James Max Kennedy

Location:
Houston, Texas
Phone:
713-574-9412
866-428-2472 (Toll-Free)
Fax:
713-228-0034
Email:

I am a fourth generation Texan born in Dallas in 1972. I graduated from St. Thomas' Episcopal School here in Houston and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of St. Thomas. After gaining a couple years of practical experience in a banking management program, I attended Thurgood Marshall School of Law at Texas Southern University. After my first year of law school, I worked as a full-time law clerk at the Fort Bend County District Attorney’s Office assisting in felony trial preparation and appellate brief writing. While I found the experience very educational, I knew that I never wanted to be a prosecutor, marking my convictions on a scorecard. The next year, in my criminal trial advocacy class, taught by none other than former state senator Craig Washington, guest speaker, Kent A. Schaffer, a master of criminal trial litigation, lectured on how to cross exam a government snitch. It was at that moment that I knew that defending citizens accused of crimes was the area of law that I wanted to master. Within a month (7 years ago now), I was offered a position as a full time law clerk for David R. Bires, a brilliant legal mind, working at the criminal law boutique of Bires & Schaffer.

I had the honor of clerking for Bires & Schaffer throughout my second and third year of law school gaining valuable experience and insight into being a powerful, successful criminal defense lawyer. After becoming licensed to practice law, I was given the privilege of staying with Bires & Schaffer as an associate attorney. I have been there ever since. I have spent my law career defending our citizens accused of crimes by the government. I pride myself when I say that I have never prosecuted or sent another fellow man to prison. I feel that ever person accused of a crime deserves zealous representation and I have gladly taken on the challenge of aggressively defending each and every person that I represent. As the famous criminal trial lawyer, Tony Serra, so eloquently stated, “I continue to battle for more freedom for more people through law!”

My practice is dedicated to representation of all areas of federal and state criminal litigation. I am experienced in defending individuals in a vast array of state criminal law prosecutions ranging from driving while intoxicated (DWI), probation violations to capital murder. I am also experienced in representing individuals in all areas of federal criminal law ranging from money laundering and drug conspiracy prosecutions to white collar crimes. My practice includes representing individuals in front of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) – Parole Division. Additionally, I have extensive experience in representing juveniles charged with engaging in delinquent conduct. I am currently licensed to practice in the following courts:

  • State Courts in Texas
  • United States District Court – Southern District
  • United States District Court – Northern District

Working in one of the most prestigious criminal defense law firms in the Unites States, I am surrounded by the best and brightest minds in the field with over 100 years of combined experience. Due to my diverse, extensive background and experience as well as the ability to associate with my fellow colleagues at Bires & Schaffer, I am able to offer a complete, comprehensive service as a criminal defense lawyer. I am based out of Houston, Harris County, but I handle criminal cases both state and federal all over the state and the country. I have personally defended individuals in federal and state courts in Alpine, Lubbock, Laredo, Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, San Antonio, New Braunfels and San Marcos, Texas just to name a few. In any given week, it is not uncommon for me to appear in court in Galveston, Conroe, Richmond and Houston to represent my clients. Out of the state, I have been admitted to practice pro hac vice in California, Florida, Georgia and South Carolina.

I am a member of the State Bar of Texas and I am either currently or formerly a member of the Harris County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, National Association of Criminal defense Lawyers, American Association for Justice, Houston Young Lawyers Association and the American Bar Association.

When I am not in the courtroom or at the office preparing for court, I enjoy spending time at home and away with my best friend and wife, Alexis, and our children.

Houston Criminal Lawyer

Areas of Practice

  • Federal and State Criminal Litigation
  • White Collar Crimes
  • Drug Possession & Conspiracy Prosecutions
  • Money Laundering
  • Grand Jury Investigations
  • R.I.C.O. Prosecutions
  • D.W.I. (Driving while Intoxicated)
  • A.L.R. (Administrative License Suspension)
  • T.D.L. Suspensions
  • Occupational / Restricted Driver's License
  • Probation Violations / Revocations
  • Parole Hearings / Revocation Hearings / Blue Warrants
  • Juvenile Criminal Prosecutions
  • Criminal Records Expunctions (Cleaning Records)
  • Petition For Non-Disclosure (sealing Records)
  • Juvenile Record Sealing
  • State / Federal Criminal Appeals
  • Post Conviction Writs of Habeas Corpus
  • Motions For New Trial
  • Bond reductions
  • Asset Seizure and Forfeiture
  • Personal Injury Litigation

Litigation Percentage

  • 100% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • Texas, 2001
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of Texas, 2001
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Texas, 2006

Education

  • Texas Southern University Thurgood Marshall School of Law, Houston, Texas
    • J.D. - 2001
  • University of St. Thomas, Houston, Texas
    • B.A. - 1995
    • Major: Psychology
    • Minor: Biology

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Texas Bar Association
  • Harris County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
  • Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
  • National Association Of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • American Association for Justice
  • Houston Young Lawyers Association
  • American Bar Association

Pro Bono Activities

  • American Cancer Society
  • Park People

Fraternities/Sororities

  • Phi Alpha Delta