Joseph R. Messa practices in the Houston, Texas, office of King & Jurgens. He has been a trial lawyer for over thirty years. Joseph has practiced law in private practice and as staff counsel for three liability insurance companies. He has participated, first chair, in all phases of routine to complex litigation matters, primarily in the area of insurance defense, involving both personal and commercial lines, from the initial pleading phase to jury verdict, as well as researching and rendering insurance coverage opinions. Joseph has also defended mass-tort litigation matters, and federal civil rights and employment discrimination cases, which duties, on occasion, included interlocutory appellate practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. He is a trained mediator and has presided over the mediations of litigated cases ranging from routine to complex in nature.

Joseph is a native-born Houstonian. Prior to pursuing his undergraduate and legal studies, Joseph was a member of the Houston Police Department. He received his undergraduate degree in criminal justice from Abilene Christian College (Houston campus) in 1975 and graduated from South Texas College of Law in 1979. While in law school he served as bailiff for the Honor Court and competed in the Giles Sutherland Rich Memorial Moot Court competition. He continues to volunteer his time as a volunteer judge in mock trial and moot court competitions at South Texas College of Law. Joseph is licensed to practice law by the Supreme Court of the State of Texas and is admitted to practice before the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas.

Professional & Community Affiliations

  • Texas Bar Association
  • Houston Bar Association
  • Pro bono mediator, Dispute Resolution Center, sponsored by the Houston Bar Association
  • Volunteer Judge, South Texas College of Law Mock Trial and Moot Court competitions


Martindale-Hubble AV – Preeminent Rated Lawyer (5.0 out of 5)


South Texas College of Law, J.D., 1979

Abilene Christian College, B.A., criminal justice, 1975

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Texas
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