Stanley M. Sams

Retired Attorney
Ward and Smith, P.A.
Post Office Box 8088, Greenville, NC 27835-8088

After a distinguished legal career, Stanley retired from the firm's law practice in the spring of 2021.

Stanley had many years of experience in a broad range of real estate, business, and transactional matters, including business start-ups, financing, contracts, and transfers.  He regularly represents companies in the acquisition, governmental approval, and development of cellular and telecommunication tower facilities. 

Stanley represented clients in negotiating and closing purchases, sales, financing, leases of real estate, and commercial and residential development, as well as in planning for and creating conservation easements.  He had substantial experience in economic development projects throughout eastern North Carolina, representing development organizations, lenders, and industries. 

Stanley's practice areas also included negotiating construction contracts, advising clients on construction liens, related construction law matters, tax-deferred exchanges, real estate brokerage issues, subdivision, and the governmental approval process. 

He has served as a lecturer with the East Carolina University School of Business.


  • J.D., The University of North Carolina School of Law, 1979. Holderness Moot Court Bench, Magister of Phi Delta Phi.
  • B.S., Business Administration, East Carolina University, 1976

Representative Experience

  • Representation of a utility in financing and development of an approximately $140,000,000 project, which was the largest financing of its type in the country at the time
  • Representation of an equipment manufacturer in the property acquisition and financing in excess of $6,000,000 for construction of a new distribution facility
  • Representation of a bank in the acquisition of its new headquarters building
  • Representation of a property owner in connection with creation of a conservation easement for a historic plantation property
  • Representation of a medical practice in financing new construction and existing practice location in the amount of approximately $14,500,000
  • Representation of a purchaser in the acquisition of a portfolio of fast food restaurants, and subsequent financing in the amount of approximately $70,000,000

Professional and Community Affiliations

  • Carolinas Wireless Association
  • North Carolina Bar Association — Sections: Business Law; Estate Planning and Fiduciary Law; Real Property (former member, Real Property Council)

Admitted to Practice

  • North Carolina, 1979
  • All state courts in North Carolina
  • United States District Court for the Eastern and Middle Districts of North Carolina

About Me

What I admire most about my clients is their creativeness and dedication to the hard work involved in building their businesses.  The best thing about Ward and Smith is the team approach to meeting client needs.

I became a lawyer because I enjoyed helping people work through problems in a constructive way.  My motto is to provide the level of quality in performing legal services that I would want for myself.

One thing that people don't know about me is that I used to teach Judo.

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  • American Board of Trial Advocates
  • Legal Elite Business North Carolina 2021
  • Super Lawyers 2021
  • Recognized by Best Lawyers 2023
  • U.S. News Best Lawyers 2023

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