Chris’s practice is focused on products liability defense and complex litigation. Chris has coordinated and defended individual and class action lawsuits in federal and state courts across the country at the trial and appellate court levels. His current practice focuses primarily on the defense of national and international corporations in consumer product litigation.
Chris also advises clients with respect to corporate document retention and e-discovery issues. He liaises with in-house counsel, corporate records personnel, and IT groups regarding records management and technology systems to help ensure efficient, proper responses to discovery demands. Chris also consults with case teams regarding discovery matters, including hold notices and record preservation and collection issues.
Chris is the immediate past-chair of DRI’s Electronic Discovery Committee and a recent vice chair of the ABA’s Law & Technology Committee. He is also a member of the Sedona Conference Working Group on Electronic Document Retention and Production and has participated in project teams relating to litigation holds and the use of search and retrieval technology for discovery purposes. Chris has authored a number of recent papers on electronic discovery and litigation issues and is a frequent speaker on discovery-related topics. He is also a regular author for SHB’s E-Discovery Litigation Update, and he has contributed to the firm’s Product Liability Litigation Report and Food & Beverage Litigation Update. Chris has been included in The Best Lawyers in America (2013, 2014) and was named to Missouri Lawyer Media's 2010 list of "Up and Coming" attorneys.
Chris received his Juris Doctor, with high distinction, from the University of Iowa College of Law in 1999. While in law school, Chris was the senior note and comment editor for the Journal of Corporation Law. He received his bachelor's degree, summa cum laude, from Mount Saint Clare College in 1996.
Christopher V. Cotton & Tiffany F. Lim, E-Discovery Reform and Cost Reduction, For the Defense, February 2010.
Christopher V. Cotton & Tiffany F. Lim, Effective Discovery Without Gamesmanship, DRI Eletronic Discovery Committee Seminar Course Materials, May 2009.
Christopher V. Cotton, How and Why to Implement Litigation Holds, Pork Exec, November 2007. View
Christopher V. Cotton and William E. Burtis, Coordinating Litigation Hold Effort: A Primer, Midwest In-House, July 2007.
Christopher V. Cotton and Laurel J. Harbour, International Discovery: Navigating Uncharted Waters, IADC Committee Newsletter, April 2007. View
Christopher V. Cotton, Litigation Holds: Focusing on Communication, Coordination and Compliance Monitoring to Avoid Oversights and Missteps, Bloomberg Corporate Law Journal, Fall 2006.
Christopher V. Cotton (co-author), Know When to Hold'Em: Preservation of Electronic Records of Third Party Contractors, DRI Defense Practice Seminar Course Materials, May 2005.
Christopher V. Cotton (co-author), Defenders of the Faith - In Corporate Records Compliance, Inside Litigation, Spring 2005.
Speaker, "At the Intersection of Ethics & Technology," September 6, 2012 (Sponsored by SHB) (Bloomington, Illinois).
Speaker, "Predictive Coding: Losing the Spin & Finding Practical Uses," September 6, 2012 (Sponsored by SHB) (Bloomington, Illinois).
Panelist, "Stages of Litigation: A to Z,” June 13, 2012 (Sponsored by ALI-ABA) (Audio seminar).
Speaker, "30(b)(6) Depositions of IT Witnesses - Preparation and Lessons Learned," October 8, 2009 (Sponsored by the Defense Research Institute) (Chicago, Illinois).
Speaker, "Effective Discovery Without Gamesmanship," May 8, 2009 (Sponsored by Defense Research Institute) (New York, New York).
Discussion Leader and Panelist, "E-Discovery: An A to Z Workshop," June 17, 2008 (Sponsored by West Legalworks) (St. Louis, Missouri).
Speaker, "Discovery in the ESI Era," June 1, 2007 (Sponsored by the Kansas Department of Administration) (Topeka, Kansas).
Speaker, "Record Destruction & Litigation Issues," May 23, 2007 (Sponsored by Lorman) (Overland Park, Kansas).
Speaker, "'E' is for Ethics (and E-Discovery)," May 16, 2007 (Sponsored by the Association of Corporate Counsel) (Kansas City, Missouri).
Speaker, "E-Discovery Ethics," April 27, 2007 (Sponsored by the Kansas Bar Association) (Wichita, Kansas).
Speaker, "Discovery in the ESI Era," March 3, 2007 (Sponsored by the Kansas Bar Association).
Speaker, "E-Discovery Best Practices," October 5, 2006 (Sponsored by LexisNexis) (Kansas City, Missouri).
Panelist, "National Forum on E-Discovery and Electronic Records Management: So what do we do now?," September 12, 2006 (Sponsored by SHB) (Kansas City, Missouri).
Speaker, "Emerging Issues in E-Discovery & Corporate Records Compliance," August 8, 2006 (Sponsored by Risk and Insurance Management Society, Inc., Greater Kansas City Chapter) (Kansas City, Missouri).
Moderator, "A Day in Discovery," May 18, 2006 (sponsored by The Missouri Bar) (Kansas City, Missouri).
Speaker, "Emerging Issues in E-Discovery & Corporate Records Compliance," May 9, 2006 (Sponsored by SHB) (Webcast).
Speaker, “Collaboration: Legal Technologies, Methodologies and Approach,” January 31, 2006 (Sponsored by LegalTech) (New York, New York).
Speaker, “Walking a Case through the Discovery Process from the Law Firm’s Perspective, “ January 31, 2006 (Sponsored by LegalTech) (New York, New York).
Speaker, “Emerging Issues in E-Discovery and Corporate Records Compliance,” December 16, 2005 (Sponsored by The Iowa State Bar Association’s Federal Practice Committee) (Johnston, Iowa).
Panelist, “Proactive eDiscovery Planning Minimizing the Impact of eDiscovery with Proactive Compliance and Archiving Solutions,” December 13, 2005 (Sponsored by RenewData) (Webinar).
Defense Research Institute
Chair, E-Discovery Committee (2008-2010)
Vice Chair, E-Discovery Committee (2007-2008)
American Bar Association
Vice Chair, Law & Technology Committee (2007-2008)
Working Group 1: Electronic Document Retention & Production (2005-Present)
Working Group 6: International Electronic Information Management,
Discovery & Disclosure (2005-Present)
Missouri Organization of Defense Lawyers
Chris is admitted to practice before the state courts of Missouri, Iowa and Wisconsin. Chris is also admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth and Eighth Circuits, and the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri.
1999 J.D., high distinction, University of Iowa College of Law
1996 B.A., summa cum laude, Mount Saint Clare College