A Family Owned Business

The Hartnett Law Firm is centered around family. The patriarch, James J. Hartnett (“Jim”), began practicing law in Dallas, Texas in 1959 at what would become Turner, Hitchins, McInerney, Webb & Hartnett. From the start of his legal career, Jim focused primarily on litigation. However, in the late sixties, his focus shifted to a more concentrated field: estate and trust litigation. As he worked on building a strong and respected reputation in this new field, his two oldest sons were beginning to follow in his footsteps. Eventually, Will and Jim Jr. both joined their father at Turner Hitchins.

Shortly thereafter, using Jim’s established practice and reputation as a platform, the three set out to begin their own boutique firm practicing probate litigation. They brought with them Donna Spencer, Jim’s long time paralegal, and office administrator. Together the four worked tirelessly to propel the firm into the forefront of the trusts and estates field. In 1988, the firm took the name The Hartnett Law Firm. The firm continued to grow into its name with the addition of two more children to the firm, Jay and Fred. Jim’s daughter, Melinda, began practicing law in Syracuse, New York but joined her father and brothers in 2003.

In 2013, Jim Jr.’s daughter, Tanner, joined the firm, bringing the first of the third generation into the family business. She was soon followed by her cousin Patrick Crim in 2017 and her brother Michael Hartnett in 2018.