For 17 years, Marie Williams has advocated for clients in both appellate and trial courts. Her areas of expertise include developing comprehensive legal strategies, writing (or re-writing) critical motions, and handling appeals from start to finish. She collaborates with trial counsel to provide top-notch legal work that is highly valuable to the client.
Before starting her own practice, Marie was a partner in the Business Litigation group of an AmLaw 100 firm for 9 years. She has first-chaired bench and jury trials, providing a solid foundation for her appellate work. Marie has worked on an extensive variety of civil litigation matters, including particular expertise defending banks and insurance companies in class actions and other complex litigation. Marie also has experience handling insurance coverage litigation, employment and ERISA litigation, a panoply of contract and tort litigation, and appeals from administrative rulings in a variety of industries.
Advocating in Appellate Courts
In state and federal appellate courts, Marie helps clients capitalize on a second opportunity to make their case. She understands the unique appellate rules and procedures for substantive briefs, oral arguments, motion practice, pursuing and resisting petitions for extraordinary writs, and seeking and opposing discretionary appeals. When Justice Allison Eid was appointed to the Colorado Supreme Court in 2006, Marie served as her first law clerk.
Some examples of her work:
- Successfully obtained extraordinary relief from state supreme courts, including through certified questions of law and original proceedings.
- Over the span of 15 years, successfully defended one of the largest automobile insurers against numerous class action and individual cases alleging policy breaches and statutory violations, and requesting unlimited insurance benefits. Class certification was denied in every instance, and the denials were affirmed on appeal.
- Argued a case of first impression in the Tenth Circuit related to tolling the statute of limitations for members of a putative class.
- Successfully defended a mortgage lender on appeal in multiple cases alleging improper foreclosure and other mortgage-related claims.
- Fearlessly argued to a Colorado Court of Appeals judge that a decision he had authored just months prior was wrongly decided.
Prevailing in Class Actions & Complex Commercial Litigation
Marie has defended businesses in class actions and other complex commercial litigation. Highlights of her work include:
- First-chaired federal court trials against a major automobile insurer and, in a case that originally sought unlimited insurance benefits on behalf of a statewide class over a span of 25 years, limited the named plaintiff to recovery of $40,000 in insurance benefits.
- Successfully defended national banks against claims of wrongful lending practices, a challenge to the constitutionality of Colorado’s foreclosure process and the bank’s process, and unauthorized access to an account by a teller.
- Defended a major national bank against claims of breach of fiduciary duty in the context of residential mortgage-backed securities.
- Represented a utility company on affirmative claims against an insurance broker for breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and fraudulent nondisclosures and misrepresentations.
- Through both binding arbitration and dispositive motions, successfully defended an employer in the food and beverage industry against claims of workplace discrimination.
- J.D., 2000, University of Colorado School of Law, Order of the Coif, University of Colorado Law Review (Casenote & Comment editor)
- B.S., Mathematics, 1997, Wake Forest University, magna cum laude, Nancy Susan Reynolds Scholar
Admission to Practice
- United States Supreme Court
- United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
- United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
- United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
- United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
- United States District Court for the District of Colorado
- Colorado Super Lawyers®, Appellate, 2017-2018
- Colorado Super Lawyers Rising Star, Appellate, 2011 & 2013-2016
- Law360 Rising Star, Insurance, 2014
- Troop Leader & Service Unit Manager, Girl Scouts of Colorado
- Member, NICU Family Advisory Council, Children’s Hospital Colorado