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Paul Dennis Key

Criminal defense Attorney at McKinney, TX

4.9   51 reviews
  • State Years
    Texas - TX 27 years
    California - CA 25 years
  • Licensed for 27 years
    State TX
    Acquired 1996
    Eligible to Practice in Texas No misconduct found
  • Licensed for 25 years
    State CA
    Acquired 1998
    Inactive No misconduct found

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

About Paul

Learn Paul’s areas of practice.

Practice area

I  have been practicing law since 1996. After three years of active duty as an Army JAG and another three in the Collin County District Attorney’s office, I went into private practice. Since then my practice has been dedicated to criminal defense, and just about all of my cases are in Collin and Dallas County. I know the DA’s, and I know the judges, and they know me. If you’ve been accused of a crime, call me. I can help you, and I will defend you.

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Paul Dennis Key
3900 S Stonebridge Drive
Suite 502
McKinney, TX, 75070


4.9 / 5.0
  51 customer reviews
Posted by Mark | October 29, 2020
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Just plain Excellent
Paul makes sure you understand all of legal the angles involved in your case. He is a truly a very likeable guy that will work hard to get you the best outcome that he can. I recommend him VERY highly !
Posted by Efren | October 7, 2020
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Best Lawyer in town
A little under two years ago I was pulled over and arrested for possession of marijuana over 4OZ under 5LB and possession of controlled substance over 2G under 4G. I was in a tough situation and I had made the mistake of having my family in the car and that only piled on more with CPS coming in to play. I had never been arrested and when I was charged I was told I could be looking at 2 to 10 years in the federal penitentiary and a fine of no less than $2000 and up to $10000. I thought I was dead in the water. I didn't know the slightest of what to do or where to go for help. I went to about 5 lawyers before I consulted with Paul. Let me tell you, he definitely put my mind at ease informing me that there was little to no chance I would go to the pen, although not all situations are the same and he did say there's always a possibility he was confident in telling me that there would be no jail time involved. That was a blessing! I have 2 jobs and a family to support at home and neither them or I could afford for me to go to jail. Due to Covid-19 my case was pushed back further and further and finally the DA offered me a deal 6 years deferred. Paul said no way in hell we are taking that deal. I had no priors! He fought and fought and fought and got it down to 4 years and only 1800 in fines (Plus probation fees and UA's) but that's standard on a drug charge. You have no Idea of how good of a deal that is for a 3rd degree felony. He was there for me through the whole process and even after I took the plea he was still there to help me out with the process. I give 100% approval/recommendation of having Paul represent you.
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Posted by Dixie | October 7, 2020
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Best of the best
Paul Key has been by far the best attorney I’ve ever had . He always kept me updated with my case and made sure I got the best offer and got my case dismissed without even stepping a foot into a court room. I would Definitely recommend him and would use his services again if ever needed .
Posted by Tina | November 6, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Top notch
I contacted Paul after receiving letter in the mail of something 17 years ago. Paul took care of everything, walked me through what I needed to do, ect. Fast, prompt, professional, top notch, courteous. Just simply a God send.. highly highly recommend for anything you need help with!
Posted by Johnny | March 14, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Helped my son
This review is long overdue. I highly recommend Mr. Key. He represented my older son (was the first time my son got into legal trouble). Mr. Key met with us (and my wife) on several occasions and spent quite a lot of time with us. He is very knowledgeable and especially re: the Collin County courts.
Posted by David | July 9, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Takes care of business
Got arrested for some BS Assault charge back in April of 2016. Never been arrested EVER in my life so I had no earthly idea what to expect. Was looking at possibly 2 years in state jail and fines. After spending a night in Collin County, I contacted his firm and glad I did. No probation and no more jail time. They know all judges and having worked in the system, they know the system! Thanks Paul Key and associates for clearing me!
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Posted by Chris | October 10, 2015
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Very helpful
I would highly recommend working with a lawyer like Paul Key. They're few and far between. Paul helps me out designating some tough legal decisions without financial bias. If only we had more layered like this. Trustworthy, honest, and hard-working these are words I would assign to this firm. Thank you
Posted by Karla | August 13, 2015
Above and Beyond
Mr. Key is one of the best criminal defense lawyers anybody could find and I should know. My son was destined to serve 2 years in prison. Mr. Key changed that to 90 days time served. Mr. Key enabled my son another chance at life.
Posted by brandon | January 27, 2015
legal review
I was facing 6 months in county jail plus probation revocation at the same time last year on a misdemeanor. Mr Key was able to help me avoid the revocation and i only got 6 days instead of 6 months. I would highly recommend Mr Key to anyone who needs legal help. Very professional and helpful
Posted by anonymous | January 26, 2015
Help with a 3 year old felony charge
Mr. Key did a excellent job getting a felony charge dismissed and another reduced to a misdemeanor. I would highly recommend his services to anyone facing a criminal charge. Mr. Key is very knowledgeable in criminal law he gave me great confidence in his abilities. Thanks hope this helps anyone looking for a good criminal attorney.
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Posted by andy | January 22, 2015
A very good Lawyer
Guys Whoever reads this must know that this is a genuine review pertaining to Paul Keys. I was charged with Misdemeanor Class C by the Plano Cops. Paul helped me in explaining the law and the expected charges and helped me make the decision. He managed to not only dismiss the charges but he even ensured that the charges were not brought up. He is very knowledgeable and assisted me greatly. A must use lawyer when you are in trouble with law from a criminal perspective. Unlike most Justice Departments you are guilty and treated guilty even before the charges come up officially. While Paul understood this nature of the justice departments, he assured me and gave me all the time for consultation. His rates were reasonable and not whacky unlike most criminal lawyers. Thank you Andy
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Posted by Matt | January 22, 2015
Great Lawyer, Great friend !
Paul Key did a spectacular job for me in a very hard time in my life ! I would recommend him to anyone! He is fair and to the point, and gets the job done in a timely manner. Thank you Mr. Key for all of your help.
Posted by Evalyne | January 21, 2015
What a blessing
Finding Paul Key was a blessing. I researched and spoke with over 20+ lawyers before I ran into Paul Key. I had a very good feeling when I first spoke with him. He was the only one who personally spoke with me, instead of some rude assistant, without charge before making a commitment. He kept me informed of his progress and the costs at all times. My case involved an issue, with what my previous lawyer at the time failed to do, me unaware of the language used by lawyers did not identify it at the time. He spent several hours going through my files and explaining the language to me thoroughly what had happened, in addition, provided me with options on how to clean this up. In August of 2014 he was successful in getting the original judgement set aide and a new judgment was entered, that allowed for expungment in the future. We are now planning on the next steps to expungment. I would recommend him to my closest family and friends.
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Posted by anonymous | January 18, 2015
I have been pleased with the approach from the lawyer. Firstly he listens to our issue and then he understands the issue by asking questions and then he suggests the different solution. He also suggests the best solution that suits our condition and it really worked out. Its unbelievable that he got my cases resolved in first earing and I was so happy that everything went good because of him.
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Posted by anonymous | January 17, 2015
Highly Recommend!
Paul is hands down one of the best lawyers in the Collin County, Tx area. His law expertise and aggressive attitude makes him a perfect fit to tackle any case you are dealing with heads on. He is professional and will take care of your business promptly and effectively. He helped me out in so many ways. Couldn't praise this guy more. Highly recommend him to anybody that is looking for a lawyer.
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Posted by Mark | January 17, 2015
Never Once Worried or Had a Doubt. Painless law?
As someone who unfortunately in life has had better than my share of scrapes with law enforcement and is fairly knowledgeable of the system and it's deficiencies, for maybe the second time in my adult life I felt that I had "them" out gunned and knew I had nothing to worry about. Paul actually heard my side of the story and as a very knowledgeable and capable lawyer, he worked with me to develop my defense so that the ADA didn't stand a chance really. And what really sold me was although extremely confident, Paul would admit when he didn't know and would find out without blowing smoke. Most attorneys will tell you one thing to appear like they do know and will clean it up later. And you won't get that from Paul. Although each and every case is different so im not going to promise you my same results, but you can count on him without doubt. And if he says not to worry and he will get it taken care of, scratch that off your list because its done and honestly better in my opinion than the others hands down. Take it from someone who couldve just as easy be handwritting this while settng at a stainless steel tabletop right at this moment. But thankfully isnt. Dont don't listen to friends or cellies or buddies. If you want to stay free, then call Paul Key. Paul's you're Key to staying free. I said it twice so you'll pay attention. Thanks Paul.
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Posted by anonymous | March 26, 2014
Highly Efficient
I hired Mr Key for a Class A misdemeanor charge by City of Plano for Domestic violence. The defense proposed a 2 year probation with bunch of other things. Mr Key did not settle for it, instead chose to go for trial and rightfully he got the case dismissed. I am so glad that I made the right choice. He is an extremely honest, sincere, diligent and an effective lawyer. It was no brainer for me but to hire him to process my divorce case. I would highly recommend him.
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Posted by Craig | January 30, 2014
Paul Key is an Excellent Attorney
Paul was an excellent representative for my case. He and his staff are very helpful, professional, and efficient. Paul Key will be the one I will call if in the future I ever need legal counsel in the DFW area.
Posted by anonymous | January 30, 2014
Possession of Marijuana , dropped to paraphernalia
Paul Key helped me with my possession charge, he was easy to work with and very reliable! I was able to get the charge dropped and soon get it off my record. I recommend him to anyone needing an attorney!
Posted by Michael | January 28, 2014
This was the best choice...
Paul handled my DWI charge very well. He knew the risks and the best and fastest process to get my license back and kept me from spending time and money on probation. I recommend Paul Key because he knows the system and the best way to get you out of trouble.
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AVVO RATING 9.6 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Criminal & Capital Defense
  • Law Office of Paul D. Key, P.C.
  • 2013 - Present
  • Criminal Defense Attorney
  • Law Office of Paul D. Key, P.C.
  • 2003 - Present
  • Criminal Defense & Criminal Appellate Attoney
  • Law Office of Paul D. Key, P.C.
  • 2005 - 2013
  • Chief Prosecutor, Domestic Violence
  • Collin County District Attorney
  • 2001 - 2003
  • Prosecutor
  • Collin County District Attorney
  • 2000 - 2001
  • Captain, JAG, Prosecutor
  • United States Army
  • 1999 - 2000
  • Special Assistant U.S. Attorney
  • U.S. Attorney, Puerto Rico
  • 1999 - 2000
  • Captain, JAG, Operational Law
  • United States Army
  • 1998 - 1998
  • JAG 1st Lieutenant
  • United States Army
  • 1997 - 1997
View all work experience


  • St Mary's University of San Antonio
  • MA - Masters
  • 1996
  • St. Marys University School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1996
  • San Diego State University
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 1992

Legal Cases

  • Assault Family Violence
  • Not guilty
  • Assault/Family Violence
  • Charge Reduced
  • Assault/Family Violence
  • Not Guilty
View all legal cases


  • McKinney Family Violence Defense
  • President
  • 2015 - Present
  • Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
  • Member
  • 2014 - Present
  • Collin County Capital Defense Lawyers
  • Chair, Scientific Evidence
  • 2014 - Present
  • Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
  • Treasurer/Secretary
  • 2012 - 2013
  • Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
  • Member
  • 2003 - 2011
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • Spanish
  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Cum Laude
  • St. Mary's University, School of Law
  • 1996
  • Scholastic Excellence in Criminal Law
  • Corpus Juris Secundum
  • 1994


  • A Guide to the Texas Transportation Code
  • A Guide to the Texas Transportation Code
  • 2002

Speaking Engagements

  • Collin County Capital Defense Dinner
  • Scientific Evidence in Capital Defense
  • 2015
  • 3CDLA Monthly Luncheon
  • The Dangers of Court-Appointmented Lawyer System
  • 2004

Attorney endorsements

Received (11)
Given (6)
Endorse Paul
Criminal defense Attorney | Feb 07
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Paul is the type of lawyer who prosecutors hate to love. They hate him because he passionately defends his clients until he gets what he wants, but they love him because he does it with his wit and humor that makes it easy to give him what he wants. I am speaking as a former prosecutor who went against him for many years. Paul is a great lawyer."
Unknown Attorney | Jan 09
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Oct 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Unknown Attorney | Feb 10
Relationship: Other
"Highly respected and overall a great attorney. I endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Feb 08
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. It is very clear from his experience, contributions and reviews that Mr. Key is extremely knowledgeable and highly competent. I wouldn't hesitate recommending him."
Unknown Attorney | Feb 06
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Feb 05
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. He works hard for his clients, and gets results."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jun 07
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse Paul. He is a highly skilled attorney that is well respected in the legal community."
Criminal defense Attorney | Nov 12
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Paul is a great attorney; very knowledgeable and aggressive in his representation of his clients."
Criminal defense Attorney | May 04
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Paul is one of the most tenacious and creative litigators that I know. He has a great knowledge criminal law, and consistently uses that knowledge to achieve great results for clients."
Criminal defense Attorney | Apr 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse Paul Key as a criminal defense attorney. I couldn't name a more aggressive, tenacious and thorough attorney practicing in Collin County."
View more endorsements
Criminal defense
Criminal defense
Divorce and separation
Criminal defense