Morningstar Law Group – Raleigh Law Firm – Durham NC Attorneys

Amie Carmack focuses on workforce law — that is, the body of laws, contracts and policies that regulate relationships between and among workers, owners and businesses; requirements for workers in regulated industries; behavior and safety in the workplace; worker mobility; and, protection of confidential information and trade secrets that workers access, use and create. This area of law practice is commonly known as employment law.

With more than 25 years of experience in workforce law and litigation, Amie engages closely with her business clients to help them achieve their organizational and professional goals, while mitigating the risk associated with workforce-related strategies and decisions. She helps business leaders assess risk, make decisions and position themselves to prove what they did, in compliance with complex local, state, national and international workforce regulations and case law.

Amie provides innovative ideas and drafting grounded in sound legal principles, brings a fresh perspective to strategy, efficient problem solving and dispute resolution, and vigorously defends her clients and protects their trade secrets and confidential information in litigation and government investigations. She is valued by clients for her practical, proactive and efficient approach.

Prior to joining Morningstar Law Group, Amie was a partner at K&L Gates and its North Carolina predecessor, Kennedy Covington. She is a passionate double Deacon with dual degrees from Wake Forest University and has been honored as the top employment lawyer in North Carolina.

Amie’s areas of expertise in workforce and employment law include:

  • Litigation and defense in state and federal courts; local, national and international arbitration venues; and, government agency forums
  • Compliance with local, state, federal, and international workforce regulations, including ADA, FMLA, Title VII, and more
  • Work-force-related agreements, policies and documentation
  • Protection of confidential information and trade secrets, competition covenants and related disputes
  • Officer and director fiduciary duties and other duties, internal investigations & Board of Director level communications, decisions and documentation
  • Partnership and corporate dissolutions involving disputes regarding ownership rights and interests
  • Compensation and non-qualified benefits, including wages, equity, stock award
  • Worker performance and conduct management
  • Cross-border workforces and international assignment of employees
  • Workforce issues and due diligence related to M&A and other business transactions

Amie is experienced in handling workforce matters in a wide variety of industries:

  • Healthcare systems and services (medical, dental and veterinary services)
  • Health and wellness products and services
  • Life Sciences, biotechnology, pharmacy, health products and services
  • Technology, product development, manufacturing, distribution and sales
  • Professional services, including legal, engineering, accounting, health systems, other service industries
  • Hospitality, restaurants
  • Financial services and securities
  • Education and educational products and services
  • Performing arts
  • Real estate development
  • Advertising and consumer sales

What's the best piece of advice you have ever received?
Treat every client, colleague, adversary and doorman you encounter as if you will be working alongside them every day for the rest of your career.

Accolades

  • Best Lawyers: Employment Law – Management (2013-2020), Labor Law – Union (2013-2020)
  • Business North Carolina Legal Elite: Hall of Fame Honoree, Top Employment Lawyer in North Carolina (2014) Permanently recognized as a North Carolina Legal Elite and no longer eligible for annual recognition
  • Business North Carolina Legal Elite: Employment Law (2007-2014), Young Guns (2007-2008)
  • Business Leader Magazine: Triangle Impact Human Resources and Staffing Leader (2008)
  • North Carolina Bar Association: Young Lawyer of the Year (2005)
  • North Carolina Lawyers Weekly: North Carolina Leader in the Law (2016)
  • Super Lawyers: Employment and Labor Law (2007-2008, 2010-2019)
  • Super Lawyers: Top 50 Women Lawyer (2007, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019), Top 100 Lawyer North Carolina (2019)
  • Triangle Business Association: 40 under 40 Leadership Award (2005)

Representative Experience

  • Assisted numerous clients in navigating the complex web of local, state, national and international regulations related to employee health, absences and disability accommodations and related performance and productivity issues
  • Assisted numerous, and exempt or non-exempt from FLSA minimum wage and overtime requirements
  • Drafted, reviewed and advised regarding thousands of workforce-related policies, procedures and documentation.
  • Drafted, reviewed, and negotiated thousands of workforce-related agreements, including employment agreements; non-competition, non-solicitation, and non-disclosure agreements; invention disclosure agreements; international assignment (ex-patriot) agreements; consultant and independent contractor agreements; management and administrative services agreements; and, secondment agreements.
  • Drafted, reviewed and negotiated thousands of separation agreements and severance packages for departing employees, consultants and independent contractors
  • Supported numerous business transactions with due diligence related to workforce-related documents, disclosures and issues.
  • Negotiated numerous PEO (Professional Employment Organization) contracts and relationships.
  • Conducted numerous internal investigations and advised Boards of Directors and Executives regarding related issues.
  • Coordinated services for inter-state and international workforce-related needs for a wide variety of clients.
  • Represented mortgage lenders in defense of multiple FLSA overtime claims by highly compensated mortgage loan originators, including class claims filed in federal court.
  • Assisted management with a wide variety of agency procedures, including Equal Employment Opportunity Commission investigations, Employment Security Commission unemployment determinations, Department of Labor inquiries, Occupational Safety and Health Act inspections, and others.
  • Represented local, regional, and nation-wide companies in both prosecution and defense of actions to enforce non-compete agreements, trade secrets and stock restriction agreements with departing employees, in a variety of venues, including state and federal courts in various states, and FINRA Dispute Resolution.
  • Represented companies in prosecution and defense of claims of corporate raiding of employees and misappropriation of confidential information and trade secrets in federal and state courts, and FINRA arbitration.
  • Defended hospital clients against multiple wage and hour, FMLA and breach of contract claims.
  • Defended national hotel chain in multiple discrimination lawsuits (race, disability, FMLA, retaliation claims) in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina.
  • Represented health care technology company in defense of employment discrimination, disability accommodation, noncompete enforcement, and other lawsuits filed in state and federal courts in various states, including North Carolina, Georgia, Delaware, California, Indiana, Minnesota, Ohio, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.
  • Defended international technology company in wrongful discharge lawsuit brought by former executive, resulting in settlement favorable to the client.
  • Defended fund manager in investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission, resulting in settlement favorable to client.
  • Represented FINRA member firm in United States Department of Justice investigation of broker for misconduct related to customer accounts.
  • Defended broker in investigation of misconduct by the North Carolina Department of Insurance.

Presentations & Publications

Amie is a frequent writer and presenter on employment law and workforce issues.

Frequently present on workforce topics for Capital Associated Industries, Inc. (2015-present)

  • “Workplace Laws for Managers and Supervisors.”
  • “Understanding and Preventing Workplace Harassment for Employees.”
  • “Understanding and Preventing Workplace Harassment for Managers and Supervisors.”
  • “FMLA: Purposes, Provisions and Regulations.”
  • “Advanced FMLA: Navigating FMLA and Other Leaves of Absence.”
  • “Background Checks:  Compliance with FCRA.”
  • “2016 Wage and Hour Update.” (2016)
  • “Employee Leave as a required ADA Reasonable Accommodation.” (2016)
  • “2016 Human Resource Challenges for In-House Counsel.” (2016)
  • “Respectful Workplace Training for Employees.” (2015)
  • “EEO Compliance in the Workplace.” (2015)
  • “When a Regulator Shows Up on Your Doorstep.” (2014)
  • “Risk Avoidance: Background Checks.” (2014)
  • “Employee Training: Sensitivity – Harassment.” (2014)
  • “Corporate and Employment Law Developments.” (2014)
  • “Social Media in the Workplace.” (2012, 2013)
  • “Employment Relationship Update: Noncompete Agreements, Protecting Trade Secrets, and the Challenges of a Cross-Border Workforce.” (2012)
  • “Lessons from Recent Employment Law Cases.” (2012)
  • “Labor Rights in Your Non-Union Workforce.” (2012)
  • “Trends and Changes to State Law that May Impact the Way You do Business.” (2011)
  • “Fundamentals of Employment Law for Corporate Counsel.” (2011)
  • “Managing Risk in Employment Decisions: Utilizing Temporary, Agency-Provided and Contract Workers.” (2010)
  • “Managing Risk in Employment Decisions: Strategies Related to Social Networking, Electronic Information Policies, and Data Theft.” (2010)
  • “Managing Risk in Employment Decisions: Wage and Hour Challenges and Opportunities.” (2009)
  • “Changes and Challenges for Employers: Business Decisions under the new FMLA and ADA Regulations.” (2009)

Publications

  • “Training and Development: North Carolina.” com (2012)
  • “Employee Discipline: North Carolina.” xperthr.com (2012)
  • “USERRA: North Carolina.” xperthr.com (2012)
  • “Other Leaves: North Carolina.” xperthr.com (2012)
  • “Involuntary Terminations: North Carolina.” xperthr.com (2012)
  • “Employment at Will Doctrine: North Carolina.” xperthr.com (2012)
  • “North Carolina Court Focuses on Clear Description of Customers for Enforcement of Non-Solicitation Clause.” (2010)
  • “Swine Flu or Other Pandemic Outbreak: Legal Issues for Employers.” (2009)

Education

  • Wake Forest University School of Law, J.D. (1995)
    Wake Forest Law Review, Editor in Chief
  • Wake Forest University, B.A., History (1991) cum laude

Admissions

  • North Carolina State Bar (2004)
  • S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina
  • S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina
  • S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina
  • S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • Supreme Court of the United States

Professional

  • American Employment Law Council (2014 – present)
  • NC Bar Association: Employment Law Section (1999–present), Strategic Planning and Emerging Trends Committee (2007-2014), Young Lawyers Division, Lawyer Effectiveness and Quality of Life Committee (Co-Chair, 2000-2004; Chair, 2004-2005)
  • First Presbyterian Church, Raleigh: Counsel to the Personnel Committee (2016–present), Personnel Committee member (2007-2016), Personnel Committee Chair (2014), Elder (2013–2016), Deacon (2007-2010), Adult Sunday School teacher (2002–2010), Confirmation Class Elder Leader and Confirmation Sponsor (2015–2016), All Church Retreat Planning Committee (2012–2016), FPC Serves volunteer (2000-2016)
  • The Trilogy School: Trilogy Association of Parents Board of Directors, Vice President (2014-present)
  • Leadership Council on Legal Diversity: Law School Mentoring volunteer (2012–2014, 2016–present)
  • Community Volunteer: Helping Horse, Interfaith Food Shuttle, Salvation Army
  • Capital Associated Industries: Learning & Development Educator (2015–2016)
  • Raleigh Youth Mission: Family host for youth intern (2015)
  • NC Independent Colleges and Universities: Ethics Bowl Judge (2014–2015)
  • Wake Forest University: Alumni in Admissions volunteer
  • NC Citizens for Business and Industry: Legal Issues and Workplace Policies Committee (2004–2005)
  • Leadership Raleigh: Class of 2005. Leadership Raleigh Alumni Association (2005–2016).
  • High Point University: Adjunct Professor (1997-99)
  • Davidson County Community College: Adjunct Instructor (1995-96)