims against Mike Decker's clients in a premises dispute. The dispute arose from a lease for commercial space. The plaintiffs alleged that they were improperly locked out of the premises by the firm's clients, who were the building owner and its property manager. The court eventually dismissed all claims due to the plaintiffs' failure to make sufficient disclosures required by the Colorado Rules of Civil Procedure. The plaintiffs filed a motion to reconsider that was denied on all points.

2014 Colorado Super Lawyers ®: Dan Murphy and Mike Decker were once again recognized as Colorado Super Lawyers in the 2014 edition of Law & Politics magazine. Only 5% of all lawyers in Colorado receive this honor each year. Eric Kirby was recognized as a "Rising Star" in the same publication.

Judgment and fees for firm client: In March 2014, Mike Decker successfully represented a commercial condominium association at trial. The case began when the association made claims against the owner of numerous storage units for unpaid assessments. The owner brought counterclaims alleging that the assessments were improperly made and that the practices of the association had caused her to incur substantial lost revenue. Following trial, judgment was entered in favor of Mike's client on all claims. The association defeated all of the counterclaims that were alleged against it and was awarded the entire amount of the outstanding assessments claimed plus interest, litigation costs, and attorney fees.

Defense verdict for Wyoming traffic control subcontractor: In October 2013, Dan Murphy obtained a defense verdict for a traffic control subcontractor in Wyoming. The plaintiff motorcycle rider was severely injured in an accident that occurred in a construction zone. The plaintiff alleged that the accident was caused by poor road conditions and a lack of adequate traffic control. Immediately prior to trial, two other subcontractor defendants settled with the plaintiff. The defendant general contractor settled with the plaintiff following the second day of trial. The firm's client went to verdict as the lone remaining defendant. At the end of a two week trial, the plaintiff's counsel asked the jury to deliver a verdict in excess of $11 million. The jury returned a defense verdict in favor of the firm's client on all claims.

Defense verdict for contractor : In October 2013, Dan Murphy successfully defended a traffic control contractor in a Wyoming jury trial. The plaintiff was a motorcycle rider who was severely injured while driving through a construction zone in Wyoming. The plaintiff alleged that the accident was caused by poor road conditions and a lack of adequate traffic control. Immediately prior to trial, two other subcontractors settled with the plaintiff. After the second day of trial, the general contractor settled with the plaintiff, leaving only the traffic control subcontractor as a defendant. At the close of a two week trial, plaintiff's counsel asked the jury to deliver a verdict in excess of $11 million. The jury returned a defense verdict in favor of Dan's client on all claims.

2013 Colorado Super Lawyers ®: Dan Murphy and Mike Decker were again recognized as Colorado Super Lawyers in the 2013 edition of Law & Politics magazine. Only 5% of all lawyers in Colorado receive this honor each year. Eric Kirby and Danielle Bergman were each recognized as “Rising Stars” in the same publication.

Best Lawyers in America: Mike Decker was selected for inclusion in the 20th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America for his work in the area of Commercial Litigation.

Best’s Recommended Insurance Attorneys: Murphy & Decker, P.C., has been included in the 2013 Edition of A.M. Best’s Directories of Recommended Insurance Attorneys and Adjusters. Since 1927, these directories have been leading publications in the insurance defense industry and premier reference tools for locating client-recommended attorneys.

2012 Colorado Super Lawyers ®: Dan Murphy and Mike Decker were each recognized as Colorado Super Lawyers in the 2012 edition of Law & Politics magazine. Only 5% of all lawyers in Colorado receive this distinction each year. In addition, firm attorneys Greg Lindsay and Eric Kirby were recognized as "Rising Stars" in the same publication.

Firm Receives Highest Possible Rating for 2012: Murphy & Decker, P.C. was pleased to be recognized as an AV-rated firm in 2012 by Martindale-Hubbell®. This distinction is the highest possible rating a law firm can achieve for both legal ability and ethical standards. The firm has been AV-rated every year since its inception.

Judgment for Snow Removal Contractor: In September 2012, Mike Decker and Danielle Bergman obtained a judgment in favor of a snow removal contractor. The firm’s client was hired to remove snow at a townhome complex. The plaintiff alleged that a few days after a snowstorm he was injured when he slipped on ice that had formed on the front porch of a townhome. Mike and Dani argued that under the terms of the maintenance contract their client had no duty for the condition of the property several days after a snowfall event. The judge agreed and entered judgment in favor of the firm’s client on all claims made by the plaintiff.

Highest Martindale-Hubbell Rating for 2011: Murphy & Decker, P.C. was once again recognized as an AV-rated firm for 2011 by Martindale-Hubbell®. This is the highest possible firm rating for legal ability and ethical standards. The firm has been AV-rated every year since its inception.

2011 Colorado Super Lawyers®: Murphy & Decker, P.C. were recognized as Colorado Super Lawyers in the 2011 edition of Law and Politics magazine. Only 5% of all lawyers in Colorado receive this distinction each year. Dan was also recognized for his work in 2010.

Claims against client dismissed by Wyoming court: In October 2011, Dan Murphy and Eric Kirby filed a successful motion to dismiss all claims against their client in the U.S. District Court for the District of Wyoming. Dan and Eric demonstrated that the plaintiff failed to comply with applicable service rules. Relying on cases from various jurisdictions, Dan and Eric convinced the judge that it was appropriate to dismiss the claims against their client due to the plaintiff's violation of the rules.

Dismissal of all claims against commercial food supplier: In September 2011, Mike Decker was able to get all claims against his client dismissed in a case involving alleged E. Coli contamination. Mike's client supplied beef to a commercial restaurant and the plaintiffs claimed they were injured after eating at the restaurant. The claims against Mike's client were dismissed after demonstrating that all of the beef supplied by the client had been properly tested and found to be free of contamination. The case continued against other parties.

Summary judgment for clients entered by Wyoming court: In May 2011, Dan Murphy and Eric Kirby obtained a summary judgment for their clients, who were individual representatives of a corporation sued in Wyoming. The case involved claims for negligence and strict product liability related to a slope stabilization project. Dan and Eric convinced the court that the claims were filed outside the time allowed by the applicable statute of limitations.

Summary judgment for developer: In April 2011, Mike Decker obtained a summary judgment for his clients in a case involving alleged construction defects at a large shopping mall. The current owner of the mall alleged over $3 million in damages. Mike represented former developers for the mall property. Less than a year after the lawsuit was filed, the judge entered summary judgment in favor of Mike's clients on all claims. The case continued against many additional parties.

2010 Colorado Super Lawyers®: Dan Murphy was recognized as Colorado Super Lawyers in the 2010 edition of Law and Politics. Only five percent of all lawyers in Colorado receive this distinction each year.

2010 Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers™: The firm of Murphy & Decker, P.C., has been accepted into the 2010 LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell® Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers™.  This exclusive directory is limited to AV-rated law firms that have achieved the highest possible rankings for legal ability and ethical standards.

Defense verdict in auto accident case: In March 2010, Dan Murphy and Eric Kirby represented a client in a case involving a rear-end auto collision.  The plaintiff claimed he was injured after being hit from behind by Dan and Eric's client.  Although liability for the accident was admitted, responsibility for the injuries being claimed by the plaintiff was denied.  After deliberating for four hours, the jury found in favor of Dan and Eric's client and awarded no damages to the plaintiff as a result of the accident.

Judgment for general contractor: In January 2010, Dan Murphy and Eric Kirby obtained a judgment in favor of a general contractor who was being sued by a site worker claiming personal injuries due to a fall.  The plaintiff had alleged damages of at least $1 million.

Victory for electrical subcontractor:  In November 2009, Mike Decker represented an electrical subcontractor in an arbitration involving alleged defects with the electrical system at a condominium project.  After a three-day hearing, the arbitrator found in favor of Mike's client on all claims and awarded attorney fees and costs against the opposing parties.

Treatise on Colorado construction law: In June 2009, Mike Decker was a contributing author in the latest edition of The Practitioner's Guide to Colorado Construction Law. The new edition of the treatise is published by the Continuing Legal Education of Colorado.

Important decision by the Supreme Court of Colorado: In January 2009, Dan Murphy and Mike Decker represented a subcontractor before the Supreme Court of Colorado.  The decision issued by the Supreme Court definitively interpreted provisions of AIA form contracts related to builders' risk insurance coverage and clarified the scope of claim waivers found in the form agreements.  The case was remanded to the trial court for further proceedings necessary to determine the extent that the claims against Dan and Mike's client were waived.

Developer wins at the Court of Appeals:  In September 2008, the Colorado Court of Appeals issued an opinion in favor of Mike Decker's clients, a group of developers and the individual owner of a development company.  The Court of Appeals upheld an award of attorney fees to Mike's clients.  The trial court judge awarded the attorney fees after the claims made against Mike's clients were dismissed during the course of a multi-week trial.

All claims against clients dismissed: Mike Decker and Greg Lindsay represented a real estate broker and company who were involved with the sale of a hotel.  After more than five years of litigation, a motion to dismiss filed by Mike and Greg was granted.  All claims against their clients were dismissed by the trial court judge.

Real estate broker prevails on all claimsMike Decker and Greg Lindsay represented a real estate broker and his parent company in a suit brought by the purchaser of a commercial property.  Summary judgment was entered in favor of Mike and Greg's clients on all claims by the trial court.  In August 2008, the Colorado Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court and held that Mike and Greg's clients were entitled to judgment on all claims.

Successful trial for general contractor: In October 2007, Dan Murphy and Mike Decker went to trial and represented a general contractor in Eagle, Colorado.  The owners of a condominium unit alleged that toxic mold had formed in their unit due to construction defects.  After a two-week trial, the jury returned a defense verdict in favor of Dan and Mike's client on all claims.

Defense verdict for general contractor: In September 2007, Mike Decker and Greg Lindsay defended a general contractor and two of its employees in a construction defect action brought against them by the owner of a single-family home.  After a two-week trial, the jury returned a defense verdict in favor of Mike and Greg's clients on all claims.

Victory for general contractor: Dan Murphy and Mike Decker represented a general contractor who had been sued by the owner of a commercial office building.  The owner alleged negligence in the construction of the exterior concrete panels for the building.  The trial court judge granted summary judgment in favor of Dan and Mike's client on all claims.  In September 2007, the Colorado Court of Appeals affirmed the summary judgment in favor of Dan and Mike's client.

Firm attorneys contribute to book series on Colorado construction law: In July 2007, Dan Murphy, Mike Decker, and Greg Lindsay each authored a section of The Practitioner's Guide to Colorado Construction Law.  The revised series is published by Continuing Legal Education of Colorado.

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2012 Colorado Super Lawyers ®: