About Donna M. Hougen

Experienced and Dedicated Arizona Family Law Attorney

Donna M. Hougen

Family Law Attorney & Founder

Despite the difficulties divorce causes in many family situations, people can find great joy in properly moving forward, moving away from the dysfunction and turmoil of a loveless and angry relationship. While encouraging clients to seek fair and just property and debt distributions, the protection of children is paramount and directing clients in that arena is particularly satisfying and nuanced.

It can be very hard for people who are emotionally involved in a situation to effectively and appropriately secure what they deserve and protect their loved ones. Many times clients are defensive or they feel guilty for wanting to move on, and sometimes they are very scared or have an understanding of what is right that does not comport with the law. In such cases I try to strip down emotional and rationalization barriers with hard core logic and review of the statutes and rules impacting the case to get through to my client and reveal more beneficial ways to handle a situation because I do not want any client of mine to lose a bargaining position or parenting time based on a temporary mental state or to be found unreasonable by the law or unprepared for an application of law to a particular fact pattern.

As a tried and true divorce lawyer, protection of my client and cost-effective solutions is our number one priority. Strategic representation for difficult civil and criminal family law issues, including helping clients to protect their children from abuse and neglect, protecting and keeping estate assets according to the laws of Arizona, simplifying complex property division and transaction issues, and just helping people get through their general marriage issues, domestic violence matters, or drug charges affecting custody, is my passion.

The clients I work with are knowledgeable in the fact that we have done all we could reasonable do to protect their children and their assets, and satisfying their rights and needs related to economic support. At the end of the day, I want my clients to be as healthy as possible under the circumstances, and knowing we have stood by them during this very difficult time while bringing them a true understanding of benefits and burdens they face along the way.

When I am not taking care of clients or on a minor adventure, I am interacting with my staff and associates as well as the community professionally. I volunteer at schools and speak against inappropriate drug and alcohol use, and educate youth about the legal process. I regularly attend educational seminars to learn from and meet with professionals in my field, keeping current on legal issues relevant to my practice. I interact with a large circle of professional peers in various disciplines to aid development of responsible and cost-effective relationships that can assist with specialized issues.

It is my desire to offer my clients a wide variety of representation alternatives from completely customized and personalized representation strictly performed by me to that by an associate overseen by me to limited scope representation and legal assistance on a consultation by consultation basis for the self-represented person with a focus on direction and education often including negotiation assistance, as well as a variety of personalized plans in between. An advance fee is required upon hire, and different attorneys will have different hourly rates based on their experience and speed in handling issue.

Areas of Practice

My areas of practice are relatively diverse, my primary focus is on Arizona Law under Title 25, though I handle real property and personal property division actions under alternative partnership principles and some criminal law matters and juvenile law matters. Some matters I regularly deal with are as follows:

  • Divorce
  • Property Settlement
  • Business Evaluations
  • Spousal Support
  • Family Law
  • Paternity Actions
  • Child Custody
  • Child Support
  • Grandparent Rights
  • Alternative Partnership Agreements
  • Orders of Protection
  • Exclusive Use of the Home
  • Attorney Fees
  • Temporary Orders
  • Contract Law
  • Criminal Law
  • DUI/DWI
  • Juvenile Law
  • General Civil Litigation
  • Civil and Criminal Warrants
  • Civil and Criminal Contempt
  • Injunctions

Admitted to Practice

  • Arizona, 1998
  • U.S. District Court, District of Arizona, 1999

Education

  • University of Arizona, J.D., 1996
  • Arizona State University, B.S., 1993

Professional Memberships

  • State Bar of Arizona
  • Arizona Family Law Association
  • American Bar Association

Biography

  • Born in Anchorage, Alaska
  • Charter Member, Gamma Beta Phi
  • Founder and Past President, Gamma Beta Phi Theatre for promotion of literacy among youth
  • Pilot Member USPHA

Contact Us

When you need an experienced and aggressive divorce and child custody lawyer, call our Mesa family law office at: (480) 535-8422, or contact me online directly through our website form.