Partner Michael Ortiz focuses primarily on the litigation of business, surety, construction, automotive and commercial real estate disputes. He also routinely manages litigation for clients with operations in several states. Michael is a certified mediator and arbitrator.

Recent Work

  • Successfully defended large coastal real estate developer against claims of fraud and unfair trade practices regarding lot sales, including successful third party claims against real estate agents
  • Advised multi-state property management company regarding mitigation of losses at 2 properties arising from insolvency of general contractor.  Included negotiation and preparation of settlement and lien waiver documents with 15 subcontractors or suppliers with claims exceeding $400,000
  • Successfully defended commercial real estate developer in an arbitration over the wrongful retention of deposits on a multi-million dollar project
  • Advised client regarding notice from NC-DENR regarding sewer spill
  • Successfully defended a power company (tenant) in an arbitration of wrongful termination of commercial lease for industrial property
  • Advised multistate property management and investment company regarding data and email retention program and policies
  • Successful result for national subdivision developer in a suit with a local builder over a $400,000 deposit under a $4 million lot purchase contract
  • Successfully represented attorney in professional malpractice litigation arising from a commercial real estate closing
The outcome of a particular matter cannot be based upon a lawyer’s or law firm’s past results.



Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church, Warrenton, NC





Syracuse University, B.S., summa cum laude, 1978 University of Illinois, J.D., 1985

Bar Affiliations

North Carolina Bar Association
Wake County Bar Association
Virginia Bar Association

Admitted to Practice

All North Carolina state courts
U.S. District Courts for the Eastern, Middle, and Western Districts of North Carolina
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
All Virginia state courts


“Underwriting Issues and Indemnity Agreements from a Litigator’s Perspective” Surety Conference, Oct. 2022
“Seeing the Future with 2020 Vision” Carlisle Residential Properties Annual Conference, Feb. 2020
“Elevate 2020” Bell Partners Inc. Leadership Conference, Feb. 2020
“Sailing the Seven” Bell Partners Inc. Leadership Conference, Feb. 2019
“Websites: ADA Compliance” National Multifamily Housing Council – OPTECH Conference, Nov. 2018
“Only the Brave Focus on Fair Housing” 2018 Bell Partners Inc. Leadership Conference, Jan. 2018
“It’s Hip to Be Square” 2017 Bell Partners Inc. Leadership Conference, Feb. 2017
“Tripartite Relationships” 2014 NCBA Construction Law Section Annual Meeting, Sept. 2014

Team Bios

Sean Doyle



Heather Connor



Melinda Hemphill