Timothy Bywater focuses his practice on the representation of government entities throughout Utah in the areas of eminent domain, land use and zoning, and Fair Housing Act, as well as constitutional and civil rights claims. He is experienced in all aspects of litigation, including appeals.
Much of Tim’s land use practice involves the condemnation of land for public projects – especially road projects. Tim was part of a team that successfully resolved more than 50 eminent domain cases generated by the I-15 CORE expansion project.
Tim has a hands-on understanding of the legal challenges faced by local governments. For more than three years, he served as assistant city attorney for West Valley City, where he worked closely with elected officials and administrators on a wide range of issues. He was also involved in risk management and oversaw outside litigation, particularly of civil rights claims against police.
Because of this experience, Tim looks for creative solutions to resolve legal issues. When solutions cannot be reached, he zealously litigates in defense of his clients.
Tim also defends clients in select medical malpractice and asbestos claims. Prior to attending law school, Tim spent ten years as a critical care nurse. In cases with a medical component, his healthcare background illuminates his work allowing him to quickly understand complex medical and healthcare issues. In addition, he worked several years for a successful medical software company. He maintains his license as a registered nurse.
Prior to joining the firm, Tim was a senior associate with Williams & Hunt.
Presentations & Publications
Speaker, Police Liability Claims from Start to Finish, National Business Institute, May 2017
Professional & Civic Involvement
Watkiss-Sutherland Inn of the American Inns of Court
Jury finds officer, city not guilty in excessive force case involving Taser
A police officer knocked on the door of a home. When a man opened the door, the officer asked him to identify himself so she could serve an order that required him to leave the premises. The man refused to identify himself and closed the door in the officer’s face. Additional officers were called for support. The man ultimately identified himself to a different officer, but refused to leave and became combative – lunging at the officer. The officer then deployed his Taser. The man filed a civil rights case in U.S. District Court against the officer and the city, alleging excessive force as well as negligent training and supervision. The excessive force claim was tried to a jury, which resulted in a verdict in favor of the office. The negligent training and supervision claims were dismissed on summary judgment.
In hospital sexual assault, claims dismissed against officer, police and city
When a college party got out of hand, the police were called. A party-goer was arrested for public intoxication and public urination. While being transported to the jail, he passed out in the police car. Following protocol, the officer activated emergency medical services and transported the man to the hospital. At the hospital, the officer remained outside the door while care was being administered. While the curtain was drawn, the unconscious plaintiff was sexually assaulted by a hospital employee. The officer observed the assault and contacted the detective responsible for investigating sexual assaults. When the man sobered up, he was informed of the assault and sued the officer, the police department and the city, asserting several civil rights and tort claims. With Tim Bywater’s assistance, all claims were dismissed on summary judgment.
Fair Housing Act and sober living facilities
Sober living homes are group homes for people who are recovering from addiction issues. As such facilities proliferate, local governments increasingly face issues regarding their regulation under state and federal fair housing acts. Tim Bywater frequently collaborates with Jody Burnett to advise local governments on these issues and their legal repercussions.
Outside the office, Tim enjoys trail running, skiing and biking. With three boys, he now devotes a lot of time to youth sports – especially as a youth hockey coach. When he has time, he likes to read fiction – especially work by Cormac McCarthy and Ian MacEwan.