After three years of law school in Europe, Jessica Foster returned to the United States to continue her legal education. She graduated summa cum laude from Northern Virginia Community College with an Associate’s Degree in Administration of Justice in 2004. She then transferred to George Mason University and graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice in 2006. Law school led her to Lansing, Michigan, where she earned her Juris Doctor degree from Thomas M. Cooley Law School. During her tenure at law school, Attorney Foster focused her studies in trial skills and advocacy and legal writing. She was a member of three national trial teams, traveling around the U.S. to compete in trial advocacy competitions.
Upon graduation, she returned to Virginia, where she was hired as an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney in Frederick County to prosecute cases of domestic violence and crimes against women. After gaining invaluable experience as a prosecutor, Attorney Foster made the switch to private practice and became an associate attorney at Olmstead & Olmstead, P.C.
Five years later, she decided to launch her own law practice, J.H. Foster Law, PLLC. Her time as a solo practitioner was short-lived, as she could not pass up the opportunity to join forces with her friend and esteemed colleague, Katherine McCollam.
Attorney Foster is a member of the Virginia State Bar Association, the Prince William County Bar Association, and the Virginia Women Attorneys Association. She is currently a committee member for the Beat the Odds Banquet hosted every year by the Prince William County Bar Foundation. She serves as a committee member of Judicial Committee tasked by the Virginia Women Attorneys Association to interview potential candidates to the Prince William County bench. Furthermore, she and Ms. McCollam have been selected by the Prince William County Juvenile and Domestic Relations bench to represent Prince William County in its efforts to reform our juvenile justice programs – a cohesive effort with neighboring Northern Virginia jurisdictions – as part of a statewide overhaul of the Department of Juvenile Justice.
Attorney Foster is certified by the Virginia Indigent Defense Commission to accept court appointments for indigent clients, adults or juveniles, who have been charged with a misdemeanor or felony offense. In order to maintain this certification, she is required to complete mandatory continuing legal education training on a regular basis.
Attorney Foster is a former adjunct faculty member of the Northern Virginia Community College where she taught Criminal Law, Evidence, and Procedure at the Manassas campus.
She is a former Guardian ad Litem (GAL) in Prince William County. In this capacity, she served as an independent voice for the juveniles she was appointed to protect. She was tasked with protecting the interests of juveniles caught in the middle of custody and visitation disputes, victims of abuse and/or neglect, juveniles charged with status offenses, and any other matter involving a juvenile where the court believed an independent investigation was needed. As such, Attorney Foster acted as an investigator for the court and was a zealous advocate for the best interests of her juvenile ward.
Within the last few years, she has taken a keen interest in representing undocumented immigrant juveniles who are the victims of abuse, neglect, or abandonment by assisting them to get orders from the juvenile court that they can present to the immigration court to seek Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS), which is a regularization of their immigration status and, ultimately, a pathway to citizenship. In November 2017, she was a panelist speaker at the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) at the University of Maryland Shady Grove in Rockville, Maryland on the subject of Special Immigrant Juvenile Status in Virginia.
Foster McCollam also represents certain Departments of Social Services outside of Prince William County in the capacity of conflict attorney. As such, we fill in when the contract attorney is not available or has a conflict. We have successfully represented the Warren County Department of Social Services in the removal of an abused infant and in an elder law/guardianship proceeding.
Attorney Foster’s current practice areas include:
- Family law, including custody, visitation, petitions for paternity, child support (including DCSE cases), abuse and neglect proceedings involving CPS, CPS investigations, CPS administrative hearings and appeals, termination of parental rights, premarital agreements, separation agreements, and contested and uncontested divorce for both opposite and same-sex marriages.
- Special Immigrant Juvenile Status at the state level for undocumented children facing deportation proceedings.
- Criminal law, including adult and juvenile offenses, felonies and misdemeanors, and police investigations.
- Traffic offenses, such as DUI, reckless driving, driving without a license, driving on a suspended license, ASAP violations, speeding, accidents, and moving violations.
Attorney Foster is currently accepting cases in Prince William County/Manassas, Fauquier County, Warren County, Winchester City/Frederick County, and other jurisdictions on a case-by-case basis.