Marcus J. Lock
Marcus is currently the firm’s managing member. He represents a variety of clients, primarily in the areas of civil litigation, real estate and development, public entity law, construction, and water law. He often acts as outside general counsel to both public and private clients. Marcus was named a Lawyer of the Year by Law Week Colorado in 2014, and he has been recognized repeatedly by Colorado Super Lawyers Magazine. He is also a Senior Fellow with the Litigation Counsel of America. Marcus clerked for the Colorado Supreme Court and the United States District Court for the District of Colorado after graduating first in his law school class at the University of Colorado. Before relocating permanently to the beautiful Gunnison Valley, Marcus practiced law in Denver at one of Colorado’s preeminent litigation and trial firms. He has worked on worked on numerous high-profile cases across the State of Colorado.
Law of the Rockies (and predecessor firms)
Provides representation to various clients in all aspects civil litigation, including trials and appeals in state and federal courts.
Provides representation to various clients in real estate and development matters, land use planning, and commercial transactions.
Provides representation to numerous public entities across the State of Colorado.
Provides representation to various clients in all aspects of water rights litigation, water rights transactions, water supply planning, changes of water rights, implementation of exchanges, development of augmentation plans, and related matters.
Associate Attorney 2004-2007
Reilly Pozner & Connelly, LLP
Represented clients in all aspects and types of civil and administrative litigation, including complex commercial litigation, real property litigation, franchise disputes, trade secrets litigation, professional malpractice litigation, bar admission and disciplinary litigation, and litigation concerning various other tort and contract disputes.
Spearheaded firm’s participation in Colorado Pledge To Diversity and other efforts to increase hiring and retention of minority candidates.
Acted as an ethics consultant to management on compliance with the Colorado Rules of Professional Conduct.
Bratton & McClow, LLC
Represented clients in commercial and construction litigation, appellate litigation, real property litigation, acquisition and sale of real property, commercial transactions, water rights litigation, water rights transactions, and business formation and planning.
Law Clerk to the Honorable Zita L. Weinshienk 2002-2003
United States District Court for the District of Colorado
Drafted opinions, orders, and jury instructions pertaining to various areas of the law for Judge Weinshienk’s consideration.
Assisted in the management and adjudication of trials, motions for summary judgment, motions to dismiss, and various other procedural and substantive pleadings and motions.
Responsible for the administration of a docket of approximately 150 cases.
Law Clerk to the Honorable Nancy E. Rice 2001-2002
Colorado Supreme Court
Drafted opinions of the Colorado Supreme Court pertaining to civil, criminal, constitutional, and many other areas of the law for Justice Rice’s consideration.
Drafted multiple memoranda analyzing whether the Colorado Supreme Court should grant certiorari review in cases or issues decided by the Colorado Court of Appeals or Colorado District Courts.
Assistant Legislative Liaison (Lobbyist) Jan. 1997-May 1997
Arizona Game and Fish Department
Acted as a legislative proponent of departmental policies by analyzing, introducing, supporting, or opposing legislation in the Arizona State Legislature.
Real Estate Law and Development
- Public Entities
- Water Law
- Land Use Planning
- Construction Law
Summa cum laude
Honors, Awards, and Activities
Senior Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America 2020-2023
Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America
Inclusion in Colorado Super Lawyers Magazine 2009-2023
Barrister’s Best Water Lawyer, Law Week Colorado 2016
Member, Supreme Court Pattern Civil Jury Instructions Committee 2012-2016
Colorado Lawyers Committee Special Recognition Award 2013-2015
Lawyer of the Year, Law Week Colorado 2014
Co-Chair, Water Transfers Conference, CLE International, Beaver Creek, CO 2013
Colorado Bar Association Ethics Committee, Member 2007-2011
Board Member, KBUT Community Radio 2015-2018
All Colorado State Trial Courts
Colorado Court of Appeals
Colorado Supreme Court
United States District Court for the District of Colorado
Pro Hac Vice Admission in Arizona Superior Court, County of Maricopa
Pro Hac Vice Admission in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey
Colorado Bar Association
Seventh Judicial District Bar Association
Mr. Lock focuses his practice on commercial and construction litigation, real estate, land use planning and development, public entity law, business formation, planning, and transactions, and water rights adjudication and transactions. A summary of representative matters follows:
Routinely act in a general counsel capacity for public and private clients by providing both proactive and reactive legal advice concerning liability avoidance, assessment, and mitigation, business planning, negotiating strategy, asset protection, employment law, legal compliance issues, and adherence with corporate formalities.
Successful representation of venture capital fund in multiple litigation matters concerning employment law, theft of trade secrets, fraud, and breach of contract.
Obtained multi-million-dollar judgment on the pleadings for collection of a debt on behalf of an oil and gas investor.
Successful representation of multiple construction companies and homeowners in construction defect actions.
Successful collection of hundreds of thousands of dollars owed to construction company in mechanic’s lien foreclosure action.
Successfully closed multiple real estate transactions of all types: residential, commercial, and agricultural.
Regularly responsible for the negotiation and execution of complex commercial leasing arrangements.
Obtained numerous land use changes on behalf of clients in Gunnison County, Colorado.
Routinely assist small businesses with formation, planning, and legal compliance issues.
Representation of multiple special districts and other public entities in all aspects of their management and operations.
Regularly represent clients such as water conservancy districts and water and sanitation districts with water supply planning and administration.
Representation of both sellers and purchasers in complex transactions concerning the transfer of water rights worth millions of dollars.
Experienced in, and regularly responsible for, representing clients in obtaining various decrees in water court and opposing various water rights applications.
CLE International’s 4th Annual Conference, Water Transfers
Beaver Creek, CO, 2013
Water Rights Case Law: An Update
Western State Colorado University
Gunnison, CO, 2013
Understanding The Scope of Ditch and Pipeline Easements
CLE in Colorado, Inc., Sponsored by the Colorado Supreme Court and the Colorado Bar Association
Denver, CO, 2013
Water Law 101: The Basic Principles of Colorado Water Law
Colorado Open Space Alliance Annual Conference
Crested Butte, CO 2013
Storage Rights Water Law
Ditch and Reservoir Company Alliance, Annual Convention
Colorado Springs, Colorado, 2012
Staying in the Current: Developments and Trends in Colorado Water Law (with Kendall K. Burgemeister)
36th Annual Colorado Water Workshop
Gunnison, Colorado, 2011
Water Law 101 (with Kendall K. Burgemeister)
Colorado Water Trust, Water on the Land Workshops
Various Locations, 2010-2011
Colorado Water Law in the 21st Century (with Kendall K. Burgemeister)
Crestone, Colorado, 2010
Character and Fitness in the Bar Admission Process (with Larry S. Pozner) (2006)
University of Colorado School of Law
Boulder, Colorado, 2006
Increasing Access to Justice for Colorado’s Poor: Expanding the Role of Nonlawyers in the Delivery of Legal Services to Colorado’s Indigent, 72 Colo. L. Rev. 459 (2001).
Braving The Waters of Supreme Court Takings Jurisprudence: Will the Fifth Amendment Protect Western Water Rights From Federal Environmental Regulations, 4 U. Denv. Water L. Rev. 76 (2000).
“Throughout my career, I have focused on identifying, and implementing, creative and innovative solutions to complex disputes. I am not intimidated by new areas of the law or issues of first impression, and instead, welcome the opportunity to use hard work, creativity, and careful research to solve a new problem. I enjoy working with my clients, and I recognize that they are valuable members of my team. Though I have litigated matters across the state, and I am comfortable and capable in both state and federal courtrooms, I treat trial as an option of last resort. Accordingly, I work hard to identify opportunities to negotiate resolutions of disputes in accordance with my client’s goals and without the expense of trial. However, in my experience, I am an effective negotiator because I am always prepared to go to trial and capable of succeeding once I get there, and sometimes trial is the only viable option to achieve the client’s goals.”
Devoted father of five children, loving husband, avid cook, and amateur triathlete.