Plano Divorce Attorney • Plano Custody Attorney • Plano Family Attorney • Plano Grandparent Attorney • Plano Restraining Order Attorney
Divorce and Family Law Attorneys serving Plano, Allen, Frisco, McKinney, Wylie, Murphy, Fairview, Lucas, and surrounding areas.

Jennifer Barnett-LaFleur

Jennifer Barnett-LaFleur was born and raised in El Paso, Texas, and attended El Paso schools from kindergarten through high school, graduating as salutatorian of Hanks High School in 1993. She then attended The University of Texas at El Paso and received a B.S. in Biology with University Honors and an undergraduate research thesis in immunological studies. She was also named the Top 10 Senior in her graduating class. While in college, Ms. Barnett-LaFleur did extensive DNA and immunological research as part of numerous research grants. She regularly used current techniques of DNA amplification, such as the Polymerase Chain Reaction, which is widely seen in criminal forensic analyses and in paternity determinations today. Ms. Barnett-LaFleur has a broad scientific knowledge that is helpful in dealing with expert witnesses, both in criminal and family law trial settings. She went on to graduate from the University of Houston School of Law in 2001 and passed the Texas Bar Exam in May 2002.

Ms. Barnett-LaFleur began her career in law serving as an Assistant District Attorney for Collin County. While at the District Attorney's Office, she prosecuted misdemeanor crimes including DWI, theft, and assault/family violence, trying more than 70 jury trials. This experience prosecuting crimes has provided invaluable insight and strategies for clients of the LaFleur Law Firm. After the District Attorney's Office, Ms. Barnett-LaFleur worked as an associate at a downtown Dallas law firm, Nichols, Jackson, Dillard, Hager & Smith, L.L.P. where she continued serving as a prosecutor for several municipalities and also beginning her civil practice. Eventually, Ms. Barnett-LaFleur left Nichols, Jackson to devote herself full-time to the practice of family law.

Ms. Barnett-LaFleur uses her experience to help clients facing cases with crossovers between criminal, family, and juvenile law. With the experience of over a hundred jury trials, both in criminal and civil law, Ms. Barnett-LaFleur is particularly well-equipped to assist clients dealing with these complicated situations. Divorce proceedings often lead to criminal charges, such as assault/family violence, criminal trespass, or criminal mischief, against one or both parties in the divorce, either as a bargaining tool or many times as a result of tension in the relationship. The Child Protective Services Unit of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services most certainly will intervene where allegations of sexual assault of a child and/or child abuse are made by family members who are pulled in numerous directions by a custody dispute. Passion and anger run high in these cases, and people end up hiring several different attorneys to handle various portions of their legal defense or prosecution. Many family law attorneys don't take criminal defense cases, even though such cases can go hand in hand. Moreover, when legal issues are finally resolved, a cleanup process remains, which may involve an expunction, order for non-disclosure, or other redress.

Ms. Barnett-LaFleur handles criminal and family law cases in Collin, Denton and Dallas Counties. In the past, Ms. Barnett-LaFleur has worked on criminal cases involving teen drinking and driving, drug crimes, assault, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, theft and burglary, public indecency, probation violations, and juvenile offenses. She also has handled family law cases involving adoptions, termination of parental rights, divorce, paternity disputes, child support enforcement, Child Protective Services (both defense and intervention), as well as cases with multiple combinations of the above. In addition to her private law practice, Ms. Barnett-LaFleur has served as a municipal court judge. With experience as a trial attorney (both criminal and civil) and as a judge, she understands the complexity of defending a case on multiple fronts.

Ms. Barnett-LaFleur's goal is to provide you with the highest quality legal services in a timely fashion. She understands that clients come to her experiencing emotions such as uncertainty, fear, panic, anger, and helplessness at the situation. You probably understand that there are hundreds of attorneys out there, but ask: “Who will represent me the best in my particular situation?” “How much is this going to cost?” “What are my options to make this experience just go away?” “Will I lose my job now that I am accused of something I believe I didn't do?” “How will this affect my family?”

Whether you are dealing with a criminal accusation or a family law case, this is a difficult, stressful time for you, and the last thing you need is to spend a tremendous amount of money on the wrong attorney who won't personalize or devote time and needed attention to your case. Family law disputes are some of the most emotional, intensely personal types of cases that people encounter. That should be no surprise, as the foundation of a person's peace and familiarity with their home life are completely altered in such proceedings. Divorces and custody litigation can affect where you will live, how often you are allowed to see your children, how you will spend your paycheck, and may even dictate who can spend the night at your house. And a criminal accusation threatens your very liberty. Accusations of domestic violence, criminal mischief, and interference with a “911” call may be crossover cases that develop out of unpleasant interactions during the divorce process. It has been jokingly said that people display temporary insanity and act in crazy ways when going through a divorce and/or custody battle. But there is an element of truth in such jokes. People act in unusual and unpredictable ways when their security and home life are abruptly disrupted.

At the same time, you need to feel that you are in good hands. You don't want to have to worry about whether your attorney is zealously defending you. Going to a “big name” attorney will probably make you feel more confident, yet zap your funds completely. Unfortunately, as many people find out the hard way, the “big name” often means that you get lost in the shuffle of hundreds of competing cases. Personal attention and care are virtually nonexistent.

Make sure you understand what you are getting into when you hire an attorney, and demand performance out of your attorney. This is especially important if your case is one that requires the extensive use of expert witnesses, such as physicians, psychiatrists, or forensic scientists. This can mean the difference for you between life in prison or an acquittal. The State will have experts in murder and sexual assault cases, and your attorney must be prepared to deal with them.

Ms. Barnett-LaFleur believes that every case is important and requires individual attention. Aggressive representation is paramount to acquiring an acquittal in a criminal case or favorable settlement in a family law situation. The criminal justice system is not designed to care about what is best for you and your family. This entity is pulled in all directions, stretched by competing interests, politics, funding issues, and personal motivations. The “system” is molded to prosecute crime. It is shaped so that the State has the overwhelming advantage. The only way to fight back is by hiring someone who can navigate through the confusion, assess the evidence that exists, and prepare a cogent, plausible defense specific and individual to you.

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