Cottrell Fletcher & CottrellPC


5845 Richmond Highway, Suite 800
Alexandria, VA 22303

703-836-2770    |     703-329-1100


U.S. News--Best Lawyers "Best Law Firms" 2010-2019

We have been in that publication for multiple years since 2010 and including 2016 most recently as Tier 1 in the family law section in the Washington, D.C, Metro area.

88 Top Divorce Lawyers February 2009

Breaking Up is Hard to Do
By Kim Isaac Eisler and Leslie Milk

Here are the top 25 divorce lawyers ranked in order. The best of the rest are ranked in alphabetical order.

James Ray Cottrell

Cottrell Fletcher Bartol & Cottrell
Alexandria (703-836-2770)

4. A firebrand with 31 years' experience, this is the guy you want at your side in Virginia courts. Often the first pick in contentious cases, he's not the type to settle, so have your wallet open.

The Best of the Rest

David Fletcher

Cottrell Fletcher Bartol & Cottrell
Alexandria (703-836-2770)

Cottrell Fletcher Bartol & Cottrell
Alexandria (703-836-2770)

Northern Virginia Magazine December 2018

James Ray Cottrell is listed in the Northern Virginia Magazine Top Divorce Lawyers for 2009.

James Ray Cottrell
Cottrell Fletcher Bartol & Cottrell
801 N. Fairfax St., Suite 404, Alexandria; 703-836-2770; As one nominating attorney put it, virtually everyone on this list has battled with James Ray Cottrell at some point. Hard-nosed, ferocious and boasting decades of experience and a resume filled with honors and accolades, Cottrell handles only contested divorces, but that doesn’t mean he wants to go to court—only that he is prepared to play hardball over financial aspects of a case, such as assets and spousal support.
Hourly rate: $565

Big Guns December 2007

Washington lawyers may tend to dress alike, but they're not all the same when dealing with problems. Here are 30 of the very best - plus 800 more who are close behind. Hang on to the list - when you really need a lawyer, you might want one of these.

By Kim Isaac Eisler

Honey, It's Over
Divorce hurts. These people can help. Prenuptially, too

James Ray Cottrell

Top Lawyers December 2004

Washington is home to some of the world's bet lawyers. Here are the top 30—plus 750 who are right behind them. Save the list - you never know when you’ll be arrested, get served with a subpoena, need a new will, get a divorce, or worse.

By Kim Isaac Eisler

Divorce & Family Law
With divorce rates hovering at nearly 45 percent, most people are more likely to do business with a divorce lawyer than with any other type of attorney. These lawyers can assist with pre-nups, child-custody cases, and separation agreements. Here is a batch of good ones to choose from...

James Ray Cottrell

Breaking Up Isn't Hard to Do February 2004

But It Can Be Painful - And Expensive. That's Why You Want a Divorce Lawyer Who Can Guide You Through the Ordeal. Here are 52 of Washington's Best.

By Kim Isaac Eisler

6. James Cottrell. A tough-minded graduate of Virginia Military Institute, Jim Cottrell has emerged as one of the aces of the Virginia divorce bar. It's hard to toe the line between being a fierce legal presence and being a "bomber." Few people do it better than this well-prepared litigator who lets his cases do the talking. Fellow attorneys say Cottrell is more inclined than most to take a case into court — he's considered a better litigator than negotiator. He tends to cost clients a little more because he leaves no stone unturned. Colleagues call him "frighteningly smart." And losing is not part of his personality.

Divorce, Washington-Style March 2000

Breaking Up a Marriage Has Always Been Hard To Do. Now It's More Complicated Than Ever, so Finding the Right Attorney is Important. Here are Washington's 50 Top Divorce Lawyers.

By Kim Isaac Eisler

12. James Cottrell. A graduate of Virginia Military Institute who was born in the coal country of southwestern Virginia, Cottrell is one of the very best of the hard-nosed tough guys who practice in Northern Virginia. Most of his clients have already been to at least one lawyer by the time they hire Cottrell and are often at wits' end. Cottrell, 47, tells them right up front that all the case can be about is money — he will not be party to exacting retribution from a spouse. Clients who follow that simple dictum usually come out ahead. His no-nonsense approach has been attractive to such high-profile clients as the late Redskins owner Jack Kent Cooke. Cottrell has been happily married to Penelope Cottrell since 1977.

Divorce October 1995

Is Your Marriage Falling Apart? Before You End It, Here are Ways to Save It — and Good Divorce Lawyers Who Can Help You End It Without Destroying the Family. Lawyers Not So Friendly

Here are ten successful divorce lawyers considered bombers by their peers:

By Leslie Milk

4. James Cottrell. Marty Gannon's partner is every bit as hard-nosed as he is and sees the courtroom as a gladiator's ring. Cottrell, said by some peers to be among the top-five courtroom lawyers in Washington, recently popped up in Fauquier County as the latest in a series of lawyers representing much-married Redskin owner Jack Kent Cooke.

The Terminators July 1992

Divorce Lawyers Come in All Shapes, Sizes, and Types. Whether You Need a Rat, a Tiger, or a Teddy Bear, Here are 22 of the Area's Best.

By Emily Couric

James Cottrell. Cottrell is Virginia-born and -bred. His Southern heritage echoes in every sentence; he seems to have walked off the set of the TV series I'll Fly Away. He says he always wanted to practice in Old Town Alexandria or Leesburg, so he obviously knew where he'd best fit in.

Cottrell says he wanted to work with "a grizzled trial veteran, someone ferocious and tenacious." He found his ideal mentor, Martin Gannon, by leafing through a listing of fellow Virginia Military Institute grads. The two hit it off immediately, and today they remain effusive members of a mutual-admiration society.

The younger lawyer has learned well from his senior partner, building his own reputation as a meticulous, well-prepared courtroom advocate. He sees himself as a "savior and a gladiator." And like Gannon, he embraces a philosophy of loaded guns advocacy. "In this business," says Cottrell, "you have to be prepared to repay unkindness in kind."

Virginia and Washington D.C. Super Lawyers multiple year listings

Super Lawyers is published in all 50 States and the District of Columbia. In 2006, our firm has had one attorney listed in one edition (Virginia) in the Super Lawyer category. In 2007, we had listings in both the Virginia and Washington D.C. editions. In 2010, the firm had two listings as Super Lawyers. We also have multiple listings as Rising Stars for family law category as well.

For the Super Lawyer listings for James Ray Cottrell and John K. Cottrell search here


"Virginia Practice, Family Law: Theory, Practice and Forms", (Updated annually as part of the Virginia Practice series™)

By: Lawrence D. Diehl and James R. Cottrell and Dale Cecka

This family law treatise presents the existing Virginia “black letter law” and also discusses the law’s underlying rationale and its practical application in court. When Virginia precedent is outdated or lacking, the family law trends in other jurisdictions are discussed, and the authors suggest where Virginia family law ought to be in the future.

The Best Lawyers in America

Best Lawyers is the oldest and most respected peer-review publication in the legal profession. For a quarter century, we have helped lawyers and clients find legal counsel in unfamiliar jurisdictions or unfamiliar specialties.

Best Lawyers compiles lists of outstanding attorneys by conducting exhaustive peer-review surveys in which thousands of leading lawyers confidentially evaluate their professional peers. In the U.S., Best Lawyers publishes an annual referral guide, The Best Lawyers in America, which includes 41,419 attorneys in 126 practical areas, covering all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

James Ray Cottrell, and John K. Cottrell are listed in the Best Lawyers publication under Family Law Specialty. Click here to search listing

Home     |      Services     |     Attorneys     |      About Us     |      Contact Us
©2021Cottrell Fletcher & Cottrell PC