John Vaught's practice emphasizes complex insurance defense, including class actions, securities fraud class actions, corporate governance issues, liability and director and officer insurance disputes, trade secrets, intellectual property, commercial, and antitrust matters.  In addition, John has substantial litigation, mediation, and trial experience in the federal courts and in Colorado and Missouri involving complex commercial litigation, including the defense of class action litigation. His appellate experience includes the Tenth Circuit and the Colorado Supreme Court, as well as courts of appeals in Colorado and Missouri. John has successfully defeated every motion for class certification (other than settlement classes) in the dozens of major class actions he has handled involving insurance, securities fraud, and consumer products.

In 2013, John was selected by USAA as one of the company's two national counsel in the United States. He leads the WTO team that oversees the defense of all automobile insurance cases in every jurisdiction in the country involving personal injury protection and medical payments coverage.
Other Experience
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, LLP, Partner
Holland & Hart LLP, Partner
Legal Memberships, Activities, and Honors
Best Lawyers in America
    Commercial Litigation, 2007-2015
    Insurance Law, 2007-2015
    Securities Litigation, 2014-2015
Colorado Super Lawyers
    
Business Litigation, 2014
    Appellate, 2012-2013
    Class Action/Mass Torts, 2006-2011
    Colorado Top 100, 2013
    Colorado Top 50, 2008, 2010
Best of the Bar, Denver Business Journal
    Commercial Litigation, 2005
Benchmark Litigation
    Appellate - Colorado, 2014
Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent Peer Review Rated 
Denver Bar Association
    President, 2014-2015
    President-Elect, July 2013-2014
    First Vice President, 2012-2013
    First Vice President-Elect., 2011-2012
    Member, Board of Trustees, 2012-2015
    Member, Three Person Executive Committee
    Host Committee, DBA Barrister's Ball, 2012-2014
    Board Member, Barrister's Benefit Ball Fundraising Committee, 2013-2014
    Member, Nominating Committee, 1989, 2013, 2014
    Chairman, Young Lawyers' Section, 1984
    Member, Board of Governors, 1984-1985; 2000-2002, 2012-2015
American Bar Association
    Colorado and Wyoming Representative to the Executive
        Committee, ABA Young Lawyers' Division, 1984-1985
Colorado Lawyers for Colorado Veterans
    Chair, 2012-2014
Colorado Bar Association
    Member, Board of Governors, 2000-2002, 2012-2014
    Member Liaison and Budget Committee, Colorado Bar Association and Denver Bar Association 2012-2014
    Founding Chair, CBA Military & Veterans Affairs Section, 2012-present
    Co-Chair, Colorado Lawyers for Colorado Veterans Committee, 2012-present
    Standing Committee for CBA Mentoring Program, 2012-present
    Member, Budget Committee, 2011, 2014
    Member, Task Force on Multidisciplinary Practice, 1999
    Nominee, Young Lawyer of the Year, 1984
    Founder and former Chairman, Securities Litigation Subsection of Litigation Section, 1993-1996
    Reporting Liaison, Chief Justice's Commission on Civil Justice
Colorado Bar Foundation
    Fellow
    Member, Board of Trustees, 2013-2014
    Member, Board of Directors and Treasurer, 2012-2015
Defense Research Institute
Reporting Liaison, Chief Justice's Commission on Civil Justice
    Reporting Member, 2013
Mentor Pilot Program
    Standing Committee, 2011-present
Tenth Circuit Judicial Conference
    Member, 1984-present
    Committee Member, Program and Host Committee, 1998
National Institute for Trial Advocacy
    Faculty Member, 1992-present
    Appointed Member, International Faculty, 1999
University of Colorado Trial Advocacy Program
    Faculty Member, 1990-1991
St. Mary's University School of Law Alumni Association
    Member, Board of Directors, 1992-1994
St. Mary's University School of Law commencement speaker, May 2013

Teaching Positions
National Institute for Trial Advocacy
    Faculty, 1992-Present
    International Faculty
University of Colorado Trial Advocacy Program
Lecturer on the history of the Vietnam War
Representative Cases Insurance Insurance Insurance Class Actions Insurance Class Actions
  • Successfully represented numerous insurance companies in approximately 25 purported class actions filed on behalf of all Colorado policyholders regarding extended personal injury protection coverage and related bad faith allegations.
  • Successfully won summary judgment in favor of USAA based on a plaintiff's lack of standing regarding the contractual time limitation for medical payments coverage.
  • Represent USAA in a class action on appeal regarding denial of class certification in a UM/UIM rate case.
  • Successfully represented USAA in a purported class action involving the alleged failure to offer extended personal injury protection (APIP) to its member in violation of the Colorado PIP statute.
  • Served as principal counsel to Allstate Insurance Company for class action litigation in Colorado. Successfully represented Allstate in a purported nationwide class action relating to its customer service and quality pledge programs.
  • Served as principal counsel to Allstate Insurance Company in purported class actions and non-class cases involving the alleged failure to properly offer extended PIP coverage to all its insureds in Colorado and regarding UM/UIM, motorcycle PIP coverage, and diminished value litigation. WTO attorneys successfully defended approximately 100 APIP cases for Allstate entities.
  • Successfully represented County Mutual Insurance Company in a purported Colorado class action relating to automobile coverage and premium pricing.
  • Successfully represented Security Life of Denver before the Colorado Supreme Court and in federal court in matters involving the Colorado Consumer Protection Act.
  • Served as class action counsel to Aetna and Aetna US Healthcare in alleged class litigation filed throughout the United States, including a class challenge to a nationwide HMO system of healthcare.
  • Served as principal counsel to Aetna Health Plans in statewide class litigation in Colorado over alleged violations involving coordination of benefits with Colorado automobile no-fault carriers.
  • Served as Colorado class action counsel to Liberty Mutual and Zurich Insurance relating to alleged improper payment to Colorado healthcare providers for treatment of workers' compensation patients.
  • Served as Colorado counsel to Tenet Healthcare in actions alleging psychiatric false imprisonment by mental health facilities operating in Colorado.
  • Served as defense counsel to Allied Insurance in a purported class action involving the alleged under-payment of PIP benefits.
Securities and Consumer Fraud Class Actions Securities and Consumer Fraud Class Actions
  • Retained in March 2010 to advise outside directors in sections 11 and 10b securities fraud class action in the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado.
  • Represented Amdura Corporation in sections 11 and 10b securities fraud/shareholder class litigation.
  • Represented American Airlines & AMR in class actions involving jet fuel and Avgas tax and baggage handling equipment at Denver International Airport.
  • Represented Seymour Cray and Cray Computer Corp. in section 10b securities fraud/shareholder class litigation over the development of the Cray III supercomputer.
  • Represented Burt Buick Pontiac GMC Truck in a statewide class action with review sought in the U.S. Supreme Court involving the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, including right to privacy issues.
  • Represented Citicorp Diners Club in a nationwide class action against all officers and enlisted personnel in the U.S. Air Force relating to purported fraud in the Diners Club frequent flyer and cardmember bonus programs.
  • Represented Quovadx Corporation in section 10b securities fraud/shareholder litigation over the exchange offer with Rogue Wave Corporation.
  • Represented Meredith Corporation in securities fraud/franchise class litigation.
  • Represented Costco predecessor Pace Membership Warehouse in section 10b securities fraud/shareholder class litigation.
  • Represented Texaco in a nationwide class action filed by all female employees.
  • Represented Whirlpool and Sears in a nationwide consumer fraud class action involving a microwave oven recall.
Appeals Appeals
  • Represented Security Life of Denver Insurance Company before the Colorado Supreme Court in an appeal of a critical Colorado Consumer Protection Act issue.
  • Represented a member of the U-Haul family before the Colorado Court of Appeals.
Other Relevant Experience Other Relevant Experience
  • Represented Vestas in litigation involving wind energy systems.
  • Represented Chrysler Group LLC in Oregon involving dealership arbitrations following Chrysler LLC's bankruptcy in 2010.
Bar and Court Admissions
  • Colorado
  • Texas (Inactive)
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • Numerous pro hac vice admissions
Other ExperienceGibson, Dunn & Crutcher, LLP, Partner
Holland & Hart LLP, Partner
Teaching PositionsNational Institute for Trial Advocacy
    Faculty, 1992-Present
    International Faculty
University of Colorado Trial Advocacy Program
Lecturer on the history of the Vietnam War
Legal Memberships, Activities, and Honors
Best Lawyers in America
    Commercial Litigation, 2007-2015
    Insurance Law, 2007-2015
    Securities Litigation, 2014-2015
Colorado Super Lawyers
    
Business Litigation, 2014
    Appellate, 2012-2013
    Class Action/Mass Torts, 2006-2011
    Colorado Top 100, 2013
    Colorado Top 50, 2008, 2010
Best of the Bar, Denver Business Journal
    Commercial Litigation, 2005
Benchmark Litigation
    Appellate - Colorado, 2014
Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent Peer Review Rated 
Denver Bar Association
    President, 2014-2015
    President-Elect, July 2013-2014
    First Vice President, 2012-2013
    First Vice President-Elect., 2011-2012
    Member, Board of Trustees, 2012-2015
    Member, Three Person Executive Committee
    Host Committee, DBA Barrister's Ball, 2012-2014
    Board Member, Barrister's Benefit Ball Fundraising Committee, 2013-2014
    Member, Nominating Committee, 1989, 2013, 2014
    Chairman, Young Lawyers' Section, 1984
    Member, Board of Governors, 1984-1985; 2000-2002, 2012-2015
American Bar Association
    Colorado and Wyoming Representative to the Executive
        Committee, ABA Young Lawyers' Division, 1984-1985
Colorado Lawyers for Colorado Veterans
    Chair, 2012-2014
Colorado Bar Association
    Member, Board of Governors, 2000-2002, 2012-2014
    Member Liaison and Budget Committee, Colorado Bar Association and Denver Bar Association 2012-2014
    Founding Chair, CBA Military & Veterans Affairs Section, 2012-present
    Co-Chair, Colorado Lawyers for Colorado Veterans Committee, 2012-present
    Standing Committee for CBA Mentoring Program, 2012-present
    Member, Budget Committee, 2011, 2014
    Member, Task Force on Multidisciplinary Practice, 1999
    Nominee, Young Lawyer of the Year, 1984
    Founder and former Chairman, Securities Litigation Subsection of Litigation Section, 1993-1996
    Reporting Liaison, Chief Justice's Commission on Civil Justice
Colorado Bar Foundation
    Fellow
    Member, Board of Trustees, 2013-2014
    Member, Board of Directors and Treasurer, 2012-2015
Defense Research Institute
Reporting Liaison, Chief Justice's Commission on Civil Justice
    Reporting Member, 2013
Mentor Pilot Program
    Standing Committee, 2011-present
Tenth Circuit Judicial Conference
    Member, 1984-present
    Committee Member, Program and Host Committee, 1998
National Institute for Trial Advocacy
    Faculty Member, 1992-present
    Appointed Member, International Faculty, 1999
University of Colorado Trial Advocacy Program
    Faculty Member, 1990-1991
St. Mary's University School of Law Alumni Association
    Member, Board of Directors, 1992-1994
St. Mary's University School of Law commencement speaker, May 2013
Government ServiceLaw Clerk to The Honorable Robert H. McWilliams, United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
United States Navy, Lieutenant
    During the Vietnam war he served with the Naval Advisory Group, ISB Cho Moi, Republic of Vietnam, and later served as Department Head with the U.S. Naval Communications Station, Italy.
Articles/Presentations
  • "What Was the Cause of the Vietnam War," presented at a CBA and Military & Veterans Affairs Section reception hosted by WTO, (May 30, 2013).
  • "The Compulsory Arbitration Clause and Federal Claims for Relief," presented at the Network Trial Law Firms' Litigation Management: FINRA CLE SuperCourse, (September 14, 2012).
  • "How Recent Supreme Court Decisions Will Shape Future Class Actions," presented to the Association for Corporate Counsel Colorado Chapter, (March 8, 2012).
  • "The Use of Arbitration Clauses to Prevent Class Certification," presented to The Network of Trial Lawyers, (2010).
  • "Top Ten Developments in Securities Litigation," presented at Securities Subsection of the Colorado Bar Association, (November 1998/October 2010).
  • "Arbitration Clauses and Class Certification," presented to the Association of Corporate Counsel Colorado Chapter, (June 26, 2008).
  • "Closing Arguments," presented to National Institute for Trial Advocacy, (2001-2004, 2006-2010).
  • "Recent Developments Under Rule 23," presented at The Network of Trial Law Firms, (April 2003).
  • "Jury Selection or Jury Exclusion: A Short Lesson in Effective Voir Dire," presented at National Institute for Trial Advocacy, (August 2001).
  • "Opening Statements," presented at National Institute for Trial Advocacy, (August 1999).
  • "Making Expert Witness Testimony Persuasive," presented at National Institute for Trial Advocacy, (August 1998).
  • "Will Rule 23 Stand in the Way of an Otherwise Fair Class Action Settlement?" Tort & Ins. L.J., (1998).
Education
  • St. Mary's University School of Law, J.D., summa cum laude, 1978
    St. Mary's Law Journal, Associate Editor
    Outstanding Commercial Law Graduate
  • Stephen F. Austin State University, B.S., Business and Economics, 1969
    Student Body President, 1968-1969

Government ServiceLaw Clerk to The Honorable Robert H. McWilliams, United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
United States Navy, Lieutenant
    During the Vietnam war he served with the Naval Advisory Group, ISB Cho Moi, Republic of Vietnam, and later served as Department Head with the U.S. Naval Communications Station, Italy.

Bar and Court Admissions
  • Colorado
  • Texas (Inactive)
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • Numerous pro hac vice admissions

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