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Kurt Zaner

Mr. Zaner is a zealous advocate for his clients, drawing on a unique collection of legal and non-traditional experience, all of which benefits his clients. He is a sought after international speaker based on his winning trial techniques, effective legal writing strategies, and iconic discovery tactics that force top value settlements. He is a published author of federal case law in the area of worker’s rights, Colorado case law establishing the right to punitive damages for victims of drunk drivers, and legal articles on distracted driving as well as ancient Roman trial methods. Finally, and is an experienced stage actor. He has dedicated his legal career to representing folks against the modern day Goliaths. In battling corporations that refuse to take responsibility, Mr. Zaner enjoys the challenge of standing up for people that seemingly have the odds overwhelmingly stacked against them.

Mr. Zaner has spent his career honing his craft as a trial lawyer in order to even the playing field for his clients. After graduating law school near the top of his class and receiving the American Bar Association’s and American Law Institute’s Best Graduate Award – awarded to the one student of the graduating class who best represents a combination of scholarship and leadership – Mr. Zaner went on to clerk for United States District Judge Ken Marra. Working side by side with a Federal Judge on one of the largest caseloads in the country, Mr. Zaner learned the art of persuasive advocacy both through legal writing and courtroom theatrics. Most importantly, he learned how cases are won from behind the bench.

Prior to co-founding Zaner Harden Law, Mr. Zaner practiced with some of the best-known trial lawyers in the country. In Florida, Mr. Zaner worked on the most complex of cases that resulted in a multi-billion dollar settlement. In Colorado, Mr. Zaner has successfully represented hundreds of clients across the State of Colorado, trying and winning cases at every level of Colorado State Court. He has won several million and multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements for his clients in Colorado. Prior to his latest 1,700,000.00 verdict against an oil company’s distracted driver, he landed on the front page of the Denver Post for a $2,500,000 verdict against a drunk driver that killed his client’s son and then fled the scene. He defended this verdict all the way to the Colorado Supreme Court, creating case law that benefits the victims of drunk drivers. He has also appeared on Good Morning America, ABC World News Tonight, and nearly all of the local Denver News Channels. No matter how big or small the case, Mr. Zaner takes great pride in helping those that entrust their most significant legal problems to his law firm.

Mr. Zaner is very active in the Trial Lawyer Community, both locally and nationally, to ensure that he is current with cutting edge trial techniques and case strategies to benefit his clients. Locally, Mr. Zaner was recently elected to the Board of the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association (CTLA) and appointed to the Executive Committee. He also serves as a certified End Distracted Driving (EndDD Program) presenter for CTLA – Mr. Zaner has donated his time in high school classrooms in Colorado educating the next generation of drivers on the dangers of distracted driving. Nationally, Mr. Zaner was recently elected President of the New Lawyers Division for the American Association of Justice. As President, Mr. Zaner will lead the 5,000 member NLD division of the most pre-eminent national trial lawyer organization in the Country.

Mr. Zaner is invited to speak across the country on novel legal strategies and methods that he has developed – techniques that have resulted in unprecedented successful results for his clients. In 20015 he served as a Faculty member at the AAJ winter national convention in Palm Springs, educating his colleagues on how to win their case in just a page and a half. The following summer in he spoke as Faculty in Montreal at the Annual Convention on Jury Selection. In the summer of 2016 he spoke in Los Angeles at the Annual Convention on Aggressive Settlement Strategies and this past summer (2017) he taught other lawyers at the national convention in Boston how to prepare their clients for deposition.

On the state level, he was invited to speak at the prestigious Arkansas Trial Lawyers College on opening statements; there, he transplanted 2,000-year-old trial techniques from the Roman trial lawyer Cicero and showed how they can be effective in today’s courts. Mr. Zaner is also a regular speaker at the Colorado Trial Lawyers annual conventions and seminars.

Finally, Mr. Zaner has been designated a Super Lawyer a recognition for the top 2.5 percent of lawyers in Colorado. He has also been recognized as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer in Colorado by The National Trial Lawyers, an invitation-only organization comprised of the most celebrated trial lawyers across the country; membership is offered to the select few in each state who demonstrate superior qualifications of leadership, reputation, influence, stature, and public profile. Mr. Zaner has also been recognized as a Top 40 Trial Lawyer Under the Age of 40 by The National Trial Lawyers, a limited invitation extended exclusively to lawyers under the age of 40 in each State that embody the highest standard of trial advocacy and leadership. Mr. Zaner consistently maintains a 10.0 SUPERB rating with AVVO, an attorney rating system that considers a lawyer’s practice, professional achievements and industry recognition. Finally, he was awarded the prestigious Top Lawyer by 5280 in 2017, an award bestowed on only 14 personal injury lawyers in the State of Colorado.

When not practicing law, Mr. Zaner spends much of his time with his wife, outdoors in the mountains or on the stage in a local theater production.

Licensed in Florida and Colorado.

Publications

Bar Leadership

National

  • American Association of Justice – Elected National President  of NLD Division 2016.
  • American Association of Justice – Elected National Vice President  of NLD Division 2016.
  • American Association of Justice – Elected National Treasurer of NLD Division 2015.
  • American Association of Justice – Elected National Secretary of NLD Division 2014.
  • American Association of Justice – Appointed Board of Governor on New Lawyers Division, June 2013.
  • American Association of Justice – Appointed Chair of the Publications Committee for the NLD quarterly national publication, the Sidebar, July 2013.

State

  • Colorado Trial Lawyer’s Association – Elected to serve on Board as Board Member 2016-17.
  • Colorado Trial Lawyer’s Association – Appointed to serve on Executive Committee and Legislative Committee  2016-17
  • Colorado Trial Lawyer’s Association – Appointed to serve on Board as Board Member 2015-16.
  • Colorado Trial Lawyer’s Association – Appointed Membership Chair November 2012 -2015.
  • Colorado Trial Lawyer’s Association – Appointed New Lawyer Chair November 2013.

Community Involvement

  • Actor (Len), A One Night Stand at the Vintage Theater, Don’t Throw the Cheese by Mark Ogle.
  • Actor (Reverend Parris), The Crucible at Red Rocks Community Theater.
  • Presenter, End Distracted Driving Campaign; presents programs to high school students to warn them of the dangers of distracted driving.
  •  Director, Board of Directors, Denver Athletic Club.

Education

University of Florida, Levin College of Law

  • Magna Cum Laude
  • Order of the Coif (Graduated Top 7%)
  • University of Florida Law Review, Board Member
  • Recipient of ABA and ALI Best Graduate Award
  • Outstanding Graduate Award, UF Trial Team
  • Vice President, Florida Blue Key

University of Florida, B.A.

  • Cum Laude, Roman History
  • Phi Beta Kappa

Clerkship

  • Federal Law Clerk to United States District Judge Kenneth A. Marra in the Southern District of Florida.

Recognition

Bar Admissions

  • State of Florida
  • Federal Southern District of Florida
  • State of Colorado
  • Colorado Federal District Court

Speaking Engagements

National

  • American Association of Justice – Featured Speaker at National Summer Convention 2017 in Boston – “Preparing your Client to Win at Deposition”.
  • Arkansas Trial Lawyer College – Featured Speaker – “Opening Statements based on Rhetoric tools of Cicero and the Greeks“.
  • American Association of Justice – Featured Speaker at National Summer Convention 2016 in Los Angeles – “Settlement Strategies: The Best Defense is a Good Offense“.
  • American Association of Justice – Featured Speaker at National Summer Convention 2015 in Montreal – “Overcoming Gender, Age, and Cultural Bias in Jury Selection“.
  • American Association of Justice – Featured Speaker at National Winter Convention 2015 in Palm Springs – “How to Win Your Case in a Page and a Half“.

Colorado

  • 2016 Sterling’s Seminar Personal Injury Law: From Start to Finish,  Featured SpeakerSettlement and Negotiation Strategies”.
  • Colorado Plaintiff’s Employment Law Annual Convention 2016 – Featured Speaker  “How to Win Your Case in a Page and a Half”.
  • Colorado Trial Lawyers Association – Featured Speaker at Annual Blockbuster Convention 2017 – “Discovering your way to a Great Settlement”.
  • Colorado Trial Lawyers Association – Featured Speaker at Annual Blockbuster Convention 2016 – “How to Win Your Case in a Page and a Half”.
  • Colorado Trial Lawyers Association– Featured Speaker at Summer Convention 2015 – “How to Win Your Case in a Page and a Half”.