Drake Law Firm, P.C.

Drake Law Firm, P.C.

The Drake Law Firm, P.C., is a high quality, litigation-oriented team of lawyers and support staff located in Helena, Montana.

Firm Overview

We offer extensive local knowledge and courtroom experience to our clients. We emphasize personal, close attention to all of our cases, whether we represent you as a claimant seeking recovery or a defendant protecting yourself against a claim. We understand that being on either side of a lawsuit can be a difficult and overwhelming experience. We will help you through that experience with both empathy and tenacity.

Our expertise, dedication, and personal touch lead to the best results for our clients. We consistently obtain success for our clients at trial, in mediation, and, if necessary, at the Montana Supreme Court. We have expertise in many areas, including all types of accidents and injuries, insurance disputes, wrongful death, and defective products. Please call us for a personal meeting.

Founded in 2005, the Drake Law Firm, P.C. is one of Western Montana's leading law firms providing a wide array of legal services:

-Civil Litigation-Plaintiff and Defense
-Insurance Defense
-Personal Injury
-Insurance Coverage
-Bad Faith
-Products Liability
-Human Rights Commission Complaints-Plaintiff and Defense
-Labor and Employment
-Arbitration and Mediation
-Business and Commercial
-Construction
-Conservatorships and Guardianships

The Drake Law Firm PC, provides creative, ethical and effective solutions to our clients' legal problems.

While we work to avoid the expense of unnecessary litigation through binding arbitration and aggressive mediation, we are also prepared to vigorously defend our clients against unfounded claims using all the experience, staff, and resources available to us.
Main Office

Main Office
111 North Last Chance Gulch, Suite 3J, Arcade Building
Helena  MT  59601

Phone
  • 406-495-8080
Auto Accident
The Drake Law Firm PC, provides creative, ethical and effective solutions to our clients' legal problems.
The law office of Drake Law will represent you auto accident legal matters.

Curt Drake

Helena native Curt Drake emphasized defense practice at a larger firm for approximately 20 years before opening his own firm in 2005. Mr. Drake has tried approximately 30 personal injury cases, including cases of catastrophic injury. He has been selected to the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), an invitation-only organization which limits its membership to 2% of Montana lawyers. He has also been selected as a Western Region Super Lawyer. Curt has had successful litigation in numerous Montana State District Courts, the Montana Supreme Court, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the U.S. Supreme Court.

CASES
Patch v. Hillerich & Bradsby/Louisville Slugger, L&C County District Court 2009, MT Supreme Court 2011, 2011 MT 175 $850,000 verdict for family of American Legion pitcher killed by ball hit by aluminum baseball bat. Achieved Montana Supreme Court decision affirming the jury's verdict

Holdren v. Falls Construction (Great Falls, MT 2010) $1.04 Million verdict for truck driver injured in construction accident

Chriske v. State of Montana Dept. of Correction, MT Supreme Court 2010, 357 Mont. 28 Achieved summary judgment order for the State of Montana and successfully defended the State of Montana in Montana Supreme Court appeal of that order.

City of Dillon v. Montana Mun. Ins. Company, Montana Supreme Court 2009, 353 Mont. 370 Appealed District Court Order against client MMIA and achieved Supreme Court Opinion in favor of client.

Thain v. City of Great Falls (Cascade County 2010) Successfully defended City of Great Falls against claims of unconstitutional city ordinances

Tirums v. Town of Cascade (Cascade County 2011) Successfully defended Town of Cascade against claims of unconstitutional actions and ordinances

Anderson v. City of Deer Lodge (Powell County 2011) Successfully defended City of Deer Lodge against claims that the City improperly enacted and applied City ordinances

In re the Protest of Molina Medicaid Solutions (Feb. 6, 2013): 4/19/2013 Curt Drake and Michael Kauffman successfully defended the largest procurement contract ever awarded by the State of Montana. The contract, worth $179,000,000, came under attack by the unsuccessful bidder over alleged irregularities in the bid process. The bid protest was dropped and the case dismissed after the firm won several key pre-hearing motions.

Areas of Practice
-Personal Injury
-Insurance Litigation
-General Liability Defense
-Environmental Litigation
-Construction Litigation
-Products Liability
-Professional Malpractice

Bar Admission
-Montana State and Federal Courts, 1984

Education
-University of Montana School of Law, JD, 1984
-University of Montana, BA, 1980

Professional Associations and Memberships
-Director of the Drake Law Firm, P.C., 2005 through present
-Associated and a shareholder with the Law Firm of Keller, Reynolds, Drake, Johnson & Gillespie, P.C., Helena, Montana, from 1984 - 2004
-First Judicial District Bar Association - Member
-State Bar of Montana - Member
-Defense Research Institute - Member
-Montana Defense Trial Lawyers Association, current Past-President
-American Board of Trial Advocates, Associate
Education
  • University of Montana School of Law
    Juris Doctorate

Trevor Uffelman

Trevor began his career with one of Montana's largest law firms where he worked as part of a team of lawyers representing large corporate clients in a variety of litigation. In 2008, attracted by the firm's smaller size and excellent trial reputation, Trevor joined the Drake Law Firm, where his practice continues to be focused on litigation. Trevor specifically handles disputes involving insurance, administrative law, civil rights, commercial litigation, personal injuries and professional negligence, and employment law, among others. Additionally, Trevor counsels clients on innovative risk management solutions. When he's not in the office Trevor enjoys skiing, travel, maintaining his fitness, and options investing.

CASES
Patterson v. Verizon Wireless, 329 Mont. 79, 122 P.3d 1193 (2005) Successfully argued that wireless telecom provider was not required to pay seconded employee severance benefits under a severance plan after employees filed age discrimination claims.

Kapphan v. Vincent, 354 Mont. 392, 222 P.3d 645 (2009) Achieved summary judgment based on Montana's recreational use statute for land owner in a premises liability lawsuit.

In Re: Investigation of Montana Refining Company, Inc. (Fed. Trade Comm'n): Assisted client in responding to Federal Trade Commission subpoenas investigating pricing of gasoline in the pacific northwest.

Slack v. Lewis and Clark County, et al. (Mont. 2010): Achieved a $569,000 jury verdict for a family harmed after unknowingly purchasing a property severely contaminated by methamphetamine and its precursor ingredients.

Jason Wood v. Montana Department of Revenue 12/16/2011 Represented a state agency and achieved defense verdict in a case in which a high-ranking state government official claimed his termination violated the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and several state laws. The jury was persuaded by the trial argument that the termination was for legitimate job performance issues and returned a unanimous verdict in favor of the defense.

Aguado v. Chase Manhattan Mortgage Corp. et al. (D. Mont.) Defended lender against Consumer Protection Act and fraud claims involving improper foreclosure of real estate liens.

Hust v. Montana State Prison 5/31/2012 Successfully defended the Montana State Prison against age discrimination, retaliation, and wrongful discharge claims asserted by a former employee who was terminated for job performance issues and insubordinate behavior. A unanimous jury returned a verdict in favor of the prison.

Areas of Practice
-Complex litigation
-Commercial litigation
-Administrative law
-Insurance
-Insurance coverage
-Professional negligence
-Transportation
-Employment
-Civil Rights
-Human Rights Claims and Defense
-Federal Employers' Liability Act (FELA)

Bar Admission
-Montana, 2004
-U.S. District Court for the District of Montana
-U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

Education
-Columbus School of Law at Catholic University, JD, Washington D.C., 2004 -Lead Articles Editor, Journal of Communications Law and Policy
-Carroll College, BA, 2001

Professional Associations and Memberships
-Montana Bar Association
-Montana Trial Lawyers Association
Education
  • Columbus School of Law at Catholic University
    Juris Doctorate

Michael Kauffman

Michael joined the Drake Law Firm in 2009 after working as a Law Clerk for Justice Brian Morris of the Montana Supreme Court. Michael was attracted by the Drake Law Firm's reputation for quality, willingness to go to trial, and rarely matched success rate at trial. He appreciates the unique nature of the Drake Law Firm, including his ability as a member of a small firm to interact closely with clients, while still possessing the resources necessary to represent his clients at the highest level. Since joining the firm, Michael has played a key role in numerous successful trial court and Montana Supreme Court cases. He thrives on immersing himself in his cases and discovering the key factual details and legal theories that lead to success for his clients. Away from work, Michael enjoys spending time with his wife and young children, mountain-biking and running, and exploring Montana's mountains and rivers.

CASES
Patch v. Hillerich & Bradsby/Louisville Slugger, L&C County District Court 2009, MT Supreme Court 2011, 2011 MT 175 $850,000 verdict for family of American Legion pitcher killed by ball hit by aluminum baseball bat. Achieved Montana Supreme Court decision affirming the jury's verdict.

Chriske v. State of Montana Dept. of Correction, MT Supreme Court 2010, 357 Mont. 28 Successfully defended the State of Montana in Montana Supreme Court appeal of District Court order in favor of the State.

Holdren v. Falls Construction (Great Falls, MT 2010) $1.04 Million verdict for truck driver injured in construction accident.

Thain v. City of Great Falls (Cascade County 2010) Successfully defended City of Great Falls against claims of unconstitutional city ordinances

Tirums v. Town of Cascade (Cascade County 2011) Successfully defended Town of Cascade against claims of unconstitutional actions and ordinances

Anderson v. City of Deer Lodge (Powell County 2011) Successfully defended City of Deer Lodge against claims that the City improperly enacted and applied City ordinances

Houston v. City of East Helena (L&C County 2011) Successfully defended City of East Helena against claims that the City's negligence had damaged the Plaintiffs' home.

In re the Protest of Molina Medicaid Solutions (Feb. 6, 2013): Curt Drake and Michael Kauffman successfully defended the largest procurement contract ever awarded by the State of Montana. The contract, worth $179,000,000, came under attack by the unsuccessful bidder over alleged irregularities in the bid process. The bid protest was dropped and the case dismissed after the firm won several key pre-hearing motions. In re the Protest of Molina Medicaid Solutions, Case No. RFP11-2021P (Feb. 6, 2013).

Jason Wood v. Montana Department of Revenue (D. Mont. 12/16/2011 10/11/2012 Jason Wood v. Montana Department of Revenue 12/16/2011 Represented a state agency and achieved defense verdict in a case in which a high-ranking state government official claimed his termination violated the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and several state laws. The jury was persuaded by the trial argument that the termination was for legitimate job performance issues and returned a unanimous verdict in favor of the defense.

Areas of Practice
-Civil Litigation
-Personal Injury
-Products Liability
-Consumer Protection
-Insurance Litigation
-Civil Rights
-Human Rights Claims and Defenses
-Construction litigation

Bar Admission
-Montana, 2008
-U.S. District Court for the District of Montana
-Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

Education
-University of Idaho College of Law, JD, 2008 - Magna cum laude, Rogers Scholar, Law Review Articles Editor
-Clemson University, BS, 1995 - Magna cum laude, Academic All-American

Professional Associations and Memberships
-Montana Bar Association
-Law Clerk, Montana Supreme Court, Justice Brian Morris, 2008-2009
Education
  • University of Idaho College of Law
    Juris Doctorate

Amy K. Burns

Amy joined the Drake Law Firm in 2013. After graduating at the top of her class from Stanford Law School, she served as a law clerk to the Honorable Lucy H. Koh of the Northern District of California. Amy has participated in the litigation of several cases before the United States Supreme Court. Before becoming an attorney, she worked in a neuroscience research lab, where she designed and ran studies using cutting-edge brain scanning technology, and served as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer, specializing in disaster planning and recovery. She was drawn to the Drake Law Firm by its excellent reputation, personal attention to clients, and willingness to go to trial when necessary to deliver the highest level of service. When she's not working, Amy enjoys running, yoga, reading classic novels, and spending time with her husband and two dogs.

PUBLICATIONS
Counterfactual Contradictions: Interpretive Error in the Analysis of AEDPA, 65 Stan. L. Rev. 203 (2013).
Insurmountable Obstacles: Structural Errors, Procedural Default, and Ineffective Assistance, 64 Stan. L. Rev. 727 (2012).

Bar Admission
-Montana, 2013
-District of Montana, 2013
-Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, 2014
-California, 2012
-Northern District of California, 2012

Education
-B.A., Vassar College, 2005, with honors, in English and Cognitive Science, Phi Beta Kappa
-MFA, University of Arizona, 2008, Creative Writing
-J.D., Stanford Law School, 2012; Articles Editor, Stanford Law Review
-Law Clerk, Hon. Lucy H. Koh, Northern District of California
Education
  • Stanford Law School
    Juris Doctorate
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