Jim Kelly practices law in the areas of business/commercial litigation, insurance litigation, products liability and personal injury. He has been lead counsel in more than 150 jury trials; more than 200 arbitrations, mediations, and other ADR; and more than 60 appearances in Federal and State Courts of Appeal.

Mr. Kelly was recognized in The Best Lawyers in America® for Commercial Litigation, Insurance Law, Antitrust Litigation, Mergers & Acquisitions Litigation, Securities Litigation, Trusts & Estates Litigation, and Personal Injury Litigation in 2018 and each of the 24 years immediately preceding. He was also named a 2012 "Lawyer of the Year" for the Greensboro region in the area of Insurance Law by The Best Lawyers in America®. Mr. Kelly is a lecturer in alternative dispute mediation, trial advocacy, and insurance and products liability laws. He has been named to Business North Carolina's "Legal Elite" list for more than seven years and in 2012 and 2013, he was selected to Business North Carolina's "Legal Elite Hall of Fame" in the area of Business Litigation. Mr. Kelly has also been recognized as a North Carolina “Super Lawyer” in Business Litigation and Insurance Coverage by Super Lawyers magazine every year since its inception, and named to the national Super Lawyers Corporate Counsel listing. He is AV® rated by Martindale-Hubbell.*

* CV, BV, and AV are registered certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedure's standards and policies.

Professional & Community Activities

American College of Trial Lawyers, Fellow

North Carolina Bar Association

North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys, Past President

Defense Research Institute, Past State Chairman

National Institute of Trial Advocacy

North Carolina Bar Association, Administration of Justice Task Force, Past Chairman

North Carolina Board of Legal Specialization, Past Chairman

U.S. Army, Capt., Ret.


  • Duke University School of Law, J.D. (1968)
  • Davidson College, B.A., Political Science and English

Bar Admissions

  • North Carolina (1968)


  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina
  • U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

Who We Are

1001 West Fourth Street
Winston-Salem, NC, 27101-2400
t +1 336.607.7351
f +1 336.734.2625

James H. Kelly Jr.

Experience Highlights

Covad Communications v. BellSouth Corporation (antitrust litigation in Atlanta federal district court)
Served as lead in-house counsel representing BellSouth in this significant antitrust case, which raised issues under essential facilities doctrine more
Claims involving break-up of CPA firm
Prosecuted claims relative to CPA and his company involving business break-up with former partners, including allegations of unfair trade practice, more
Real estate investment dispute for North Carolina developers
Successfully defended North Carolina developers of a large shopping center in efforts by a business partner, a commodities hedge fund, to recover its more
Products liability litigation for manufacturing company
The firm served as lead counsel in defending claims based on breach of warranty and negligence allegedly resulting in an explosion at a North more