Stephen L. Adams
Stephen represents insurance companies, health care facilities and professionals involved in litigation ranging from professional malpractice to appeals to personal injury. Stephen plays an active role in the firm’s motion practice and his colleagues often refer to him as the “Rules guru” because of his ability to quickly identify the intricacies of the law and present the client’s position through innovative, persuasive and concise motions. Stephen really enjoys researching and writing because it is one of the few places where true creativity may be expressed in the practice of law.
Stephen’s appellate experience includes briefing and arguing insurance defense, business litigation, and governmental defense (including contractual litigation, employment litigation, statutory interpretation, and constitutional law) cases before the Idaho Supreme Court and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He also provides significant support to our trial teams with an emphasis on motions in limine, jury instructions and post-trial motions. Stephen is Past Chair of the Idaho State Bar’s appellate practice section, and he has been an active member of the Section for eight years. He was on the editorial board for the last two editions of the Idaho Appellate Handbook.
Stephen’s prior professional experience includes:
- Serving as a staff attorney for the Honorable Lynn Norton, Fourth Judicial District Court where he analyzed and drafted court decisions at every stage of both civil and criminal proceedings.
- Working as an associate attorney at a Boise-based law firm where he represented clients in insurance defense, governmental defense and education law cases. Some of the results he obtained in this role include: obtaining attorney fees for defense clients on appeal before the Idaho Supreme Court and U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and obtaining dispositive summary judgments and dismissals on behalf of numerous governmental, business, and individual clients.
- Serving as an adjunct professor at Utah Valley University in the Legal Studies Department of the Woodbury School of Business, where he taught Bankruptcy and Collections, Wills, Trusts and Probate, Introduction to American Law, Business Law, Evidence and Torts.
Stephen is admitted to practice in Idaho and Utah.
- Idaho Association of Defense Counsel (IADC), Director at Large
- Idaho State Bar (ISB) Appellate Practice section, Past Chair
- Idaho State Bar (ISB) Government & Public Sector Lawyers section, Member
Co-Author, “Interlocutory Appeal in Idaho: Is There a Better Process?,” The Advocate, Vol. 66, Issue 2, pg. 18-21 (February 2023)
- CLE Co-Presenter: “Stare Decisis, Dicta, or . . . Something else?,” Idaho State Bar Appellate Practice Section, Boise, Idaho (September 2022)
CLE: “How to Bite Back in a Dog Bite Case,” Idaho Association of Defense Counsel (IADC), Boise, Idaho (May 2022)
Author, “How to Deal with a Dead Party in a Live Case,” The Advocate, Vol. 64, Issue 10, pg. 26-29 (October 2021)
- CLE: “How to Deal With a Dead Client in a Live Case,” Idaho State Bar Government & Public Sector Lawyers Section, Boise, Idaho (September 2, 2021)
- CLE Co-Presenter: “Handling Your First Appeal,” Idaho State Bar annual meeting (July 2021)
- Author, “The Constitutionality of Idaho Code 12-120(4),” Idaho Association of Defense Counsel (IADC): The Dynamic of Civil Defense, Summer 2021
- CLE: “Why and How to Prepare your Record on Appeal,” Idaho State Bar Appellate Practice Section, Boise, Idaho (April 8, 2021)
Co-Author, “The Internal Appellate Alert,” The Advocate, Vol.63, Issue 9, pg. 16-19 (September 2020)
CLE: “2020 Medical Malpractice Case Law Update,” Idaho Association of Defense Counsel (IADC), Boise, Idaho (September 2020)
CLE: “An Overview of the Appeals Process in Idaho State Courts,” Idaho State Bar Litigation Section, Boise, Idaho (May 2019)
- CLE: “Thoughts on Settlement in Civil Cases,” Idaho State Bar Professionalism & Ethics Section and Government & Public Sector Lawyers Section, Boise, Idaho (Spring 2019)
- CLE: “The Default Tool Kit,” presentation to the Ada and Canyon County Staff Attorneys, Boise, Idaho (October 5, 2018)
- Author, “The How’s and When’s of Permissive Appeals,” The Advocate, Vol. 61, No. 5 (May, 2018) – The Idaho State Bar Appellate Practice Section earned the distinction of “Best Sponsored Issue” of The Advocate in 2017-18 for this issue.
- Author, “The Default Judgment Tool Kit,” The Advocate, Vol. 60, No. 2 (February 2017) – The Idaho State Bar Real Property Section earned the distinction of “Best Sponsored Issue” of The Advocate in 2016-17 for this issue.
- Author, “Listing the Canons of Construction,” The Advocate, Vol. 59, No. 5 (May 2016)
- CLE: “Common Pleading Mistakes and Errors in Applications to Court,” Idaho State Bar Young Lawyers, Boise, Idaho (September 2015)
- Co-Author, “Excerpts from the Idaho Appellate Handbook Show its Usefulness,” The Advocate, Vol. 58, No. 8 (August 2015)
- Co-Author, “Preserving Issues for Appeal: Leaving Breadcrumbs for the Way Home,” The Advocate, Vol. 58, No. 8 (August 2015)
- Author, “Following the Recipe: A Rules Reminder for Motion Practice,” The Advocate, Vol. 58, No. 2 (Feb. 2015) – Stephen was awarded “Article of the Year” by The Advocate’s Editorial Board for writing this article
- Author, “Dealing with Sham Affidavits in Idaho Courts,” The Advocate, Vol. 57, No. 8 (August 2014)
- Stephen once baked approximately 140,000 calories of cheesecake in one week. Amusingly, though Stephen makes a mean cheesecake, he doesn’t really like cheesecake all that much.
- Stephen has over 1000 classical CDs, including the entire collected works of Bach.
- In 12th grade, Stephen participated in a science competition where he had to build a Rube Goldberg machine designed to get a golf ball into a paper cup (which started upside down) in exactly two minutes. When Stephen started the machine, it almost literally exploded, shooting the golf ball a good 20 yards away (luckily not hitting anyone). Despite this, Stephen still got 3rd place.
- Brigham Young University, B.A. in Music
- Vanderbilt University Law School, J.D.