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Debra Ann Hockett Clark

Divorce and separation Attorney at West Des Moines, IA

5.0   3 reviews

also known as Hockett-Clark Law Firm

  • Licensed for 31 years
    State IA
    Acquired 1993
    Active No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Debra

Learn Debra’s areas of practice.

Practice areas
  1. Divorce and separation
    My practice includes divorce, modifications, contempts, child custody, child support and step-parent adoptions. I also am trained in collaborative divorce law which enables clients to get divorced without having the court make decisions for them which is often a less expensive option

    32 years, 1,000 cases

  2. Child custody
    I have extensive trial experience litigating custody cases. I have insight in what the judges are looking for when deciding custody cases and how best to present your case at trial.

    32 years, 100 cases

  3. Child support
    The Iowa Supreme Court issues child support guidelines. However, the amount of child support is significantly impacted by the variables that are put into the calculations. There can also be a request to the court for a deviation in the child support guidelines if there is good cause. The most difficult cases are when someone is self-employed or under-employed. I have the experience to use the correct figures to make sure that child support is fair and accurate.

    32 years, 500 cases

  4. Family
    I offer the alternative of Collaborative Law. I have practiced in the area of collaborative law (parties agree to resolve their divorce without the court making the decision) for the past 15 years.

    17 years, 60 cases

Married for 32 years and the mother of two boys and one girl, when I am not interacting with clients, attorneys and judges, with whom I have developed lasting professional relationships, I am often running my kids, enjoying movies and playing with our two English Springer Spaniels.  I am a sports memorabilia collector, a passion I share with my husband, I have met and received autographs from baseball greats Ted Williams, George Brett, Steve Garvey and Catfish Hunter, among countless others. An avid traveler, I have enjoyed trips to San Diego, New Orleans, the Grand Canyon, Bahamas and many other destinations. The best trip to date was our recent family vacation to Disney World. I enjoy movie marathons. My favorite films include Raiders of the Lost Ark, Silence of the Lambs, The Sound of Music and Forrest Gump.

Hailing from a small town south of Des Moines, complete with one traffic light, a grocery store and laundromat, my family law practice mirrors my homegrown upbringing—family and community come first. My father was a truck driver and my mother was a homemaker who instilled in me a strong work ethic. I was the first college graduate in my family. My personal motto is: treat others as you would want to be treated yourself. My husband and I were licensed pre-adoptive foster parents for seven years.

In 1993, after graduating law school, I began my family law practice. My philosophy is direct: every client deserves legal representation that is equal parts compassion and straightforwardness. I always ensures that my client’s needs are heard and respected. Often called a financial bean counter by colleagues due to my thoroughness, I am a sole practitioner, which means my clients only work with me. I view my family law practice as a facilitator allowing families to begin the healing process. I provide special counsel for divorcing parents to ensure that their children are not adversely affected by the separation/divorce process.

Trained as a Family Law Mediator (2004) and currently a mediator for family law matters.  I understand that clients come to my office during times of emotional turmoil. A firm supporter of Collaborative Law, my goal is to help client's reach resolution without going to court. I always provide an empathetic, accurate assessment of the facts to ensure each client arrives at the best possible solution.

Receiving my undergraduate degree from Grand View College in Des Moines in 1988, I graduated Washburn University School of Law in Topeka, Kansas in 1992. I have been a member of the Iowa State Bar Association since 1993. Additionally, I was the co-editor of the Family Law Newsletter for the Iowa State Bar Association from (1997 to 2002).  I served on the Polk County Bar Association Board of Directors 2009-2013, PCBA Executive Board Secretary 2017-2019, PCBA Vice President 2019-2020, PCBA President-Elect 2020-2021, PCBA President of the PCBA 2021-2022, Co-chair of PCBA Solo and Small Law Firm Committee (2015 to present), ISBA Section Counsel for the Family and Juvenile Law committee 2014 to present, ISBA Board of Governors from 2013 to 2017 and 2022 to present, Master in Jack Levin Family Law Inns of Court 2019 to present. I am also a member of the Polk County Women Attorney's Association and the Iowa Organization of Women Attorneys. 

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Hockett-Clark Law Firm
5550 Wild Rose Ln Ste 4010
West Des Moines, IA, 50266-5304

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5.0 / 5.0
  3 customer reviews
5 Star
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1 Star
Posted by Julie | January 31, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Highly recommend!
I was given Debra Hockett Clark's name as their top recommendation from a local Des Moines attorney of a different discipline. Debra and I worked together through my very lengthy and ugly divorce that ultimately went to court. To do over again, I would not change a thing and am incredible thankful I had Debra by my side every step of the way. Debra has very high ethics, is extremely organized and always on top of every last detail that both she and I needed to be doing. She is extremely professional and is highly respected by her competition, the court system and their staff. This was very evident to me as we went through the trial process and the interaction others had with her. Unlike many divorce attorneys, Debra does exactly what is needed and the very best for the client, as not to incur extra charges or expenses. She is extremely knowledgeable and always educated me/gave insight on her recommendations of approach and strategy with what we were doing. She is always very well prepared and was a relentless advocate for me and my situation. I have since recommended her to every friend, acquaintance and client who is in need of someone who is very aggressive, yet professional and does the right thing all of the time. I highly recommend Debra and would use her without a doubt, should I have that need in the future.
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Posted by anonymous | January 11, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Will fight for you
Debra is a very knowledgeable divorce and child custody lawyer. One of the main reasons I think she is a great lawyer is because she tells it like it is. I didn’t always like what she told me to do but I did it. My situation might be different from most. I was a father of 4 and had primary custody of my children. My ex-wife, after I had remarried and moved on, started calling DHS routinely on us. Debra always handled all of these complaints directly. My ex-wife would take us back to court yearly for unfounded complaints. After the 3rd time Debra had added to my decree if petitioner files and looses the case they will be responsible for all court and lawyer fees. This helped keep me out because The court had always ruled against her. The last instance the court awarded me all of my legal fees because none of my ex-wife’s allegations were proven. this stopped all further court cases. If I was doing something Debra though would negatively effect me she told me to stop. She is an upfront and honest lawyer. She tells you how it is whether you like it or not.
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Posted by Kim | January 10, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Debra Hockett Clark
Debra was great! She was always quick to get back with me on my questions and concerns. She always explained everything in full detail.


  • Free Consultation 60 minutes
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card


AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Owner
  • Hockett-Clark Law Office
  • 1993 - Present


  • Washburn University School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1992
  • Grand View College
  • BS - Bachelor of Science
  • 1988


  • Iowa State Bar Association
  • Board of Governors Member
  • 2022 - Present
  • Polk County Bar Association
  • Co-chair of the Solo and Small Law Firm Committee
  • 2014 - Present
  • Polk County Women Attorneys
  • Member
  • 1993 - Present
  • Iowa Organization of Women Attorneys
  • Member
  • 1993 - Present
  • Iowa State Bar Association, Family Law Committee
  • Member
  • 1993 - Present
  • Polk County Bar Association, Family Law Committee
  • Member
  • 1993 - Present
  • Polk County Bar Association
  • President
  • 2021 - 2022
  • Iowa State Bar Association
  • Board of Governors
  • 2013 - 2015
  • Polk County Bar Association
  • Board of Directors
  • 2009 - 2022
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Peer Review Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2018
  • Peer Review Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2013


  • Iowa State Bar Association publication
  • Family Law Quarterly Newsletter
  • 2002

Attorney endorsements

Received (1)
Given (0)
Endorse Debra
Child custody Attorney | Sep 02
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Debra is extremely knowledgeable in family law issues. She works tirelessly for her clients and communicates regularly to keep them informed on the progress of the case and to counsel them on legal strategies. Debra's work is extremely thorough and no one works harder to be prepared for trial. She has been a solo practitioner for more than 20 years and handles your case every step of the way. She is accessible to her clients and is compassionate about practicing law."
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West Des Moines Divorce and separation Lawyer Debra Ann Hockett Clark
Debra Ann Hockett Clark
Divorce and separation Attorney
West Des Moines, IA
Licensed for 31 years
Free Consultation