R. Scott Downing

R. Scott Downing

Partner, Attorney at Law
Offices: Dallas | Frisco
Tel: 214-273-2400 Email: LinkedIn:

Biography

No two divorces are the same, and no two divorces reach the same resolution. That means that how you achieve a resolution also differs from case to case. R. Scott Downing is a skilled trial lawyer who has tried numerous complex high-dollar property and custody cases. Recognizing the uniqueness of each case and that not every situation requires a courtroom, Scott is also skilled in the use of collaborative law to reach a resolution.

In 2017, Scott was named to The National Law Journal’s Divorce, Trusts & Estates Trailblazers list, the only North Texas family law attorney selected. AV-rated by Martindale-Hubbell, Scott has earned recognition on every Thomson Reuters Texas Super Lawyers list since its inception in 2003, receiving additional recognition among the “Top 100 Texas Super Lawyers” (2009 and 2013-2016) and “Top 100 Dallas/Fort Worth Super Lawyers” (2009-2010, 2013-2016.) He also has been recognized in Best Lawyers in America by Woodward White Inc. each year since 2007, and in the D Magazine list of the Best Lawyers in Dallas in 2014 and 2016. Scott also was named to the list of 500 Most Powerful Business Leaders in Dallas/Fort Worth in 2016 by D CEO Magazine.

He has written extensively for national and statewide publications on various family law topics, including complex characteristic issues, advanced evidence matters, attorney ad litem practice, jurisdictional conflicts, trial presentation and hidden asset cases in preparation for temporary hearings. He also routinely speaks before groups including the Advanced Family Law Course and Marriage Dissolution Course to address family law and evidentiary topics.

Scott’s articles have been published by the State Bar of Texas, The Journal of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, and the Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists. His article “Property Puzzles: Characterization, Tracing, 25 Rules and More” earned honors as the Best Family Law CLE article in 2006.

In 2006 and 2007, he also served as director of the State Bar of Texas Family Law Section’s Family Law Essentials course, and as co-director of the Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists Course in 2007. He has served on the Board of Directors for the Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists and as chairman of the District 1A Grievance Committee. He also was selected to serve as the director of the 2009 Marriage Dissolution Course.

He is a 1991 graduate of the University of Houston Law Center. During law school, he earned American Jurisprudence Awards in contracts and civil trial advocacy in addition to serving as associate editor of the Houston Law Review. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Texas.

Scott has been Board Certified in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization since 1999, demonstrating his ongoing commitment to excellence in this area of law. Board Certification requires continuing education and involvement in the issues of family law, including marriage, adoption, divorce, custody, support and ownership of property acquired before and during marriage.

The routes to resolution may vary from case to case, and for many, as they go through a divorce, the path is obscured during the process. Scott’s experience and expertise help guide his clients to a place where they can see the way to a clearer future.

Areas of Practice

100% Family Law

Certified Legal Specialties

Family Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization, 1999 / Recertified 2004, 2009, 2014 Bar Admissions

Bar Admissions

Texas, 1992

Education

University of Houston Law Center, Houston, Texas

  • J.D. – 1991

Honors: American Jurisprudence Award Contracts

Honors: American Jurisprudence Award Civil Trial Advocacy

Law Review: Houston Law Review, Associate Editor

  • University of Texas, Austin, Texas
  • B.A. – 1988

Published Works

How to Manage a High-Stakes Divorce, Texas Lawyer, February 2017

A Hush-Hush Half-Billion-Dollar Divorce Goes Public, Houston Chronicle, October 16, 2016

Keeping Your Business Together, Cleaner, January 2016

Characterization, Categories; Code; Case Law, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, August 2012

Valuation: Approaches, Assets and Authority, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, August 2010

Property Puzzles: 30 Characterization Rules, Explanations & Examples, University of Texas School of Law Family Law on the Frontlines Conference, June 2009

Understanding Real Value, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, August, 2008

Property Puzzles: Characterization, Tracing, 25 Rules and More (Winner of Best Family Law CLE Article), State Bar of Texas Marriage Dissolution Institute, March, 2006

Use of Social Studies and Psychological Evaluations at Trial (Do New HIPAA and DSM Changes Impact?), Advanced Family Law Course, August 2014

Examining Experts Effectively, University of Texas School of Law, Innovations – Breaking Boundaries in Custody Litigation Seminar, June 2014

Beyond Contempt, Enforcing SAPCR Orders, Advanced Family Law Course, August, 2011

Valuation: Approaches, Assets and Authority, Advanced Family Law Course, August, 2011

Grievances: The Process, Responses and Most Frequent Complaints, University of Texas School of Law Family Law on the Frontlines Conference, June, 2011

Property Puzzles: Characterization, Tracing, 30 Rules and More, Texas Center for the Judiciary Family Law Conference, November, 2009

Characterization Workshop: Big, Small, Usual, and Unique; Mixed Characterization, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, August, 2009

Making Summary Judgment Relevant Again, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, August, 2007

Daubert/Experts, The Ultimate Trial Notebook Course, December, 2006

Property Puzzles: Characterization, Tracing, Texas Advanced Paralegal Seminar, September, 2006

Be Careful What You Ask For, You May Get It; Common Sense Discovery Requests and Responses, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, August, 2006

Being Creative with Unusual Remedies, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Drafting Course, 2005

Property Puzzles: Characterization, Tracing, 25 Rules and More, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, August, 2005

Rubbish or Rembrandt: The Art of Evaluating a Custody Case, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, 2004

Mission Impossible: Choosing and Admitting Expert Witnesses, Ultimate Trial Notebook, Family Law, December, 2004

Recent Developments in Family Law, State Bar College “Spring Training” Course, March 2004

Top Ten Ways to Screw Up a Premarital Agreement, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Drafting Course, 2003

Discovery in Mid-Size Cases Under the New Rules, Civil Discovery Under New Rules, University of Houston, 1999

Creative Decision Making in Custody Arrangements; Psychological Theories; Their Admissibility After Daubert; and Alternatives to Trial, American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, 1998

Family Law Issues That Impact the Professional Athlete, Journal of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Volume 15, No. 2, 1998

Peculiar Characterization Issues Involving Athletes and Entertainers, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, 1997

Dallas Bar Association Case Law Update, Dallas Bar Association, 1997

Pensions, Stock Options & Divorce, TSCPA Conference, 1997

Evidence Without Witnesses, Advanced Evidence and Discovery Institute, 1997

Preparing for the Petitioner’s Financial Temporary Orders Hearing, Marriage Dissolution Course, 1997

Ad Litems, Marriage Dissolution Course, 1996

Attorney Ad Litem and Guardian Ad Litem Practice, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, 1996

Custody Litigation, Case Evaluation, Discovery, Controlling Costs, Trial Strategy, Etc., University of Houston Family Law Practice Institute, 1996

Preparation for and the Direct Examination of Husband (Black Hat) in a Hidden Assets, Fraud, and Breach of Fiduciary Duty Case, TAFLS 10th Annual Trial Institute, 1996

Legislative Changes, Grand Prairie Bar Association, 1995

Classes/Seminars

Business Valuation Panel Moderator: Advanced Family Law Course, August 2013

Course Director: State Bar Annual Meeting – Family Law Program, June 2009

Course Director: Marriage Dissolution Course, April 2009

Co-Course Director: Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists Course, January 2007

Course Director: Family Law Essentials, State Bar of Texas Family Law Section, May 2006 – May 2007

Honors and Awards

Texas Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, Legal Division, 2003 – 2016

Top 100 Lawyers in Texas, Texas Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, Legal Division, 2009, 2013 – 2016

Top 100 Lawyers in Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, Legal Division, 2009 – 2010, 2013 – 2016

The Best Lawyers in America, Family Law, 2007 – 2018

Divorce, Trusts & Estates Trailblazers, The National Law Journal, 2017

Best Lawyers in Dallas, D Magazine, 2014, 2016

Dallas 500, D CEO, 2015

Best Lawyers Under 40 in Dallas, D Magazine, 2004

Best Family Law CLE Article, “Property Puzzles: Characterization, Tracing, 25 Rules and More”, 2006

Marriage Dissolution Course Director, 2009

District 1A Grievance Committee Panel, 2005 – 2008

District 1A Grievance Committee Panel Chairman, 2008 – 2011

Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists Course Co-Director, 2007

Director: “Family Law Essentials.” State Bar of Texas Family Law Section, May 2006; May 2007

 

Professional Associations and Memberships

American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Fellow

Texas Bar Foundation, Fellow

Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists, Board of Directors, 2005 – Present

College of the State Bar of Texas, Member

State Bar of Texas, Family Law Council, Member, 2005 – Present

State Bar of Texas, Family Law Section, Member

State Bar of Texas Collaborative Law Institute, Member

Dallas Bar Association, Family Law Section, Member

American Bar Association, Family Law Section, Member

Annette Stewart American Inn of Court, Treasurer, Barrister

James Publishing, Inc. “Texas Family Law Evidence”, Advisory Board Member, 1998