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Civil Litigation

Is my general contractor licensed?

It is critical that you research any potential general contractors you are thinking about hiring to build or remodel your home. In addition to obtaining references from other satisfied customers, you need to make sure that the general contractor is actually licensed by the sate of North Carolina. We often represent individuals who have spent tens of thousands – and in some instances hundreds of thousands – to repair work managed by a general contractor who was never licensed in North Carolina. T...
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Is my non compete agreement enforceable in North Carolina?

Non-compete agreements are increasingly used by employers throughout North Carolina. They are most commonly used with key employees, such as executives or salespeople, to prevent them from going to work for a competitor and taking business with them. When an employee leaves his job, a valid non-compete agreement will prevent him from working for a competitor for a certain period of time, usually within a set geographic area. Non-compete agreements are not viewed favorably under North Carolina...
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What is contributory negligence in North Carolina?

North Carolina is one of the few states that still has “pure” contributory negligence. This means that, if you are involved in an accident in North Carolina, and it is determined that you were even 1% at fault for the accident, you cannot recover against the other party for any damages you received in the accident. The North Carolina Supreme Court has explained the doctrine of contributory negligence as follows: Every person having the capacity to exercise ordinary care for his own safety ag...
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Can a child be negligent in North Carolina?

The answer depends on the age of the child. North Carolina has developed what is known as “the rule of sevens” when determining whether a child is negligent or contributorily negligent. Children are divided into three groups depending on their age: Under seven: A child under seven-years-old is legally incapable of negligence under North Carolina law. Between seven and fourteen: Between the ages of seven and fourteen, a minor is presumed to be incapable of negligence. This presumption may...
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Why won’t the insurance company accept my claim?

The insurance companies for the at-fault driver are not in the business of paying claims unless they believe their insured is legally responsible for the accident and that your claimed injuries are related to the accident. They will conduct a full investigation of how the accident happened, which will include talking to their insured and trying to talk to you. If they talk to you about the accident, they will usually try to get you to say something that will prove harmful to your case. That is w...
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Understanding Automobile Insurance in North Carolina

When you are injured in an automobile accident in North Carolina, you need to understand the critical role insurance plays in determining your legal options. The following is a general overview of the various types of insurance that may be at issue. What is General Liability Insurance? General liability insurance is the insurance that protects the at-fault driver when they are involved in an accident. Under North Carolina law, a general liability insurance policy is required to have minimum co...
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What to expect after a car accident

You have just left your house and are heading to work. You are thinking about all the things you need to get done that day. You have just stopped at a red light when, suddenly, something slams in the back of your vehicle. When you wake up, you are lying on a stretcher with paramedics around you. What just happened? Whether you are involved in a relatively minor accident or a more serious one, there are several important things that you can do to protect yourself legally and to preserve eviden...
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Challenging a Will in North Carolina

Challenging a will
Losing a loved one can be one of the most challenging events in our lives. The grief experienced at the loss is often compounded when it is discovered that someone took advantage of your loved one’s mental or physical state to change their will. When that happens, there are specific steps you can take to challenge the validity of the will. How does a will get challenged? Once a will is submitted for probate with the clerk of court, an “interested party” can file a document with the clerk calle...
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What are “mediation” and “arbitration?”

Mediation is an informal and confidential way for people to resolve disputes with the help of a neutral third party – a “mediator” – who is trained to help people discuss their differences. The mediator (who often is an attorney or a retired judge) has no power to decide or rule on the dispute.  Instead, the mediator’s goal is to help the parties themselves find the common ground necessary to reach a settlement.  Most civil actions filed in the Superior Court Division of state court or in federa...
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Attorneys’ fees, court costs, and other expenses – how much will this cost?

We offer clients a variety of fee arrangements that vary based upon the nature and complexity of the particular matter that we are asked to handle.  Certain types of matters, such as the preparation of estate plans and minor traffic law infractions, are typically handled on a fixed fee basis.  Other kinds of cases, including most civil litigation matters, normally are undertaken based on an hourly fee.  Still other kinds of cases – including but not limited to personal injury matters – may be ha...
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