Both Angenette (Angie) Stephenson and Deana Fleming were recently recognized as Board Certified Specialists in Child Welfare Law by the North Carolina State Bar. With both of their certifications, Stephenson & Fleming, LLP is now the only all Board Certified Child Welfare Specialist law firm in the State of North Carolina.
Combined, Angie and Dean have over 30 years of combined experience as attorneys in the child welfare field. Their commitment to the safety, permanency, and well-being of all North Carolina children and families continue to be their primary professional focus and is greatly enhanced by their recognition as Board Certified Specialists in Child Welfare law.
The North Carolina State Bar, an agency of the State of North Carolina, certifies lawyers as specialists in designated practice areas as a service to the public. The program assists members of the public in the selection of legal counsel by identifying lawyers who have demonstrated special knowledge, skill, and proficiency in certain areas of law. The program also gives lawyers a credible way of making their expertise known to the public and other lawyers.
To be certified as a board certified specialist in a practice area, a lawyer must
- Be an active member in good standing with the North Carolina State Bar for at least five years,
- Devote at least 25% of his or her practice to the specialty during the past five years (substantial involvement),
- Attend continuing legal education (CLE) seminars in the specialty,
- Be favorably evaluated by other lawyers and judges (peer review), and
- Pass a written examination in the specialty practice area – As one of the committee members who developed the Child Welfare Law Specialty, Angie did not sit for an exam, but rather worked with the nine other committee members to develop the exam that is being tested and used for additional certifications of Child Welfare Law Specialists. Deana was in the first group tested using a beta test.
Certification is granted for a period of five years. To maintain certification, a lawyer must again demonstrate that he or she is substantially involved in the practice area; attend CLE seminars in the practice area; and be favorably evaluated by peers.
For more information about the North Carolina Legal Specialization program, and to view a list of board certified specialists by practice area, please visit the Legal Specialization website at nclawspecialists.gov, or call the State Bar at 919.828.4620.