Fantastic Skills & Resources
Our abilities, technology and tools empower you.
Our headquarters in Denver was designed from the ground up to serve as a high-technology litigation platform. Everything here is engineered to enable and strengthen your legal team in the development of effective litigation solutions.
We are far ahead of even the most technologically advanced firms. We publish frequently and lecture nationally on advanced litigation technology. Some of the nation’s top firms consult with us to learn how we implement our tools. After extensive testing, we frequently deploy completely courtroom technologies, setting new standards in advocacy. These technologies include new ways of comparing and displaying sets of exhibits and computerized reconstructions, 3-D modeling of medical imagery, industrial tomography, layered interactive schematics and more.
We have the ability to instantly retrieve and project key exhibits with split-screen comparisons, callouts, highlights and comparisons. We can create demonstrative illustrations during trial to adapt to rapidly changing evidentiary presentations and arguments, and we have the ability to cross-reference all exhibits almost instantly with our trial presentation software. We can do all of this without becoming bogged down in our technology, and without upsetting our communication and rapport with the jury. Of course, we fully understand the most nuanced evidentiary issues related to the use of this technology, so that court approval for our courtroom tools is not a barrier to our presenations.
Engineering: Our Strength
Many of our victories have been in cases involving complex engineering and scientific issues. We excel in these cases because we master the science and engineering involved in the dispute. Our litigation skills are dramatically enhanced by this enlightenment, providing an extra dimension of understanding to enhance the effectiveness of our preparation and presentation of your case.
Many lawyers struggle when handling complex scientific and engineering issues, relying upon their experts to give them a superficial understanding of the issues and then relinquishing much of the planning and theory of the case to engineers and other experts with no real understanding of litigation. At Godfrey | Johnson, we employ the opposite approach: we understand all of the material in a case, employing our experts only within their own fields of expertise. This maintains the credibility of our experts and our attorneys in the eyes of the court, jury and opposing counsel.
Working with experts
We have an added advantage when we work with or cross-examine expert witnesses, because we speak their language and we understand their fields of expertise.
When we depose or retain expert witnesses, we address the topic on equal footing with them. We are never misled by peddlers of “junk science.” With a deeper level of understanding, we can deal much more effectively with experts on both sides of the case.
Challenges to expert testimony have become the cutting edge of legal practice in complex engineering disputes. We have extensive experience litigating the admissibility of expert testimony under the rapidly evolving rules of evidence. These rules control whether an expert is permitted to testify, and to what extent, and this can change the outcome of a case. It is essential to utilize lawyers who understand enough about the scientific issues to spot defects in the reasoning or basis employed by an expert, and who have enough trial experience to properly address these issues. This is the only way to prevent unfounded testimony offered by an opponent, while at the same time ensuring that your own experts are not vulnerable to similar attacks. While very few law firms have these abilities, this mixture of skills is what defines our firm.
Solutions In Legal Science
Finding the answers and making them understandable is the key to success in most product liability and intellectual property disputes, as well as many commercial contract actions. We work actively with our own experts to develop and oversee testing protocols and experiments designed to bring the truth to the forefront of a legal case.
Medicine: Our Strength
Doctors In Court
Medical device and drug product liability litigation, human clinical trials cases, medical malpractice and personal injury litigation all require a deep understanding of medicine. Very few lawyers possess our depth of medical knowledge.
Some of our lawyers have spent years studying various aspects of medicine, ranging from basic anatomy and physiology to advanced techniques and procedures in orthopedics, neurosurgery, internal medicine, cardiology and oncology.
We work with medical professionals on a regular, ongoing basis to ensure that we have access to the best medical knowledge and experts in the industry.
In addition to an excellent grasp of medicine and life science litigation, we have extensive experience in many areas of health care law, bioethics and related medico-legal subjects. We have litigated issues involving many aspects of medical malpractice, malpractice insurance coverage, hospital staff privileges, medical credentialing disputes (representing both doctors and hospitals in such proceedings), nursing liability, nursing home litigation, right-to-die cases and living will issues. We have even been involved in the design of instructional materials and warning labels for medical devices.
Medical Education For Our Lawyers
The firm’s founding partner, Brett Godfrey, lectures nationally on medico-legal issues, including medicine in trials, human clinical trial litigation, law in bioengineering, medical device litigation and the use of cutting-edge technology in the courtroom.
Nothing can explain medical principles, including anatomy and physiology, to a jury as well as clear, enhanced medical imaging. The image at left depicts a tumor within the brain and intracranial hematoma, the cerebellum, the skull. and associated structures that affect the functioning of the brain. Consider how much more effective a trial presentation is when using graphics of this quality!
Trying to explain these structures to a jury without beautiful, accurate and easily understandable graphic tailor-made to a specific witness’s testimony.
We have the ability, in house, to convert CT and MRI films to 3-dimensional computer models. In one recent case, we used radiographic data from a particular patient’s cranial MRI and CT to build a perfect physical model that we used during a two-week trial in federal court. We have brought medical equipment into courtrooms to demonstrate how it is used.
Graphics: Our Strength
Imagery—A Tool For Understanding
The simple power of pictures and images provide the magic to make simple that which appears complex. A picture is worth a thousand words. We employ the latest developments in the field of information science to convey large amounts of information in a way that jurors, judges and clients can easily understand.
Just as we designed and built this website with no outside assistance to help you understand our capabilities, we design graphic presentations that are often the centerpieces of our presentations at trial.
Customized exhibits make the testimony of expert and lay witnesses much easier to understand and more effective. Most of the exhibits you see on this page were prepared by us, in-house, applying rules of evidence and human perception, to project our theories for maximum understanding and impact.
There may be a pattern to events which, once visible, explains why or how things happened, or the otherwise hidden relationship between events. Visualizing dates, medical treatments, cash flows, mechanical structures and locations on the map all at once can be the key to proving or disproving liability, damages or causation, conflicts of interest, intervening causes or even the intent to deceive. In nearly every case, there is something to be depicted graphically that can be the winning master stroke in your case.
The Spark of Comprehension
We help people understand in their own language, using words, images and video to link facts and events and the meaning of these things together in a way that makes it possible for anyone to understand our case, no matter how complex it may seem on the surface.
At the core of human learning there lies a moment of realization, of comprehension. We call that the “Ahaa!” moment. It is when everything comes together in a flash of comprehension. Our job is to help reach judges, juries and clients achieve this moment, so that they can truly understand the complete picture.
Case Management: Our Strength
Analysis Of Facts And Law
Analyzing cases and developing legal theories is the core of what we do. Our methods are highly refined. The factual details of cases and complexities of law require special analytical tools to optimize our client’s legal position.
Theory Of The Case
From the moment we begin to analyze a case we are developing our “theory of the case,” from which we produce a combination of legal arguments, factual presentations and our compilation of future tasks to be performed, which in turn facilitates the creation of our litigation budgets and comprehensive reports to our clients. Of course, our theory of the case evolves and adapts to events that may alter the optimum solution – developing over time – but we always have a working plan. By operating in this manner, we continuously remain purpose-driven in our handling of your legal matter.
We have spent years developing highly specialized and automated checklists that ensure we do not neglect many of the key activities that are often forgotten by lawyers who handle matters “from the hip” without sophisticated systems, but we realize that these tools are no substitute for intensely creative thinking and planning.
We employ a wide variety of tools to develop strategies and organize facts. From our fluid “mind-mapping” software shown at lower-left, to our highly disciplined and checklist-driven case planning protocol, our wall-sized high-resolution presentation panels (and even a floor-to-ceiling white board running the entire length of our Media Room), our vast array of tools is designed to stimulate creative analysis while carefully tracking crucial details.
Getting Things Done
Tracking deadlines, objectives, tasks, appointments and contacts is essential in litigation. Most firms have software for this, but ours is highly customized for our needs and far more powerful and effective than the packages that even the most advanced firms use. Our customized case management software gives us the ability to electronically link all case information – documents, task lists, contact information, email, research, and notes – in a secure format that we can access remotely from anywhere on laptops, iPads, and mobile phones.
Documents & Data: Our Strength
Our document management system provides state of the art security features that are available in Microsoft’s Sharepoint platform, including 2-factor authentication, unlimited search capabilities and protected data logging. Our system has been customized by top IT professionals to offer redundancy, download and upload alerts to our system administrators.
In discovery disputes with opposing counsel, our forensic activity logging has removed all doubt regarding exactly what opposing counsel has received and when it was viewed or downloaded. Read more about the power of our system in electronic discovery.
Everything Instantly Available
The days of fumbling with boxes of records, endless notebooks with sticky tabs jutting from the edges are gone. With our secure, encrypted servers and our proprietary Legal Eye™ private cloud technology, we have all case documents, videos and research at our fingertips, accessible from anywhere.
Freed from the inefficiency and bulk of paper empowers the legal mind examining vast collections of documents, saving time for true analysis rather than physical juggling of paper. Whether we are trying to rapidly survey a huge compilation simply to obtain a sense of what it contains, or studying every word in a complex document while marking it up for analysis, we have the right tools.
The Searchable Paperless Office
All of the documents we receive, from client files to discovery documents produced by our opponents—even if they arrive in paper form—are made into searchable image text files and stored on our servers according to a disciplined directory system. Our standardized file structure makes locating documents a snap. Reviewing large collections of documents is also much easier. Our high-speed scanners and printers can rapidly convert from paper to image files, and back again, as the needs of a case dictate. All of our staff work on large, high-definition monitors to facilitate document review and management.
Electronic discovery, or e-discovery, is the core of document production in virtually all large-scale commercial disputes, product liability and intellectual property cases. Modern courts place stringent requirements on the parties in these cases, requiring attorneys to be well versed in the new rules and technologies to comply with these evolving demands.
Data Mining, Analytics & Predictive Coding
We have vast experience in developing case-specific means of sifting through massive quantities of electronic and paper evidence. When a case demands it, we develop customized databases, giving us the freedom to design the architecture of the data structure to fit the needs of the dispute. We are also versed in a number of powerful search technologies that assist in finding “needles in a haystack,” locating key exhibits quickly.
Predictive coding allows software to take information entered by people and generalize it to a larger group of documents, making the sorting process less taxing. Using human input, based upon samples of documents marked as relevant or not, a “predictive coding engine” applies that sample criteria across an entire data collection. This is a rapidly growing application in the field of electronic discovery.
Client Access: Our Strength
Access To Your Lawyers And Your Files
What clients really want are answers—and timely reports from lawyers who are accessible. Our clients want to ask questions, and to explain their priorities to lawyers who are truly listening. There is no substitute for high-quality communication, whenever you need it. For this reason, we have linked all of our portable electronic devices (phones, iPads and laptops) directly into our digital network using secure VPN and VOIP protected by secure firewalls and advanced data encryption. You can call our office and be put right through to an attorney who may be thousands of miles away from the office, and if that attorney is unable to accept a call, there is almost always someone else ready to speak with you.
We rapidly produce custom websites to streamline group project management, collaborative document preparation among multiple firms, providing remote access to visually organized data on interactive sites such as the one shown below, which provided secure touch-screen access to pleadings, contracts, insurance, biographical data and the structure of the case, fostering total victory for our client.
Intelligent Electronic Document Management and Organization
Our secure private cloud uses the latest web analytic tools to centralize legal data access in project-centered, easily to navigate web pages that can be viewed on any browser or platform, from any location, with secure, monitored access.
We are often called upon to oversee groups of firms in managing large litigation projects. Group project management requires tracking deadlines, tasks and events across multiple platforms and systems—our private cloud makes coordinating with other firms and with clients a virtual breeze.
Our private cloud includes an SSL encrypted FTP site and Microsoft Office 365 security, which allows clients, opponents, experts and others to have precisely controlled access to entire document repositories.
Without having to maintain files of any kind, our clients can access all the key documents, news, summaries, transcripts, court filings, videos, exhibits and correspondence in a pending case. Our document repositories are fully searchable, indexed with key metadata, and structured into easily navigated views.
Clients and opponents can securely transmit huge electronic files to us and download our production repositories, giving us a record of what was transmitted and when. Delivery time that once was measured in hours or days is now measured in seconds!
Biotechnology: Our Strength
We have extensive experience in handling cases involving human clinical trials, medical devices, pharmaceutical technology, toxicology and bio-engineering. Our knowledge of medicine, engineering and law are fused in this field to create impressive capabilities rivaled by few, if any, law firms.
Aviation: Our Strength
We have tried air crash cases, represented pilots, airlines, airports, fixed-base operators, skydiving facilities and other aerospace businesses.
Brett Godfrey is a former Air Force pilot with nearly 40 years of flight experience, including nearly 800 hours as pilot in command of the Cessna 421 pictured here.
Brett Godfrey’s Golden Eagle 421 returning home after a successful trial in northern Wyoming.