Katherine Kelley Otto

Katherine Kelley Otto: Attorney with Messner Reeves LLP AV stamp icon
Attorney Awards


KATHERINE OTTO works in the New York and Colorado offices for Messner Reeves, LLP. Her practice is primarily devoted to the defense of licensed healthcare professionals in malpractice cases or disciplinary matters, but she also defends complex or catastrophic personal injury claims and lawsuits.

Katherine is a trial attorney with experience in all aspects of civil litigation, including trial to jury verdicts in both state and federal courts. She represents licensed healthcare professionals of all backgrounds and expertise before various healthcare Boards and in administrative and regulatory proceedings at the state and federal level. She is a zealous advocate in the courtroom and beyond, and effective and frequent communication with her clients is a top priority. Above all, Katherine is committed to identifying creative solutions to the issues a healthcare provider faces when confronted with a claim, lawsuit or disciplinary investigation that are sustainable long-term.

In addition to her healthcare practice, Katherine has served the Colorado Defense Lawyers Association in a leadership role for over six years. Her current Board of Directors position is Communications Director. She frequently teaches Continuing Legal Education courses to her colleagues and peers on topics specific to her practice, and gives presentations to healthcare providers and entities on risk management and compliance issues. Katherine also provides pro- bono representation to military veterans in pursuit of service-connected benefits for physical and mental conditions.

She was named to the Colorado Super Lawyers Rising Stars list annually since 2014 in the area of Personal Injury - Medical Malpractice: Defense, Personal Injury - General: Defense and Civil Litigation: Defense.

Prior to joining Messner Reeves, Katherine was an attorney at a national law firm for 9 years, which she joined after completion of a one-year judicial clerkship in Colorado's 18th Judicial District.

Prior Professional Experience

Attorney, McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney & Carpenter, LLP 2008 - 2017

Judicial Clerk, Honorable Gerald J. Rafferty, Eighteenth Judicial District, State of Colorado, 2007 - 2008


The Lack of Insurance Coverage and Reimbursement for Medical Marijuana, J. Zen Jackson and K. Otto, M.D. Advisor,10.18.2013


Listed in Super Lawyers Rising Stars (2014-2018), a Thomson Reuters business, in the area of Personal Injury - Medical Malpractice: Defense, Personal Injury - General: Defense and Civil Litigation: Defense.

Areas of Practice (1)

  • Litigation

Education & Credentials

Contact Information:
(646) 595-1102  Phone
(303) 623-0552  Fax
University Attended:
University of Northern Colorado, B.A., cum laude, 2004
Law School Attended:
University of Denver College of Law, J.D., 2007
Year of First Admission:
Accredited Attorney, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs; 2007, Colorado; 2017, New York


Board of Directors, Communications Director, Colorado Defense Lawyers Association -2014 - Present
American Bar Association - 2007 - Present
Association of Healthcare Risk Management of New York, 2017 - Present
Colorado Bar Association - 2007 - Present
Defense Research Institute - 2015 - Present
Denver Bar Association - 2007 - Present
Medical Malpractice Committee, Vice-Chair, Colorado Defense Lawyers Association -2013-2014
Member, Colorado Pledge to Diversity Committee - 2014 - Present
Membership Committee Chair, Colorado Defense Lawyers Association - 2011-2014
Metro Volunteer Lawyers - 2009-2010
New York City Bar Association 2017 - Present
New York State Medical Defense Bar Association 2017 - Present
Women in the Law Subcommittee - 2016 - Present

Reported Cases:
Representative Cases: Foster et al. v. Structual Integrity Associates, Inc. et al., No. 12CA0402 (Colo. App. Div. 6 2013) (cert. denied); Alice Casias v. Interstate Brands Corp. and Ace American Ins. Co., W.C. No.4-740-818-02 (I.C.A.O. 2013); David Cortese v. Kaiser Space Products and Home Insurance Co. c/o Colorado Insurance Guaranty Association, W.C. No. 4-171-138 (I.C.A.O. 2010); Barnett v. Elite Prop. of America, Inc., 252 P.3d 14 (Colo. App. Div. 2 2010) (cert. denied); Clements DPM v. Davies DPM, 217 P.3d 912 (Colo. App. 2009) (cert. denied); Holly Hand v. Peterson Contractors Excavation, Inc. W.C. No. 4-392-766 (I.C.A.O. 2009);Ambassador, Project Angelheart (501(c)(3))- 2005 -Present

Peer Reviews

  • 4.9/5.0 (15 reviews)
  • High ethical standing icon
  • A Martindale-Hubbell Peer Rating reflects a combination of achieving a Very High General Ethical Standards rating and a Legal Ability numerical rating.
  • Legal Knowledge

  • Analytical Capability

  • Judgment

  • Communication

  • Legal Experience


See All 15 Reviews »

*Peer Reviews provided before April 15, 2008 are not displayed.

Denver, Colorado

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