Hankinson LLP has ceased providing legal services effective September 30, 2018. Click here for details and new contact information.

About the Firm


Hankinson LLP’s appellate practice features an unusually strategic approach. Because most of our attorneys began their careers as trial lawyers, we are acutely aware of the ways in which decisions made during discovery and at trial impact an appeal. This is one of the reasons that we are recognized not only for our prowess in all aspects of the post-trial realm, but also as a strategic resource during the pretrial and trial phases of a lawsuit. Our command of appellate law and strategy is the culmination of years of courtroom experience, numerous appearances before federal and state appellate courts, and many close working relationships with clients and other lawyers.


Deborah Hankinson’s ADR Plus suite of services brings another dimension to the value that our firm offers. The concept behind ADR Plus, which grew out of Deborah’s longstanding role as a mediator and arbitrator, is to shine a light on all the opportunities for problem-solving and conflict resolution during the life of a dispute. Thus, ADR Plus extends beyond arbitration and mediation and features facilitative services that include pre-litigation claim assessment, collaboration on key settlement strategies, and guidance on optimizing operative arbitration provisions and the arbitration process.


Our attorneys offer a complementary array of backgrounds. Two of our attorneys are former members of the judiciary. Deborah Hankinson is well known as a former Texas Supreme Court Justice whose stature in the legal community is matched by her role as a sought-after mediator and arbitrator, and ADR-related consultant. Joe Morris, a twenty-year veteran of the Dallas Court of Appeals who also served as a Texas state district court judge, has broad knowledge of all facets of the trial and appeals process.


Each of the additional attorneys at our firm brings equally impressive – and varied – credentials.  Rick Thompson held a key position in the Solicitor General’s office of the Attorney General of Texas and has first-chair experience handling state and federal appeals. Brett Kutnick, who has substantial experience in all phases of business litigation, assists clients in appeals relating to complex business disputes.  In addition to having a command of Texas Supreme Court procedures, Jennifer Stagen frequently works with oil and gas companies on appellate and litigation matters.  And Stephanie Dooley Nelson’s appellate background includes jurisdictional challenges, mandamus petitions, and interlocutory appeals that often involve thorny procedural issues.

For us, the whole is even greater than the sum of the parts.