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Roy Cooper vetoes bill protecting NC hog farmers
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed a bill on Monday that severely limited how and when neighbors of hog farms can sue the agricultural business next door with nuisance claims. The action came 11 days after approval of the North Carolina Farm Act, or Senate Bill 711, which sparked heated debate in the General Assembly. It also came on a day when opponents of the bill and farmers both rallied in Raleigh. The chief sponsor of the bill said he would ask fellow lawmakers to quickly override Cooper’s veto and pass the changes into law.
Lawmakers pushing for the curbs on nuisance suits were upset by a jury’s decision in federal court in April to award $50 million to 10 neighbors of a hog farm operated by Murphy-Brown and Smithfield Foods. North Carolina law already limits how much hog farm neighbors can get in damages if victorious at trial. Sen. Brent Jackson, a Sampson County Republican and farmer, and other bill sponsors argued that future verdicts such as the one in the case brought by neighbors of the Duplin County hog farm could wreak havoc on the pork industry in a state that has 9 million hogs on nearly 2,300 hog farm operations. Advocates for pork producers describe them as small family farms that will be run out of business if nuisance lawsuits become a trend.
Hilton Monroe of Rose Hill was among the farmers who gathered near the Legislative Building on Monday. Rep. Billy Richardson, a Fayetteville Democrat and attorney, and Rep. John Blust, a Guilford County Republican and attorney, gave impassioned speeches, urging their fellow lawmakers not to put any more limits on the hog farm neighbors. Unless a farm operator has a criminal conviction or has received a regulatory notice of violation that state farm laws were broken, such damages won’t be allowed.
The farmers were not the target of the nuisance suits.
Parker Herring Law Group, PLLC
If you’re currently the guardian of a child, there are some legal protections that you don’t have that a family adoption will ensure for you. The relative adoption process in North Carolina is much easier to complete than a traditional infant adoption – but you’ll still need an adoption lawyer to walk you through the process. We can help you collect the legal documents you need for a relative adoption in N.C., determine whether you need to complete any home studies or background screenings and finalize your adoption of a family member. Yes – a relative adoption is considered as any adoption where a minor child is placed with their grandparent, sibling, first cousin, aunt, uncle, great-aunt, great-uncle or great-grandparent. Change the child’s name in the adoption process.
In addition to the legal benefits of adopting a relative, the permanency of adoption can provide emotional benefits to the child you’re adopting. Because you are related to the child you want to adopt, the laws regarding your adoption are much less strict than they are for unrelated adoptive parents. In most cases, the only people who have to consent to the adoption will be the child’s legal parents – usually their biological mother and father. If the child is 12 or older, they will also have to give their consent for the adoption. In many North Carolina relative adoption cases, the adopting relatives already have custody or guardianship of the child, so the consent of the parents may not be necessary or will have already been given.
After the original adoption petition is filed, the adoption decree will usually be issued within six months. If you work with us, we will answer your questions about the law and adoption process, help you assess risks involved, clarify your options and develop a legally secure plan for your adoption.
Family Law Lawyer, Estate Planning
Paralegal Robert Newton grew up in Eastern North Carolina and spent several years working and living in the Midwest prior to returning to North Carolina in 2014. Bobby worked in the hospitality industry prior to working for the Law Office of Alice K. Womack. Most recently, Bobby worked for several years at a Hilton-brand select service hotel, focusing on guest satisfaction and experience. Bobby hopes to bridge his hospitality and legal career by brining his extensive experience in customer satisfaction to the legal profession.
While in law school, Alice served as a Staff Editor for the North Carolina Central Law Review and had her article published on the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals’ First Amendment decision in U.S. v. Hamilton. Prior to law school, Alice attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Communication Studies. Prior to returning to law school, Alice worked in the hospitality industry as the General Manager for several select service brand hotels in Raleigh, NC and Indianapolis, IN and a full service hotel in Sioux City, Iowa.
Alice currently lives in the Triangle with her husband, daughter, three dogs and one cat. Attorney Alice K. Womack is here to listen to your needs and help you accomplish your legal goals in any way she can. From premarital agreements to adoptions, Alice can handle any of your family law needs. Alice understands that sometimes you need an attorney for both joyful occasions such as marriage and adoption, but also for emotionally difficult situations like the dissolution of a relationship.
Alice will give you the personal service you need in order to take care of your most personal family law needs.