Tess Hand-Bender focuses her practice on complex commercial litigation, white-collar crime, and investigations. She has represented clients from a variety of industries at all stages of litigation and confidential arbitration, from initiation of proceedings through trial and appeal. Ms. Hand-Bender has experience in a wide range of commercial disputes, including contract and business tort matters.
Ms. Hand-Bender also maintains an active pro bono practice. In addition to working with the Colorado Lawyers Committee, she first-chaired a pro bono misdemeanor trial for an indigent client and served on the trial team representing nine Colorado couples who successfully challenged the constitutionality of Colorado’s ban on same-sex marriage. Ms. Hand-Bender and the team were honored with a Special Recognition Award from the Colorado Lawyers Committee and the Visionaries in Action Award from the GLBT Community Center of Colorado. Ms. Hand-Bender has previously served as Chair of the Colorado Lawyer’s Committee’s Young Lawyers Division and completed the Colorado Bar Association’s Leadership Training Program (COBALT). Ms. Hand-Bender also serves as co-chair of DGS’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee and is a member of the 2020 class of the General Counsel Mentor Program.
Before joining DGS, Ms. Hand-Bender practiced at a boutique litigation firm in Denver. She also served as a law clerk to the Honorable Neil M. Gorsuch of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit and to the Honorable Philip A. Brimmer of the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado. Ms. Hand-Bender graduated from Berkeley School of Law, where she was Order of the Coif and served as the submissions editor for the Criminal Law Journal. She is active in the Colorado Women’s Bar Association and the Colorado LGBT Bar Association and has been named a “Rising Star” by Colorado Super Lawyers. She is admitted to practice in Colorado and before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit and the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado.
- Represented Fortune 500 Company in Trade Secrets Litigation.
- Represents major telecommunications company in a variety of commercial disputes.
- Represented a large company in the internal investigation and disclosure of potential False Claims Act violations.
- Obtained Summary Judgement in client’s favor in complex contract dispute.
Representative Trial Experience
- First chaired bench trial in breach of contract matter involving $9 million counterclaim and prevailed on all issues.
- Won acquittal for client after jury trial in felony criminal matter.
- Defeated class certification during four-day class cert hearing.
- Prevailed in fee dispute arbitration.
University of California, Berkeley School of Law , J.D., Order of the Coif, 2010
Stanford University, B.A., 2005
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