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Frequently Asked Questions

Family Law

A consultation with a knowledgeable, experienced attorney here at the Turlington Law Firm will provide you with your options. Each situation is different, but during our consultations, we take time to really listen to each client’s individual situation. We give our clients sound legal advice, inform them of their rights, their obligations, and their options under North Carolina law. If you are the primary caretaker for a minor child who lives in the home with you, it may be possible to ask the court for a Writ of Possession of the residence in order to keep you in the household with the child.
Yes, we frequently assist clients in this situation. While your new spouse will be a stepparent to your biological children, your new spouses “rights” regarding your minor children are limited and are always subject to the rights of the custodial or biological parent. Frequently, both courts and Separation Agreements from prior relationships limit the ability of a new spouse or stepparent to discipline the minor children.
If there is an existing child support order, the Turlington Law Firm can file a motion to hold the payor in contempt of court for non-payment on your behalf. In any such motion for contempt, we ask the court to also order the payor to reimburse you for the attorney’s fees and expenses you have incurred as a result of the other’s non-payment.
Unfortunately, in many domestic situations involving minor children, one spouse will call the Department of Social Services or Child Protective Services in an effort to have the children taken away from the parent that has the children. Reports to DSS and CPS are anonymous, so they cannot tell you who called them. You should always be polite and cooperate with Child Protective Services, and call us immediately! You may have rights beyond what they have shared with you. There are things an attorney at the Turlington Law Firm can do to help you if you are in this situation.
Yes, we can help in this situation. If your child support has not been adjusted in 3 years, or there has been a substantial change in circumstances since the current child support order was entered, we can file a motion to modify your child support. If you support was calculated under the North Carolina Child Support Guidelines, we may also be able to ask that the court deviate from the amount of guideline support.
If you share joint custody with the other parent of the child, or children, and that joint custody was part of a court order, to modify the terms of that court order we would need to file a Motion to Modify Custody. Without the consent of both parties to the proposed modification, a motion to modify must show a substantial change in circumstances that directly affects the welfare of the minor child. What constitutes a substantial change in circumstances? The answer to this varies with almost every case. We are always glad to meet with you and discuss your options, as well as advise you if the circumstances of your case might be appropriate for a Motion to Modify Custody.
If you schedule a consultation with us, we can discuss in detail the exact behavior that you consider to be a bad influence. Many things such as drug abuse, alcohol abuse, allowing minor children to be around or in the presence of people who are using illegal drugs, or people who are drunk and abusive may be grounds to modify visitation and/or custody. Talking bad about one parent, or allowing others to say bad things about one parent to the minor children, or within their hearing, is frowned upon by many judges. Our courts like to see parents that provide their minor children with a consistent, stable and structured environment. One that keeps them safe, well taken care of and not involved in any dispute the parents might be having, like matters in court.

Construction Law

At the Turlington Law Firm, we have experience representing property owners, contractors, and sub-contractors in all phases of construction: from the negotiation and execution of the initial construction documents, to managing aspects of construction supervision and resolving any conflict that may result during the construction project. We have experience in a wide variety of construction matters from simple residential remodeling, to complex commercial construction. We have experience utilizing various legal formats to resolve construction disputes from arbitration with the American Arbitration Association, to mediation and of course, trials.
The Turlington Law Firm is proud to represent a variety of construction professionals from licensed, residential contractors, to unlimited commercial contractors, engineering companies, surveyors, electrical sub-contractors, plumbing sub-contractors and framing sub-contractors.
The Turlington Law Firm is proud to afford our clients the benefit of our experience in various areas of what is most commonly termed “green” construction. We work with U.S. Green Building Council LEED certified professionals to assist our clients with solar thermal designs, geothermal HVAC installations, photovoltaic energy systems, rain water catchment systems, wind and turbine energy systems, as well as net-zero or near-zero energy homes.
In the High Country of North Carolina, our construction practice focuses mainly on residential construction matters. We have assisted clients in all aspects of their residential construction projects from the initial permitting, to the final payment of draw requests and issuance of the Certificate of Occupancy by the office of the Building Inspector.

Traffic and Criminal Law

We help hundreds of clients in the High Country with their traffic citations and tickets. If you have a speeding ticket, in most instances we can handle the matter for you, without you having to appear in court. Depending on the speed, we may be able to have your matter reduced to a non-moving violation, which should keep you from receiving points on your insurance and driver’s license. In some instances where the speed is excessive, or other evidence comes into consideration, you may be able to attend a short traffic school class that will enable us to have your charge reduced.
Depending on how fast you were charged with traveling, you may have the option of paying the ticket without going to court. Please be aware that a speeding ticket is a moving violation and the North Carolina DMV will add points to your license for a moving violation. In addition, your insurance company may also add points to your record that may result in an increase in your insurance premiums. If your ticket is in excess of 15 mph over the limit, DMV may also revoke your driving privilege. Before you just pay off any ticket you receive, call us for a free consultation and we will be happy to advise you of your options.
In any DWI case, an attorney should represent you. We offer free consultations in DWI cases. During that consultation, we review in detail the events that led up to your charge to ensure that the officer(s) that arrested you followed procedures properly and that your rights were not violated. We review your initial stop, field test performance, breathalyzer testing and the conditions of your pre-trial release. In any DWI case, your prior record is of utmost importance. If you have been convicted of a prior DWI within the last 7 years, your punishment level will be increased if you are convicted again. Please call an attorney before you go to court on any DWI.
We encounter this situation frequently. The phone rings, it’s an officer who asks you to come down to the police station and says that they just want to ask you a few questions about a situation they are looking into. If this happens to you, before you go speak to anyone, call us immediately! At no charge, we will be happy to discuss with you the situation and why you think law enforcement is calling you. In any such situation, you have the right to have an attorney present. Very often we meet with officers here in our office when they want to speak with our clients. Do you have to talk to them? No You do not. That does not mean the situation will just go away. This situation also occurs frequently with what officers call a “Knock and Talk.” They knock at your door and say they just want to speak with you. You do not have to open the door. They cannot come in without a search warrant. If any of these situations occur to you, call us immediately!
In speeding and traffic matters, as well as DWI and most criminal matters, we charge a flat fee. That fee depends on what you are charged with and varies from case to case. If you have a speeding ticket that is less than 15 mph over the limit, in most circumstances our fee is only $139.00, plus the court costs. Fees vary for other traffic offenses, DWI cases and criminal cases. Our free consultation is a no obligation consultation. We will discuss your matter with you at no charge, and allow you to make the decision as to what you would like to do.

Call for a Free Case Review – 828.263.8860