J. Matt Thornton


Tel 303.299.7370
Fax 303.296.3956

J. Matt Thornton is an associate in the Litigation Group. Matt's practice focuses on commercial litigation in both federal and state courts, including individual actions and class action defense, privacy and cybersecurity matters, product liability and mass tort, and disputes implicating the First Amendment.

Matt is involved in all aspects of his cases and prides himself in providing creative, business-oriented solutions for his clients. Among other things, Matt has extensive experience briefing dispositive motions, defending discovery disagreements, handling third-party discovery disputes, arguing substantive motions in court, preparing witnesses to give testimony, taking and defending depositions, negotiating individual and class action settlements, spearheading mediation, and maintaining clear, concise, and timely communications with clients.

Representative Litigation Matters

In recent years, Matt has:

  • Defended large product liability class actions alleging breach of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, express and implied warranties, and myriad consumer protection statutes.
  • Represented a hemp startup in a partnership dispute, in which he helped the client regain control of the company, secure the company’s assets, and expel all wrongdoers.
  • Pursued and prevailed on First Amendment claims against a prominent public figure who censored his constituents’ criticism on his government-sponsored social media pages.
  • Defended numerous lawsuits involving allegations of negligence, fraud, conspiracy, and violations of myriad statutes, including the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, and Fair Debt Collection Practices Act;
  • Assisted clients in responding to data breaches, including a "phishing" scam that required notification to individuals residing in 30 states, and helped navigate the resulting litigation;
  • Defended a mobile advertising company in a multi-million dollar breach of contract dispute;
  • Represented large corporations in a putative class action alleging, among other things, wage and hour violations and violations of the TCPA;
  • Favorably settled an age discrimination and retaliation lawsuit filed by a serial litigant;
  • Facilitated for an employer the favorable settlement of a former employee's retaliation claim;
  • Represented a development company in a dispute over earnest money;
  • Defended a large trust from a family member's unlawful attempt to reach the trust's assets;
  • Aided the Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition in its efforts to ensure the public's right of access to government records is not arbitrarily ignored;
  • Obtained clemency for an inmate sentenced to years in prison under outdated and discriminatory sentencing guidelines for possessing a small amount of crack cocaine; and
  • Represented, pro bono, a disabled individual in a landlord/tenant dispute resulting in a highly favorable settlement for the client.

In law school, Matt served as a Judicial Intern for Justice Gregory Hobbs, Jr. of the Colorado Supreme Court.

Professional Activities

American Bar Association

Colorado Bar Association

Denver Bar Association

Board Memberships

Cleo Parker Robinson Dance

Recognitions and Accomplishments

The Best Lawyers in America "Ones to Watch," – Appellate Practice, Commercial Litigation (Denver), 2021


Co-author, "Government Attorneys—Tell Your Clients They Can't Censor People on Social Media," Bloomberg Law Insight, September 3, 2019

Co-author, "Second Circuit Affirms That President Trump's Blocking of Opponents on His Twitter Account Violates First Amendment," Ballard Spahr alert, July 10, 2019

Co-author, "No Actual Damages Required to Sue Under Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Law," Ballard Spahr alert, January 28, 2019

Co-author, "Oregon, New York, Alabama, and Rhode Island Join List of States Considering Data Breach Legislation Post-Equifax," Pratt's Privacy & Cybersecurity Law Report, May 2018

Co-author, "CPSC Explores Safety Hazards in 'Internet of Things' Products," Ballard Spahr alert, April 11, 2018

Co-author, "Flooring It into the Future with Self-Driving Cars," ColoradoBiz Magazine, July 13, 2017

Co-author, "Overview of the Association of Corporate Counsel Model Information Protection and Security Controls for Outside Counsel Possessing Company Confidential Information," Ballard Spahr memo, April 2017

Co-author, "Ninth Circuit to Decide Key TCPA Insurance Issue," Ballard Spahr alert, February 22, 2017

Co-author, "Colorado Supreme Court Limits Jurisdiction Over Manufacturers," Ballard Spahr alert, September 20, 2016

Speaking Engagements

Speaker, "How IoT Regulation and Litigation are Transforming the Manufacturing Industry," Ballard Spahr webinar, January 16, 2019

Speaker, "California's Proposition 65: What You Need to Know About the Impending Regulation Changes," Ballard Spahr webinar, July 26, 2018

University of Denver, Sturm College of Law (J.D. 2015; Order of St. Ives)
Denver University Law Review, Staff Editor; Denver Journal of International Law and Policy, Staff Editor
Jessup International Moot Court Team, Captain

Virginia Commonwealth University (M.A. Economics, magna cum laude)

Virginia Commonwealth University (B.S. Economics, magna cum laude)


U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado

U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit