Professor Jim Butler

Contact Information

Ph.: 505-277-0914
Fax: 505-277-4367
Office: 3423

Jim Butler

Visiting Professor of Law
Dean's Award for Distinguished Law School Service

A.B. 1972, Brown University
J.D. 1975, University of Denver, (CJS Award, Am. Jur. awards in Administrative Law, Corporations, UCC I and Estates; Managing Editor, Denver Law Journal)


Jim Butler practiced tax law in the Denver office of Holme Roberts & Owen LLP for most of his 29 years of active practice. The majority of his practice was transactional, including mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings and general entity selection and formation. He also did substantial tax controversy work, ranging from informal settlement discussions with tax officials to administrative litigation and appellate practice. Throughout his private practice career, Jim found the training and supervision of young associates to be one of the most personally satisfying aspects of the practice of law. He feels extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to apply his training and supervision experience this year as the Clinical Law Supervisor in the School of Law's Business and Tax Clinic.

Outside of law practice, Butler's interests include volunteer work and music. He has served on the boards of, and as board chair or president of, Mile High United Way (Denver's United Way organization) and Swallow Hill Music Association, a folk, roots and acoustic music organization in Denver. He currently serves on the board of Servicios de la Raza, a community service organization operating in northwest Denver.

In the music area, Jim enjoys playing guitar and singing. He has performed often in the Denver area, alone and with his trio—Take Three. You can sample his oeuvre at


Business Tax Clinic

Business and Tax Clinic

Pre-requisite: Completion of first year curriculum. Pre- or co-requisite: Ethics.
Preference: Completion of Federal Income Tax and any Business Law courses.

Summer 2013--Prof. Nathalie Martin, Prof. Grace Allison
Fall 2013--Prof. James Butler, Prof. Mary Pareja
Spring 2014--Prof. James Butler, Prof. Mary Pareja

This clinic section is part of the law school's Economic Development program.  Although specific types of client matters cannot be guaranteed, the Business and Tax Clinic will emphasize the following:

  • student representation of low-income taxpayers in disputes before the IRS and the New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department, including Tax Court litigation, audit defense, and collections matters;
  • assistance to startup and established nonprofit organizations seeking IRS recognition of tax-exempt status and other operational assistance;
  • support of community-based efforts to promote economic development; and
  • legal services to low-income, small-business clients who cannot afford to hire a lawyer.

Small-business cases will likely include the following:

  • giving advice on the choice and formation of business entities;
  • drafting organizational documents;
  • reviewing and drafting leases, purchase and licensing arrangements and other contracts; and
  • resolving business disputes.

Cases and instruction will also include matters of personal interest to a new lawyer seeking to open his or her own practice.  We strive to provide a broad-spectrum experience, including pure transactional practice (small business startup, contract drafting), dispute resolution (IRS controversy, small case business controversies) and consumer protection (bankruptcy, foreclosure defense and consumer credit dispute resolution).  

Clients of the law school’s Clinical Law Program include individuals and organizations that have multiple legal and non-legal needs and objectives.  Students of the Business and Tax Clinic often collaborate with students of the Community Lawyering Clinic or Southwest Indian Law Clinic in providing services to these clients.

Students will be required (1) to attend and actively participate in up to five classroom sessions (ten during summer’s first three weeks) during each week of the academic semester and (2) to maintain, in addition to classroom hours, a schedule of 24 (2-hours block) fixed office hours (physically present in the clinic, working on clinic matters) each week during Summer, or 16 (2-hours block) fixed office hours each week during Fall and Spring semesters.

Students having specific questions about the Business and Tax Clinic are encouraged to visit with Profs. Allison, Butler, Martin, or Pareja.

Representative Speeches & Publications (1999 to 2005)

Colorado Taxes and Tax Reform—Correcting the Incorrigible, presented at the CSCPA Rocky Mountain Tax Institute, Denver, CO (2003)

INDOPCO Regulations on Capitalization, panel discussion at 7th Biennial Parker C. Fielder Oil and Gas Tax Conference, Houston, TX (2003)

Conservation Easements—The Gift that Keeps on Giving (University of Denver 53rd Annual Tax Institute, Denver, CO) (2003)

State and Local Tax Consequences of Asset Allocation Decisions (Tax Executives Institute State and Local Tax Seminar, Denver, CO) (2002)

Colorado State and Local Tax Exemptions for Charitable Organizations (The Colorado Lawyer, vol. 28, no. 11, p. 57 & vol. 29, no. 8, p. 55) (1999 and 2000)

Oil & Gas Hedging Transactions, panel discussion at 5th Biennial Parker C. Fielding Oil & Gas Tax Conference, Austin, TX (1999)

Recent Developments in Business Taxation, with Emphasis on Oil and Gas Taxation (Southwestern Mineral Law Foundation, The Fiftieth Annual Institute on Oil and Gas Law and Taxation, Houston, Texas) (1999)