Kayla Scroggins-Uptigrove helps clients successfully navigate complex civil litigation with an emphasis on insurance, commercial, and class action lawsuits at the trial and appellate levels. In her trial work, she has gained significant experience examining expert and fact witnesses, including cross-examination of party-opponents.
Kayla has also drafted winning motions in high-stakes cases, argued extensive motions hearings, and taken key depositions resulting in “walkaway” settlements, helping to avoid financial exposure for her clients.
Kayla earned her law degree from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law, Order of the Coif, and Order of St. Ives. Kayla is listed in Colorado Super Lawyers as a Rising Star and in Best Lawyers in America as part of Ones to Watch for commercial litigation.
- University of Denver Sturm College of Law, 2015 (J.D.), Order of the Coif, Order of St. Ives
- University of Colorado, 2012 (B.A., Mathematics)
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado
- Won a jury verdict against Frank “the Strong Arm” Azar in a bad faith action in Adams County District Court, Colorado in a bellwether trial involving a Nunn agreement and a judgment over 55 times the insurer’s policy limit. “The Strong Arm” tried the case personally. The trial was publicized in the January 2023 issue of 5280 Magazine in an article entitled, “Is Frank Azar Colorado’s Greatest Lawyer?” The jury found in favor of Kayla’s client in approximately two hours.
- Won a complete defense verdict in a five-day jury trial of underinsured motorist bad faith claims in which the plaintiff’s complaint demanded more than $7,000,000 in damages. The jury returned the verdict in one hour, 13 minutes over lunch. Persichette v. Owners Ins. Co., No. 2018-cv-031118, Weld Cty. Dist. Ct., Colo. 2021.
- Won a jury verdict in a bad faith action in Broomfield County District Court, Colorado, for a Fortune 50 insurer in a bellwether trial involving a Nunn agreement and a judgment over 30 times the insurer’s policy limit. The jury found in favor of the client in approximately two hours.
- Won a defense verdict for a Fortune 50 insurer in Denver County District Court, Colorado against a policyholder who had sued for uninsured motorist benefits. The jury found in less than half an hour that the plaintiff had failed to cooperate or comply with the statute of limitations.
- Won a unanimous and nationally significant ruling of first impression from the Colorado Supreme Court on behalf of an insurance adjuster who had been sued personally for statutory double damages. The court put a stop to such abusive lawsuits, ruling that employees of insurance companies cannot be liable personally under Colorado’s double-damages statutes. Skillett v. Allstate and Draine, 505 P.3d 664, Colo. 2022.
- Defeated an attempt by the plaintiff’s bar to weaken dramatically Colorado’s statutory caps on noneconomic damages in personal injury cases. The court rejected the plaintiff’s argument that the entry of a massive jury verdict alone could justify increasing the cap. As a result of the ruling, the client saved approximately $1 million. Pisano v. Manning, 2022 COA 22.
- Won affirmance of a trial victory vacating a $3 million appraisal award because the policyholder-appointed appraiser was partial and biased. The court decided a “novel issue of state law” in the client’s favor, ruling that the partiality of one appraiser requires vacatur of an appraisal award. Owners Ins. Co. v. Dakota Station, 2021 COA 114.
- Won a significant victory before the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation for an insurance company facing an attempt to centralize all federal COVID-19 business-interruption insurance cases.
- Won a groundbreaking ruling from the Colorado Supreme Court requiring insurance appraisers to be fully unbiased and impartial. Owners Ins. Co. v. Dakota Station II Condo. Ass’n, Inc., 443 P.3d 47, 2019.
- Days before trial in this bad faith property lawsuit brought by the Merlin Law Group, the plaintiff dropped all claims and agreed to pay the client’s litigation costs. The client paid nothing. Park Hampden Shopping Ctr., LLC v. Firemen’s Ins. Co. of Washington DC, No. 2017cv32283, Denver Cty. Dist. Ct., Colo. 2021.
- Won summary judgment for a large national insurance company in Colorado District Court. The court ruled that the client owed no duty to defend an underlying copyright infringement lawsuit as a matter of law.
- Won a defense verdict for a Fortune 200 company in a six-day jury trial in Douglas County District Court, Colorado. The plaintiff claimed a traumatic brain injury as a result of being struck with falling merchandise from a retail display and demanded $750,000 in damages.
- Won the first ever summary judgment order within the Tenth Circuit enforcing a large national insurance company’s Telephone Consumer Protection Act exclusions. The court ruled that the client owed no duty to defend an underlying class action as a matter of law.
- Secured a “walk away” dismissal of a multimillion-dollar uninsured motorist insurance lawsuit for bad faith. Only days after filing the insurer’s motion for summary judgment, the plaintiff agreed to drop the lawsuit, and the client paid nothing.
- Defended a national insurance company against allegations of bad faith during its handling of a workers compensation claim. Following depositions of the plaintiff’s treating physicians, the plaintiff agreed to a “walk away” settlement of all bad faith claims.
- Obtained a $100,000 settlement payment and lifting of a campus ban in a pro bono case for a defamed university professor. Kayla demonstrated that the ban was unconstitutional and that the university violated the professor’s rights and defamed him.
- Best Lawyers in America, Ones to Watch, Commercial Litigation, 2021-2024
- Colorado Super Lawyers, Rising Star, Insurance Coverage, 2020-2022
- “Just Win, Baby: The Tenth Circuit Rejects the “Anything Goes” Tactics of the Hail-Litigation Gold Rush,” 96 DENV. L. REV. 267, 2019
- “Insurer Prejudice and Consent to Settle post-Stresscon,” presented at the Colorado Bar Association’s Hot Topics in Commercial General Liability Insurance Coverage, October 27, 2016