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James M. Cordes

James M.


Of Counsel Attorney
Portrait of James M. Cordes
James M. Cordes is Of Counsel as an Attorney, Mediator, and Arbitrator at GEM Family Law.  For nearly a decade, James has developed a superior reputation for successfully litigating complex family law, contempt, and civil cases in both the trial and appellate courts, including permanent orders, temporary orders, child support and maintenance, common law marriage, protection orders, attorney fees, child relocation, paternity, and the emergency restriction of parenting time.

James’ extensive and varied experience with the courts guides him in negotiating fair and creative settlements during mediation.  He has the experience to guide clients through complicated and unique financial issues, including dividing business interests, trusts, and pensions (including military pensions and defined benefit plans), determining child support and maintenance obligations, and the division of marital property. 

In addition to handling all of the complexities of financial issues in family law cases, James uses his award-winning skillset to assist clients in resolving their child custody issues (the allocation of parental responsibilities) and child support.  While James focuses on creative solutions, he is a seasoned trial attorney and expertly and tirelessly advocates for his clients, both in negotiations and in court.

Prior to practicing family law, James was a Fellow at the Colorado Department of State. As a Fellow, he helped develop new policies based on his analysis of statutory law and administrative regulation, and his work prompted legislative change to the Notary Public statute. 

James received his undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado, Boulder in 2006, and his Juris Doctor from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in 2010.  James is a member of the Sotomayor Inn of Court, is a contributing author to the Colorado Lawyer and Law Week Colorado, was faculty at the 2012 and 2017 Annual Family Law Institute in addition to the 2020 Basic Skills CLE for young lawyers.  James has been selected as a Super Lawyers Rising Star for 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020, and has an “Superb” rating from Avvo.

  • Colorado, 2010
  • University of Denver Sturm College of Law, Denver, Colorado | Juris Doctor, 2010
    • Quarterfinalist, 2007 Hogan & Hartson CU/DU Cup Mock Trial Competition
  • University of Colorado, Boulder, Boulder, Colorado | Bachelor of Arts, 2006
    • UNLV Honors College 
  • 40-Hour CBA/CLE Mediation Training Certificate | January 2019
  • Faculty at the 2020 Family Law Basic Skills CLE | Protection Orders in Family Law: Grounds, Procedure and Practical Advice
  • Faculty at the 2017 Annual Family Law Institute | Attorney’s Fees, Liens, and Malpractice: Strategies and Ethical Considerations
  • Faculty at the 2012 Annual Family Law Institute | Child Support Essentials
  • Six Strategies for Successful ADR in Family Law, Law Week Colorado, June 2019
  • If Your Spouse is Embroiled in Sexual Harassment Allegations, Avvo, February 2018
  • Retroactive Child Support: Conflicting Decisions and Practical Advice, The Colorado Lawyer, July 2012
  • Colorado Bar Association
  • Denver Bar Association
  • Sotomayor Inn of Court
James M. Cordes
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