• Biography

    As an experienced and dedicated appellate lawyer, Karen Precella has secured favorable rulings in all phases of trial and appellate proceedings—from pre-trial summary judgment to post-verdict motions for judgment notwithstanding the verdict to appeals at the intermediate and supreme court levels. Karen, co-chair of Haynes and Boone’s Appellate Practice Group, has briefed and argued numerous cases in the Fifth Circuit and Texas appellate courts. She understands that an appellate practice involves not only an in-depth knowledge and respect of the law but also working together with the trial team to get the best results for the client.

    Karen speaks and writes frequently on appellate issues and has earned a state-wide reputation on jury charge and mandamus procedures through her legal writing and bar service. She served a three-year term as Chair of the State Bar Pattern Jury Charge Committee for the Business Volume, served on the Pattern Jury Charge Oversight Committee, and now serves on the Pattern Jury Charge Committee for the Oil and Gas Volume. Karen has taught jury charge procedures at the Texas College of Judicial Studies and Annual Judicial Conference on numerous occasions. She is a contributing author for two American Bar Association books—A Practitioner's Guide to Appellate Advocacy (Anne Marie Lofaso ed., 2010), and The Class Action Fairness Act: Law and Strategy (2013), and taught legal writing for several years at the Texas A&M School of Law.

    Karen is also committed to bar and community service work in a wide variety of organizations. She has served on the board of editors for the Texas Bar Journal, co-chair of the Appellate Practice Committee of the American Bar Association's Section of Litigation, council member of the State Bar of Texas Appellate Section, and chair of the Tarrant County Appellate and Business Litigation Sections. She is active in the Federal Bar Association as well. Karen currently serves on the Board of the Fort Worth Public Library Foundation and continues to be active with the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce Governmental Affairs Committee and Central Area Council after the end of her Board term. Karen is also the administrative partner of the Fort Worth office of Haynes and Boone.

    Selected Publications and Speeches

    • “Error Preservation: Making a Record Without an Express Written Ruling,” author, Litigation Section of the State Bar of Texas, News for the Bar, October 2020.
    • “Minefields on Appeal,” speaker, TexasBarCLE’s 36th Annual Course Advanced Personal Injury Law, July 30, August 6 and September 3, 2020.
    • “Mandamus Update,” speaker, Litigation Update Institute 2020, Texas Bar CLE, Austin, Texas, January 31, 2020.
    • “Jury Charge Update,” speaker, Advanced Civil Trial Course, State Bar of Texas, San Antonio, Texas, July 18, 2019; Dallas, Texas, August 22, 2019; Houston, Texas, October 31, 2019.
  • Education and Clerkships

    • J.D., Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law, 1991, cum laude; Order of the Coif; Leading Articles Editor, Journal of Air Law and Commerce
    • M.B.A., University of Texas at Arlington, 1983
    • B.S., University of Texas at Arlington, 1979, highest honors
  • Admissions

    • Texas
  • Court Admissions

    • United States Supreme Court
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
    • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas