Our attorneys represent individual, business, corporate, and municipal clients throughout southeastern North Carolina in hearings, mediations, trials, and appeals, before state and federal courts and various dispute resolution associations and groups.

We have extensive experience in the following types of disputes at every level of the judicial system, from the trial court to the highest appellate levels:

The goal of our litigation attorneys is to advise and zealously represent our clients in all disputes in all forums, while at the same time seeking to resolve their matters with a minimum of time, risk, burden and cost to the client.

Our Attorneys Who Focus in this Area:

Christopher K. Behm • Colin J. Tarrant • Brody O’Neal

Civil Litigation FAQs

How long does litigation take?

The process of litigation can vary widely depending on the facts and procedural posture of each case. Typically, civil litigation is a lengthy process and will last months and sometimes years. However, settlements can be reached at any stage of litigation, even up to, through and after trial.

What do I do if I just got served with a summons?

When you have been served with a summons, you must respond within a specific time set out by the Court following the date of service or you may be defaulted. If you are named as an individual, you can respond pro se. But, this comes with many risks, as many important defenses may be waived if they are not asserted. If your business is named as a defendant in any action other than a small claims court proceeding, it is necessary to have an attorney respond as corporations may not represent themselves in North Carolina.

What should I do if a party breaches a contract I have entered?

If a party breaches a contract, you should review the contract to identify the applicable section breached, and to determine if the contract provides a procedure for the breach.

What court can my case be brought in?

There are typically two venue options: State or Federal court. There are also various divisions in both jurisdictions. The location a case may be brought depends on the facts of the case. Most cases may only be filed in State court. However, cases may be filed or removed from State Court to Federal court under two forms of jurisdiction: Subject Matter Jurisdiction or Personal Jurisdiction. Two types of subject matter jurisdiction may qualify a case for Federal Court: diversity jurisdiction or federal question jurisdiction. Diversity jurisdiction occurs when both parties are from a different state and the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000. Federal question jurisdiction applies when the complaint alleges a federal question on its face, meaning the issue(s) to be determined pertain to Federal law and may only be decided by a Federal Court.

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