Limit Increased For Non-Attorney Representation of Closely Held Business Entities in Colorado Litigation

Jun 24, 2013

By Reed Morris

Colorado business owners should be aware that corporate entities including LLCs generally require attorney representation when the company is bringing or defending actions in court or before an administrative body. Recognizing the costs to small businesses in litigation, the Colorado General Assembly provided a narrow exception to this rule in 1991 allowing non-attorney officers of closely held businesses to represent their company in court without an attorney if the matter did not exceed $10,000 in controversy.

This spring, Governor John Hickenlooper signed House Bill 13-1052 into law [.pdf] increasing the limit for officer representation to $15,000 beginning on the bill’s effective date. The threshold of $15,000 is equal to the jurisdictional limit for matters that may be heard in Colorado county courts, allowing companies wishing to pursue such matters without legal counsel the ability to fully utilize the county court system. The county courts generally provide a more efficient and less onerous process compared to the district court. This is mainly accomplished though limiting pretrial litigation and discovery. If a matter is under $7,500, Colorado small claims courts provide businesses with an even more streamlined forum to seek judicial relief.

Closely held business entities are defined in Colo. Rev. Stat. §13-1-127(1)(a) as entities “with no more than three owners.” A non-attorney corporate officer may proceed in court or administrative hearing after providing satisfactory evidence of authority to appear on behalf of the closely held entity. 

Business owners considering representing their company in court should still consult an attorney relating to the law, procedures, and presentation of their case in court. Even though Colorado law allows non-attorney officers to represent their closely held company, this exception to the rule does not mean that standards of law and practice will be relaxed. Proceeding to court with or without an attorney is not a decision to be taken lightly. Limited and carefully defined attorney representation for your company may make business sense depending on the complexity and stakes of the case.


Mallon & Lonnquist, LLC, is a business and real estate law firm. Reed F. Morris is a Colorado business and real estate litigation attorney with Mallon & Lonnquist, based in Denver, Colorado. Reed regularly represents businesses and individuals in disputes from pre-filing through trial and can be reached at  

Category: M&L Legal Posts

Category List

Tag List

Alternative Dispute Resolution (5)
Denver Colorado Business Attorney (9)
CO Business Non-Solicitation Restrictions (1)
St. Anthony, Minnesota (1)
Mergers & Acquisitions (5)
Commercial Property (1)
Labor (3)
Snowboard Gear (1)
Spanish Speaking Lawyers Committee (1)
Colorado Judicial Institute (1)
Construction Contracts (5)
Leases (4)
Employment Law (1)
Colorado Lis Pendens (1)
Credit Card Data (1)
Trade Secrets (6)
Mechanic's Liens (1)
Finance Law (2)
Our Courts Colorado (1)
CO Attorney Mentoring Program (1)
courts (1)
Non-Solicitiation (1)
Co-Ownership Agreement (1)
Spanish Business Law (9)
Colorado Real Estate (11)
LLC Law (2)
Property Surveys (1)
Litigation (15)
Non-Disclosure (1)
Non-Compete, Colorado non-compete restrictions, enforcing non-compete, protecting Colorado business (1)
Resolving Business Disputes (1)
CO Ski and Snowboard Gear Recall (1)
Non-Solicitation (1)
Colorado Spanish Legal Services (1)
Real Estate Law Firm (3)
Data Breach Settlement (1)
Panelist (1)
Enforcing Non-Solicitation Agreement (1)
Colorado Foundation for Water Education (1)
Ethics (1)
Overtime Wages (2)
Data Breach (2)
Colorado Hispanic Bar Association (1)
Colorado attorney mentor (1)
Denver Business Law (1)
subcontractor negotiations (2)
ABA Article (1)
Denver Real Estate (1)
Colorado Retail Leasing (1)
Colorado Enforcement of Non-Compete (2)
Colorado business disputes (1)
Community (29)
attorney-client privilege (2)
Arbitration (2)
cyber security (3)
Research (1)
Non-Compete (2)
Master Services Agreement (2)
Real Estate (4)
Non-Competition Agreements (12)
Denver Business Journal (2)
Construction (6)
Commercial Real Estate (2)
cause for termination (1)
Denver Sustainable Law Firm (1)
Reed Morris (1)
Employment (3)
Spanish Legal Services (7)
Colorado Courts (1)
Cherry Creek Chamber of Commerce (1)
Skiing Gear (1)
Certifiably Green Denver (1)
Denver Broncos (1)
American Bar Association (2)
Colorado at-will employment (1)
Wrongful Death Settlement (1)
Colorado Wrongful Death (1)
indemnifications (2)
Colorado LLC (1)
Lease Negotiations (1)
Construction Bond Claims (2)
Colorado Construction (1)
ABA (1)
Colorado Business (56)
Denver arbitration (1)
Business Contracts (1)
Helmet Recall (1)
Colorado Employment (20)
Corporate Law (8)