Colorado Initiative 107 (2008)

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Initiative 107 or the Contracts with State-Licensed Professionals Initiative would have protected the right of individuals to contract with any state-licensed professional for services for any fee acceptable to both parties.

The Colorado Trial Lawyers Association agreed to withdraw this measure on May 6, 2008—as well as the eight others it filed in response to a measure to limit attorney fees—when proponents of that measure (the Attorney Fees Initiative) agreed to also withdraw.[1]

This measure was a citizen-initiated constitutional amendment.

This amendment, if approved, would have conflicted with proposed Initiative 89 to limit attorney fees, as well as two measures filed by the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association along with this one (Initiative 108 and Initiative 109). In cases of conflicting initiatives passing, the one with the most votes prevails, although since this measure is an amendment to the Constitution while the others would be initiated statutes, it is possible that this one, if passed, would overrule the others even if they received more votes.

Details of the amendment

This measure would have added a new section to the Colorado Constitution which would read:

Neither the state of Colorado nor any of its political subdivisions shall adopt or enforce any statute, regulation, ordinance, or policy limiting the right of a person to independently contract for professional services with a person licensed by a board or agency supervised by the division of registrations in the department of regulatory agencies, or its successor, or by the Colorado Supreme Court, to provide those services for a fee acceptable to both parties. This section of the Constitution shall be in all respects self-executing.

Supporters

The measure was filed by the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association, as part of a group of nine initiatives that are intended to "improve the lives of working families and consumers in Colorado," according to John Sadwith, executive director of the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association.[2]

"For too long corporate interests have been put ahead of consumer interests in this state," Sadwich said. "The initiatives filed shift the balance of fairness back to the consumer. Real people in this state deserve a break."[2]

The proposals are believed to be a response to a ballot measure filed earlier this year by former State Legislator Mark Hillman and what Hillman calls a coalition of business interests and grass roots activists. Hillman's proposed initiative would limit attorney's contingency fees in civil court judgments.[2]

One of the measures filed by Sadwith and attorney Scott Wolfe imposes increased state taxes on federal farm subsidies, of which Hillman is reportedly a recipient.[2]

The nine initiatives that were filed as a group target doctors, real estate brokers, corporate executives, and homebuilders. The other eight initiatives are:

Opponents

Douglas Friednash, a Denver lawyer who has been critical of the ease with which such measures can make it on the ballot, called the measures "Draconian and disengenuous." He said the measures "go far beyond what the trial lawyers ought to be concerned about."[2]

Status

The measure did not make the ballot.

See also

External links

References