Ronald M. Sandgrund

Ronald M. Sandgrund: Attorney with Burg Simpson Eldredge Hersh & Jardine, P.C. AV stamp icon
Attorney Awards

Biography

Ron Sandgrund is a well-known trial lawyer and Colorado’s most prolific author of articles and books on Colorado construction and materials defect law and related insurance coverage issues. Mr. Sandgrund has extensive experience litigating construction defect, construction materials, product liability, multi-family community, class action, and insurance lawsuits, and he has argued many cases before the Colorado Court of Appeals, Colorado Supreme Court, and U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Sandgrund has received the Best Lawyers in America designation, including Best Lawyers “Lawyer of the Year - Construction Litigation - Denver,” for 2013 and 2019. Mr. Sandgrund files friend-of-the-court (amicus) briefs expressing homeowner-advocacy groups’ views, and federal and state court opinions have referred to his writings many times.

Mr. Sandgrund also lectures to the public and teaches continuing legal education and graduate courses on insurance, construction, and civil liability matters. He is an adjunct professor at the University of Colorado School of Law, where he teaches Philosophy of Entrepreneurship, and lectures on contracts, torts, professional responsibility, trial advocacy and consumer rights. He has written many articles on these same subjects, as well as new lawyer practice guidelines and topical essays for The Colorado Lawyer and the Denver Bar Association’s The Docket. Mr. Sandgrund co-authored with Scott Sullan and Leslie Tuft Residential Construction Law in Colorado, first published in 2005 and updated every two years. This book received the 2011 National Award of Professional Excellence from the Association for Continuing Legal Education. He co-wrote a chapter on residential construction in the multi-volume treatise The Practitioner’s Guide to Colorado Construction Law (Robert Benson, ed.), first published in 1999 and updated bi-annually. Mr. Sandgrund also co-authored with Scott Sullan and Leslie Tuft “Class Counsel’s Professional Responsibilities,” a chapter included in the legal ethics treatise Lawyers’ Professional Liability in Colorado: Preventing Legal Malpractice and Disciplinary Actions (Michael Mihm, ed.), which is updated annually.

Mr. Sandgrund has served on Colorado Bar Association committees regarding inter-professional relations, court reform, and employment law. He was a member of The Colorado Lawyer’s bar journal advisory board from 2011-2017, and was appointed in 2013 to the Colorado Supreme Court’s Committee on Civil Jury Instructions. He testifies frequently on behalf of homeowners before Colorado’s legislature, and he has participated significantly in drafting laws affecting homeowner interests, including Colorado’s Construction Defect Action Reform Act, Homeowner Protection Act and Construction Professional Liability Insurance Act. In 2010, Mr. Sandgrund testified before the Colorado legislature as an expert on construction defect insurance coverage issues in connection with the passage of House Bill 10-1394, a law he helped write and which extends insurance coverage to Colorado homeowners for construction defect damages. Mr. Sandgrund has worked as an expert witness regarding insurance policy compilation and interpretation, and insurance claims handling practices and standards; the reasonableness of class counsel attorney fees and costs; and, a construction litigator’s standard of care.

Mr. Sandgrund jointly wrote “When the Developer Controls the Homeowner Association Board: The Benevolent Dictator?”, a seminal article concerning multi-family development liability published in the January, 2003, The Colorado Lawyer, a Colorado law journal. Journal articles written or co-written by Mr. Sandgrund were selected in 2004-2007, 2009-2013, and 2014-2015 for republication nationwide in Thompson-Reuters’ Legal Handbook for Architects, Engineers and Contractors as reflecting “cutting-edge thinking” in construction litigation.

Mr. Sandgrund served as co-counsel with Scott Sullan in a class action trial resulting in a verdict on all liability issues presented to the jury, a case believed to be the largest residential home expansive soils case ever tried to a jury, and one of the few class lawsuits ever to reach trial in Colorado. Mr. Sandgrund helped negotiate Colorado’s largest homebuilder construction defect related settlement on behalf of more than 12,300 homeowners, and also reached a $32.5 million settlement on behalf of the owners of more than 12,000 homes with defective and leaking windows.

Mr. Sandgrund was managing partner of the Sullan Sandgrund law firm from 1990 until late 2007, became “Of Counsel” to the firm in October 2007, and continues in that capacity today after Sullan Sandgrund’s merger with Burg Simpson. He remains involved in select legal briefing, appellate work, and insurance coverage matters, as well as developing case strategies. Mr. Sandgrund resides with his wife, Cheryl, in Boulder, where, if he is not attending to his practice, he usually is found on a tennis or racquetball court, or on a hiking, skiing, or mountain biking trail (or in his orthopedic surgeon’s office).

Honors & Accolades

2019 Best Lawyers Lawyer of the Year, Litigation-Construction: Denver

Selected to Colorado Super Lawyers, 2012 - 2019

Selected to Best Lawyers in America 2012 - 2014, 2016 - 2019

2014, Awarded Order of the Coif honorarius by the University of Colorado School of Law

Finalist for 2013 William Richey Short Fiction Award

2013 Best Lawyers Lawyer of the Year, Litigation-Construction: Denver

2011 National Award of Professional Excellence (Association for Continuing Education)

Assigned AV Preeminent rating, Martindale-Hubbell (1990-present)

Teaching Positions

Adjunct Professor, Principles of Entrepreneurship, University of Colorado School of Law (2014-2018)

Instructor, Trial Advocacy, University of Colorado School of Law (1994-2004)

Lectures & Seminars

Guest Lecturer, University of Colorado Law School, 2012 - Present (Torts, Contracts, Consumer Empowerment, Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility, Construction Law, Legal Entrepreneurship, and Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Public Policy)

Guest Lecturer, Franklin L Burns School of Real Estate and Construction Management, Daniels College of Business, University of Denver, 2007-2009

Residential Construction Defect Law Update: 2018, Continuing Legal Education of Colorado, 2018

“Hot Topics in Commercial General Liability Insurance Coverage - Liability Coverage for Rip and Tear Damages,” Continuing Legal Education of Colorado, 2018.

“Residential Construction Defect Law Update: 2016,” Continuing Legal Education of Colorado, 2016.

Residential Construction Defect Law Update: 2013, Continuing Legal Education of Colorado, 2013

Recent Case Law and The Anatomy of a Construction Defect Lawsuit, 2012 Continuing Legal Education of Colorado, 2012

Recent Case Law and The Anatomy of a Construction Defect Lawsuit, 2011, Colorado Bar Association and Continuing Legal Education, 2011

Residential Construction Law: Construction Defect and Insurance Law Update and Trends, Continuing Legal Education of Colorado, 2010

Residential Construction Law: Expert Testimony, Useful Life and Extrapolation Evidence, and Liability Insurance, Continuing Legal Education of Colorado, 2008

Residential Construction Law in Colorado, Continuing Legal Education of Colorado, 2005

How to Litigate Claims of Undisclosed Defects in Real Estate Transactions in Colorado: Liability Insurance Coverage for Misrepresentation and Nondisclosure Claims, National Business Institute, 2003

When the Developer Controls the Homeowner Association Board: The Benevolent Capitalist?, Community Associations Institute Convention, 2001

Colorado Construction Law and Liability Insurance Coverage Issues Arising from Faulty Construction, Continuing Legal Education of Colorado, 1999

Minimizing the Risk of Loss to the Survey Professional, Professional Land Surveyors of Denver, 1995

Insurer's Reservation of Its Rights, United States Fidelity & Guaranty Insurance Company, 1994

Tort Liability and Liability Insurance, Boulder County Developmental Disabilities Center, 1988-1991

Practical and Evidentiary Comments on the Use of a Biomechanical Engineer in the Defense of Personal Injury Claims, Otis Elevator Company (United Technologies), 1998

Publications & Media

“Crimes Against Children: Can This Job Crush Your Soul?”

Part I 47 Colorado Lawyer 22 (October 2018)
Part II 47 Colorado Lawyer 19 (November 2018)

“Inherently Dangerous and Ultrahazardous Activities: Standard of Care and Vicarious Liability,” The Colorado Lawyer, Vol. 47, No. 2 (February, 2018).

House Bill 17-1279: New Prerequisites to Homeowner Association Construction Defect Lawsuits, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 46, no. 8 (August-September 2017), coauthored with Jennifer Seidman and Leslie Tuft.

The InQuiring Lawyer Dialogue: So How Does it Feel to Get Sued for Legal Malpractice?

Part I 46 Colorado Lawyer 67 (March 2017)
Part II 46 Colorado Lawyer 59 (April 2017)

Construction Defect Municipal Ordinances: The Balkanization of Tort and Contract Law (Part 3), The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 46, no. 4 (Apr. 2017), coauthored with Jennifer Seidman, Leslie Tuft, and Nelson Boyle.

Construction Defect Municipal Ordinances: The Balkanization of Tort and Contract Law (Part 2), The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 46, No. 3 (March 2017), co-authored with Jennifer Seidman, Leslie Tuft and Nelson Boyle.

Construction Defect Municipal Ordinances: The Balkanization of Tort and Contract Law (Part 1), The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 46, No. 2 (February 2017), co-authored with Jennifer Seidman, Leslie Tuft and Nelson Boyle.

Residential Construction Law in Colorado, (CLE-CBA, Denver 2018, 6th ed.), coauthored with Scott Sullan and Leslie Tuft. First published in 2005, this guide is updated every two years, with the most recent edition published in 2018. This book won the national 2011 Award of Professional Excellence given by the Association for Continuing Legal Education.

Residential Construction, Chapter 14 in the Practitioner's Guide to Colorado Construction Law (Robert Benson, CLE in Colo., Inc., Denver 2018), coauthored with Scott Sullan and Leslie Tuft

Class Action Counsel's Professional Responsibilities, Chapter 37 in Lawyers' Professional Liability in Colorado: Preventing Legal Malpractice and Disciplinary Actions, (Michael T. Mihm ed., CLE in Colo., Inc., Denver, 2018), co-authored with Scott F. Sullan and Leslie Tuft

Residential Construction Defect Litigation (Seattle 2000), coauthored with Scott Sullan

The InQuiring Lawyer Dialogue: Can We Talk? Bias, Diversity, and Inclusiveness in the Colorado Legal Community

Part I Colorado Lawyer Vol. 45, No. 1 (January 2016)
Part II Colorado Lawyer Vol. 45, No. 2 (February 2016)
Part III Colorado Lawyer Vol. 45, No. 3 (March 2016)

The InQuiring Lawyer Dialogue: Does Popular Culture Influence Lawyers, Judges, and Juries?

Part I 44 Colorado Lawyer 55 (January 2015)
Part II 44 Colorado Lawyer 63 (February 2015)
Part III 44 Colorado Lawyer 51 (March 2015)
Part IV 44 Colorado Lawyer 35 (April 2015)

Homebuilders vs. Homeowners: Threats to Shift an Already Tilted Playing Field More in Favor of Homebuilders, The Trial Lawyer, Winter 2015 edition, coauthored with Jennifer Seidman.

Unique Construction Defect Damages Mitigation Issues, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 44, No. 2 (February 2015), coauthored with Jennifer Seidman

TCD and Colorado Pool: The Bogeyman Lurks, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 43, No. 4 (April, 2014).

Greystone and Insurance Coverage for 'Get To' and 'Rip and Tear' Expenses, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 41, no. 3, (2012)

Deconstructing Construction Defect Fault Allocation and Damages Apportionments-Parts I and II, The Colorado Lawyer, coauthored with Jennifer Seidman, vol. 40, nos. 11 and 12 (2011)

Part I 40 Colorado Lawyer 37 (November 2011)
Part II 40 Colorado Lawyer 49 (December 2011)

House Bill 10-1394: New Law Governing Insurance Coverage for Construction Defect Claims, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 39, no. 8 (2010), coauthored with Scott Sullan

Shoddy Work, Negligent Construction and Reconciling the Irreconcilable Under CGL Policies, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 38, no. 11 (2009) coauthored with Harmon Graves and Leslie Tuft

Recovering 'Actual Damages' Under Colorado's Construction Defect Action Reform Act, The Colorado Lawyer, coauthored with Mari Perczak and Leslie Tuft

Part I Colorado Lawyer Vol. 38, No. 5 (May 2009)
Part II Colorado Lawyer Vol. 38, No. 6 (June 2009)

Crossing the Separation of Powers Threshold: Legislative and Regulatory Control of Expert Witness Testimony, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 37, no. 5 (2008) coauthored with Leslie Tuft and Jennifer Seidman

Useful Life Evidence in Construction Defect Cases, The Construction Lawyer, (Amer. Bar Assoc. Forum on the Construction Industry), vol. 27, no. 3 (2007), coauthored with Scott Sullan

The Homeowner Protection Act of 2007, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 36, no. 7 (2007), coauthored with Scott Sullan and Jennifer Seidman

Liability Insurance Coverage for Breach of Contract Damages, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 36, no. 2 (2007), coauthored with Leslie Tuft

Another Perspective on Extrapolation Evidence, Mealey's Litigation Report: Construction Defects, vol. 7, no. 4 (2006), coauthored with Scott Sullan

Yacht Club II: Charting the Shoals of the Economic Loss Rule, Trial Talk, (August-September, 2005)

Theories of Homebuilder Liability for Subcontractor Negligence - Parts I and II, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 34, nos. 6 and 7 (2005), coauthored with Scott Sullan and Joseph Smith

Statutes of Limitations and Repose in Construction Defects Cases, Parts I and II, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 33, nos. 5 and 6 (2005), coauthored with Scott Sullan

The Construction Defect Action Reform Act of 2003, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 32, no. 7 (2004), coauthored with Scott Sullan

The Construction Defect Action Reform Act, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 30, no. 10 (2001), coauthored with Scott Sullan and Marci Achenbach

The Inquiring Lawyer, a periodic article series for The Colorado Lawyer, discussing cutting-edge and edgy issues for lawyers of all stripes (2014-present)

A Dialogue Between Generations, a seven-part article series discussing topics of mutual concern for new and experienced lawyers, The Colorado Lawyer, (November-December, 2012; January-June, 2013)

Your First Expert Witness, Parts I and II, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 40, nos. 5 and 6 (2011)

Your First Deposition, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 36, no. 11 (2007)

(Your First Year) All I Really Needed to Know I Learned as a New Associate, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 33, no. 7, 2004

Duty to Disclose Latent Defects When Selling a Home, National Business Institute (2003)

When the Developer Controls the Homeowner Association Board: The Benevolent Dictator?, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 31, no. 1 (2002), coauthored with Joseph Smith

Colorado Construction Law: Liability Insurance Coverage Issues Arising from Faulty Construction, Continuing Legal Education of Colorado (1999)

The Insurer's Unreasonable Failure to Defend: Enough to Prove Bad Faith?, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 23, no. 5 (1994)

The Lost or Missing Insurance Policy, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 22, no. 6 (1993)

Effects of Violation of C.R.S. 11-43-101 on Out of State Savings and Loan, The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 16, no. 2 (1987), cowritten with Scott Sullan

Explaining the Homeowner Protection Act of 2007, Common Interests Magazine, vol. 25, no. 8 (2007)

The Construction Defect Action Reform Act, Common Interests Magazine, vol. 19, no. 8 (2001)

The Docket, Denver Bar Association, Contributor, 2004-2015

Areas of Practice (3)

  • Construction Defect
  • Product Liability
  • Tort and Insurance Lawsuits

Education & Credentials

University Attended:
State University of New York at Albany, B.A., magna cum laude, 1979
Law School Attended:
University of Colorado School of Law, J.D., 1982
Year of First Admission:
1982
Admission:
Colorado, 1982
Memberships:

Professional Affiliations

Member, Colorado Supreme Court Committee on Civil Jury Instructions, 2013 - Present

The Presidents Seminar (Boulder, CO), 2008-Present

Member, Bar Journal Advisory Board, The Colorado Lawyer, 2011-2016

Birth Information:
East Meadow, New York, November 22, 1957
ISLN:
904053935

Peer Reviews

  • 5.0/5.0 (7 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

    5.0/5.0
  • Analytical Capability

    5.0/5.0
  • Judgment

    4.9/5.0
  • Communication

    4.9/5.0
  • Legal Experience

    5.0/5.0
  • 5.0/5.0 Rated by a Partner on 06/20/14 in Construction Litigation

  • 5.0/5.0 Rated by a Partner on 06/14/14 in Construction Litigation

    I have worked with Ron Sandgrund, twice serving as an expert for his client, and also and as a co-board member of a bar association newsletter. He is extraordinarily thoughtful, bright, and caring - a credit to the profession.

    I have worked with Ron Sandgrund, twice serving as an expert for his client, and also and as a co-board member of a bar association newsletter. He is extraordinarily thoughtful, bright, and caring - a credit to the profession. Read less

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Englewood, Colorado

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