Dallas Divorce Lawyer Michelle May O’Neil

Teaches Other Lawyers About Winning

Michelle May O’Neil, founding partner of Dallas’ O’Neil Anderson family law boutique firm, presented at the Advanced Family Law Conference held in Dallas in August 2009.  O’Neil presented her paper Winning Your Case Before You Go To Trial together with Judge William Harris of the 233rd Family District Court of Tarrant County, Texas.

Here’s an excerpt from the paper:

 Dictionary.com defines a “win” as achieving victory or finishing first in a competition. Many times in family law litigation it is hard to define what constitutes a “win” in any particular case. What really is a “victory”? For some clients the simple act of obtaining the divorce will be considered a “victory”. Others set their standard of a “victory” very high, such as when a client will only be happy if he or she has the child 100% of the time.

Much of “winning” is determined by where the bar gets set to define a win. Establishing achievable goals remains one of the most essential aspects of client relations, as well as “winning” the case.

An additional aspect of “winning” might be to cut short what might otherwise be protracted litigation. This paper aims to review methods of “winning” the case prior to an extended trial on the merits of the case. This paper presumes that “winning” is defined as achievement of the client’s reasonable goals in a quick and efficient manner. This paper discusses various aspects of disposition of a case, both on procedural grounds as well as the merits of a claim, prior to trial. Areas such as jurisdiction, special exceptions, default judgments, summary judgments, declaratory judgments, discovery, sanctions, and pretrial appeal are covered.