Lewis v. TaylorAnnotate this Case
Respondent Steve Taylor invested $3 million in several investment companies operated by Sean Mueller. Unbeknownst to Taylor, the companies were part of a multi-million dollar Ponzi scheme. The "Mueller Funds" received approximately $150 million in investments, and paid out a little less than $90 million to investors before collapsing. Taylor happened to receive approximately $3.4 million (a return of his invested principal plus net profit) prior to the collapse. Other investors were not as fortunate, losing a sum total of approximately $72 million. In 2010, Mueller ultimately pled guilty to securities fraud, and was sentenced to a total of 40 years in prison. In addition, he was ordered to pay over $64 million in restitution. Petitioner C. Randel Lewis was appointed as Receiver for the Mueller Funds, tasked with collecting Mueller's assets to his creditors and defrauded investors. The Receiver and Taylor signed a tolling agreement that extended the time period within which the Receiver could bring suit against Taylor in an attempt to recover assets. The eventual complaint sought to recover the net profit Taylor received. Taylor received his last payout in April 2007, and moved for summary judgment claiming the Receiver's claim was time barred due to the applicable statute of limitations. The trial court considered the tolling agreement and ruled in the Receiver's favor. Taylor appealed, and the court of appeals reversed, interpreting the term "extinguished," as used in 38-8-110(1), C.R.S. (2015), imposed a jurisdictional time limit on filing a claim, and that the parties could not toll that limit by agreement. The Supreme Court concluded that 38-8-110(1)'s time limitation could indeed be tolled by express agreement. The Court reversed the appellate court and remanded the case for further proceedings.