• 26 May 2020 3:06 PM | Deleted user

    The Special Appellate Candidates' Issue of The Resource is now available! Please visit the link below to read up on all the candidates running for North Carolina Supreme Court and Court of Appeals.

    2020 Appellate Issue of The Resource

  • 26 May 2020 2:00 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    The North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys (“NCADA”) will hold a Judicial Candidates' Forum on Friday, June 12, 2020 from 10:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. via Zoom.  The Forum will feature judicial candidates running in statewide elections for seats on the North Carolina Supreme Court and the North Carolina Court of Appeals. The appellate races are statewide races that impact all citizens of North Carolina.

    Sixteen candidates seek election for eight open appellate level judicial seats - three seats on the North Carolina Supreme Court and five seats on the North Carolina Court of Appeals. A special appellate candidates publication providing information about each candidate may be found here.

    This year's Judicial Candidates' Forum will be held virtually via Zoom closing out the 43rd Annual Meeting.  

    The Forum gives members of the public and the bar a rare opportunity to learn about the candidates who wish to serve the state at the appellate court level. Each candidate will have the opportunity to answer a question germane to the members of the civil defense trial bar and to briefly discuss his or her qualifications for the position.

    The NCADA is a statewide association of lawyers defending the interests of individuals and businesses in North Carolina. For more information about the NCADA or the Judicial Candidates' Forum, please contact the Association office at 919-239-4463 or


  • 22 May 2020 12:31 PM | Deleted user

    Lynette asked if I would provide a brief update on what is happening at DRI during these trying times, and I am happy to do so. 

    First, we hope you, your families, and your colleagues are all healthy and safe. I have found a need to reach out and virtually touch someone on a regular basis. I hope you are all staying in touch with your friends and colleagues, and it need not be by Zoom. Make a point to reach out to someone, you both will feel better for doing so. 

    And, as far as staying connected goes, although many DRI seminars were and will be canceled, most substantive law committees are actively putting on webinars or hosting calls by Zoom or otherwise. This is a great time to get involved. If you are unsure if your favorite seminar is cancelled, the DRI home page  has a link to a list of all cancellations. If your favorite one is not on there, check back for updates. Notwithstanding the cancellations, DRI has been putting on webinars for members and non-members. For example, DRI recently hosted two webinars on how to reopen your office, which identified some of the issues you may need to confront as we begin to resume our more normal lives. Both were free, and if they are not already on the DRI website, they should be soon. In addition, a third webinar is coming the first week of June, hopefully. As soon as we know more, we will push it out to Lynette for distribution. These have been available for both members and non-members. I realize the notice sometimes has been a bit short, but to get content out timely, short notice will likely be the norm not only about COVID-19, but also for new webinars. The pandemic has shown that technology is easier to use than we thought, so we hope to get cutting-edge information to you while it is still cutting edge.

    In addition, the DRI home page has a coronavirus information link. It includes health information, stay at home orders, and some court information. It also has a direct link to DRI for Life. It should have tips on how to stay sane, or how to try to stay sane, while we juggle, dogs, cats, hamsters, goldfish, children, as well as clients. 

    Next, as many of you know, John Kouris, DRI's long-time executive director, recently stepped down. After a nationwide search, DRI has hired Dean Martinez as the new Chief Executive Officer. Dean started Monday, April 27. What a time to start, right? Dean is energetic and full of new ideas to increase the value of a DRI membership. I hope you get to meet him at the next DRI in-person event.

    DRI service projects continued during the pandemic with a virtual 5-K through DRI Cares. In this time of crisis, many food banks have been wiped out. What better time to have a food drive, fund-raising challenge, or other fund raiser for food banks or similar deserving organizations. 

    The NCADA Annual Meeting is around the corner.  Lynette would have my hide if I did not encourage you to attend, so ATTEND.

    Speaking of annual meetings, I would be remiss if I did not mention the Summit, formerly known as the DRI annual meeting. It remains scheduled for October 21-24 in Washington, DC, and we remain hopeful that we can pull this off. If it happens, we will have a regional dinner, cocktails and mocktails, and hope you can attend.

    Please be safe,

    Jon Berkelhammer

  • 24 Apr 2020 10:38 AM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    Message to Members:  43rd Annual Meeting Cancellation Notice

    From:  Lach Zemp, President, and Sara Lincoln Sara Lincoln, Executive Vice President

    With a heavy heart we are letting you know that the NCADA Officers and Board of Directors have made the decision to forego a gathering of our members in person for our Annual Meeting and Spring program due to the health and financial impacts of COVID19. While we are confident that the event would have been wildly successful and enjoyed by all, our primary focus is on the health, safety, and wellbeing of our members. As North Carolina and the entire United States struggles through this transition, we were faced with a lot of uncertainty that prevented us from confidently moving forward with this live and in-person program.

    Keeping in mind that our focus is on you, our members, we are planning a virtual Annual Meeting and Summer Program. In addition to valuable CLE and the opportunity to interact with your fellow NCADA members, we are planning to proceed with the judicial candidates forum, having the candidates speak to us virtually. We are working on a stellar plan to bring us all together virtually in June. The format we are working on will offer flexibility to attend great CLE while still being able to balance the other demands of life in this “new normal.” This programming will include a virtual Annual Meeting where the new slate of Officers and Directors will be voted upon. We hope that you will participate in this virtual programming and will provide registration details in the near future.

    If you did already register for our program here are some details on how the cancellation will be addressed:

    • If you have made a reservation at the Omni Hilton, that reservation will automatically be cancelled by the hotel as part of our event cancellation. However, you will want to confirm that cancellation in a few weeks if you do not receive a notice from the Omni Hilton.
    • If you have already completed and paid your registration to the NCADA, you have two options: 1) Apply your payment as a credit to future NCADA programming. Spouse or Guest fees, extra Saturday dinners, and Thursday Judicial dinner fees will automatically be refunded.  2) Receive a full refund.

    As social distancing restrictions ease and group gathering sizes are lifted we will be looking for ways to renew our personal relationships and connections with each other. We continue to move forward in planning our annual Fall Seminar on Friday, October 2nd, in Greensboro where we will be at the Sheraton Koury Center. We are hopeful that this program will move forward as currently structured.

    Our Annual Meeting and other programming offer exceptional opportunities for personal and professional relationship building and networking, professional development, and R&R time for you and your families. We hope you will continue to explore opportunities to network online with fellow members from across the state at upcoming virtual events. And we will see you in person – maybe 6 feet apart - in the near future.

  • 22 Apr 2020 12:20 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    On Friday, April 17th, NC Association of Defense Attorneys and NC Advocates for Justice hosted a joint webinar "All Hands on Deck" led by J.D. Keister and John McCabe.  This discussion featured Judge Paul Ridgeway, Kellie Myers and Ray Owens. 

    A sample Stipulation Governing the Conducting of Depositions was created and available for your use.  Please click the link above to download.  

    If you miss the webinar, watch here via the NCAJ's vimeo portal:  All Hands on Deck:  Working Together with Creativity and Civility During Uncertain Times.

  • 30 Mar 2020 6:00 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    To: Members of the North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys and the North Carolina Advocates for Justice

    From: F. Lachicotte Zemp Jr., president of the North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys and Vernon Sumwalt, president of the North Carolina Advocates for Justice

    As we seek to continue our work on behalf of our clients during these unprecedented and uncertain times, let’s remember that we have the opportunity and the duty to exemplify professionalism and embody civility even when, or perhaps especially when, facing extraordinary circumstances.

    Providing our clients with the representation they deserve in the days and weeks ahead will require us to adapt in a number of ways. We have already begun to employ technological solutions that will help to keep our cases moving forward.

    In light of recent orders from Chief Justice Beasley and Gov. Cooper, many of us are working cooperatively and professionally to accommodate some of the uncertainties around scheduling, deadlines, hearings, and trials. Working together will not only help to keep the justice system moving forward, but ultimately will benefit our clients in getting our cases managed and handled professionally and as expediently as current circumstances allow.

    Once we are beyond the present crisis, we will want to be able to look back with pride on how we treated one another. We will also want to be able to demonstrate to the courts that we each did our part to help support the judicial system and the integrity of the process.

    We hope your circle of family and friends remain healthy and well.



    F. Lachicotte Zemp Jr.
    NCADA President

    Vernon Sumwalt
    NCAJ President


    Print Letter

  • 23 Mar 2020 10:43 AM | Deleted user

    Thanks to Lawyers Mutual for these great updates. 

    Beware of Rats! Disruption During Pandemic Brings Out the Fraudsters!

    Practical Tips for Avoiding Malpractice During COVID-19 Pandemic


    DRI Information 

    Links for Up-to-Date Court Information

    Chief Justice Beasley's Emergency Order
    National Federal Court Update
    Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals Update
    US District Court Eastern District of NC
    US District Court Middle District of NC 
    US District Court of Western District of NC


    What the Filing Deadline Extension Means for Your Practice
    Chief Justice Cheri Beasley issued an updated emergency order that “all pleadings, motions, notices, and other documents and papers that were or are due to be filed in any county of this state on or after 16 March 2020 and before the close of business on 17 April 2020 in civil actions, criminal actions, estates, and special proceedings shall be deemed to be timely filed if they are filed before the close of business on 17 April 2020.” 
    How does the emergency order impact my practice?
    Thanks to 
    Warren Savage of Lawyers Mutual Insurance Company for this valuable information.  


    The Effect of COVID-19 on the Insurance Claims Market
    Part one

    At present, the world is currently experiencing unprecedented limitations on import; quarantine, both voluntary and mandatory; business shut down, both enforced and through an abundance of caution; and the cancellation of gatherings, events, and travel. The scope of these limitations is likely to affect almost every commercial enterprise, both directly and indirectly.
    read more....

    The Effect of COVID-19 on Time Element Claims
    Part two

    As part of the continued discussion regarding the effects of COVID-19 on the Insurance Claims Market, we introduce part two of our series, which examines how the pandemic can impact time element claims.
    Thanks to JS Held for this valuable information 


    The NC Bar Association has compiled an excellent list of resources to assist you and your firm during the pandemic.

  • 11 Feb 2020 4:35 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    Nominations Accepted for Board of Directors and Practice Group Leadership.

    The terms of five current members of the NCADA Board of Directors will expire in June 2020. Nominations for the five vacant Director positions are now being accepted to serve a three-year term beginning at the close of the 2020 Annual Meeting through the close of the 2023 Annual Meeting.

    Director responsibilities include:

    • Regular attendance and participation at quarterly meetings of the Board;
    • Membership recruitment and retention;
    • Contributing and participating in Association programs and services;
    • Other individual responsibilities as required.

    To qualify for a position on the NCADA Board of Directors, the nominee should

    • Be a member in good standing with the North Carolina State Bar and the North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys; and
    • Shown commitment and support of the NCADA through regular attendance at the NCADA's Annual Meeting, other programs and activities.

    Leadership opportunities in the NCADA’s Practice Groups are open for nominations. Members interested in the continued growth and relevance of the NCADA through its practice groups will be considered for leadership positions in the following areas of practice: Construction, Commercial, Employment, General Liability, Government, Medical Malpractice, Product Liability and Workers’ Compensation.

    The following information should be included in the nomination:

    1) Member Name, Firm, contact information and a brief biographical sketch;

    2) Brief statement by the nominee of his or her availability and commitment to actively serve as a member of the Board, or as a practice group leader;

    3) Brief statement why nominee would like to serve as a member of the Board of Directors, or as a practice group leader.

    Persons interested in submitting a nomination may E mail or write to the Nominating Committee in care of Lynette Pitt, Executive Director, by email ( or U.S. Mail: 4030 Wake Forest Road, Ste 203, Raleigh, NC 27609).

    Nominations must be received no later than Thursday, February 27, 2020, 5 p.m.

  • 17 Dec 2019 12:35 PM | Deleted user

    The North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys has been recognized as a leader in diversity and inclusion by North Carolina and South Carolina Lawyers Weekly. 

    NCADA and the Diversity Committee have striven to bolster diversity and inclusion within the defense bar through such programs as Whiteness in America, #MeToo in the Workplace, Implicit Bias & Race Relations, LBGTQ in the Workplace, and Leveraging Diversity in Litigation.

    Additionally, members Tricia Shields of Hedrick Gardner Kincheloe & Garofalo, LLP and Elizabeth Martineau of Martineau King Law, PLLC were honored for their individual commitment to diversity and inclusion. 

  • 20 Oct 2019 1:41 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    The North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys (NCADA) was presented the Rudolph A. Janata Award by DRI, the Voice of the Defense Bar on Friday, October 18, in recognition of its diversity programming that has covered socially trending topics including LGBTQ issues, the #MeToo movement, a discussion on whiteness in America, and uncovering bias in the practice of law to leveraging diversity in litigation.

    Dayatra T. Matthews and Lach Zemp accepted the award on behalf of the NCADA. This national award recognizes a state or local defense organization that has undertaken an innovative or unique program contributing to the goals and objectives of the organized civil defense trial bar.

    NCADA previously DRI's Janata Award in 2002 and is the only state defense group to date to be presented DRI’s Diversity Award in 2005 and 2012.

    The NCADA brings together civil trial attorneys to promote the exchange of information, ideas, and litigation techniques, and to strengthen the practice, improve the skills, and enhance the knowledge of lawyers defending individuals and businesses in North Carolina. For more information about the NCADA or the Judicial Candidates' Forum, please contact the Association office at 919-239-4463 or

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