Christian H. Staples

Partner, Retail and Consumer Business Sector Chair

A proven litigator with first-chair jury trial experience, Christian maintains a diverse legal practice representing businesses and individuals across a broad spectrum of industries in litigation and dispute resolution, commercial leasing, and other business legal matters. 

He is licensed to practice law in all state and federal courts in North Carolina and South Carolina, and also litigates cases in the North Carolina Business Court, before various administrative tribunals, and in the appellate courts.

Christian is also a Certified Mediator by the N.C. Dispute Resolution Committee and is available to mediate a variety of civil disputes, whether pre-suit or in active litigation.

He serves as Chair of Shumaker’s Retail and Consumer Business Sector and primarily handles cases involving the following:

  • Breach of Contract
  • Commercial Leasing and Evictions
  • Negligence and Intentional Torts
  • Alcoholic beverages and alcohol regulation (ABC/ALE, TTB, etc.)
  • Products Liability/Breach of Warranty
  • Construction Defect
  • Unfair Trade Practices
  • Labor and Employment
  • Intellectual Property
  • Contract Drafting and Negotiation
  • LLC Formation and Operating Agreements

Working with clients in the food, beverage, and hospitality industry is particularly enjoyable to Christian. He represents several local craft breweries, distilleries, and retail alcohol permittees, and is well-versed in alcoholic beverage law. Christian serves as an Advisory Board Member and Lead Instructor for the UNC Charlotte Craft Beer Business Essentials Certificate program (Legal Bootcamp Class), and has taught continuing legal education seminars on the laws and regulations affecting alcoholic beverage manufacturers, distributors, and retailers.  

Christian was named a “Leader in the Law” by North Carolina Lawyer’s Weekly Magazine in 2017, and has received "Rising Star" and "Young Gun" designations from North Carolina Super Lawyers Magazine and Business North Carolina Magazine, respectively. 

Outside of his practice, he volunteers his time with The First Tee of Greater Charlotte, Habitat for Humanity, and other local organizations. Christian currently serves as Social Chair for the Charlotte Alumni Chapter of Woodberry Forest School. He previously served on the Board of Directors for the Mecklenburg County Bar (MCB), and as chair of the MCB Young Lawyers Division.

Media Appearances

  • Represents appliance manufacturer and window/door manufacturer in product liability actions and other litigation matters.
  • Represents commercial property owners/management in landlord-tenant disputes, summary ejectment proceedings, and actions to recover money damages.
  • Represents local Latin/Mexican restaurant chain in commercial leasing matters.
  • Represents multiple local craft breweries in general corporate matters, leasing and real estate transactions, licensing/permitting, zoning, distribution agreements, trademarks and intellectual property, and other related matters.
  • Represents owners, developers, general contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, and sureties in all stages of construction litigation.
  • Represents automobile leasing companies in claim and delivery actions and other litigation matters.
  • Represents individual and business clients in actions to enforce and collect monetary judgments.
  • Represented owner of landfill and recycling business in civil enforcement and administrative actions involving a state health and environmental agency.
  • Represented internationally known motorcycle journalist and TV personality in lawsuit against producer and production company involving claims for breach of contract, trademark infringement, defamation, and unfair and deceptive trade practices.
  • Represented flooring product importer/wholesaler in complex litigation involving claims for breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, trademark infringement, unfair & deceptive trade practices, etc.
  • Represented environmental emergency response company in arbitration proceedings arising out of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, resulting in a multi-million dollar award.
  • Represented individual plaintiff in action to recover one-half of lottery proceeds derived from multi-million dollar lottery annuity prize.

Reported Appellate Decisions

  • Tate v. Calloway, et al., 735 S.E.2d 633 (N.C. App. 2012).  Obtained summary judgment at the trial court level on behalf of two physicians facing claims of tortious interference with contract and negligent infliction of emotional distress.  Summary judgment was affirmed by the North Carolina Court of Appeals.
  • Khomyak v. Meek, et al., 214 N.C. App. 54, 715 S.E.2d 218 (2011).  Obtained reversal of a trial court order awarding only $1,000 in litigation costs following a successful defense verdict at trial.  On remand, the trial court awarded our clients over $15,000 in litigation costs.
  • Stinchcomb v. Presbyterian Med. Care Corp., et al., 211 N.C. App. 556, 710 S.E.2d 320 (2011).  Obtained affirmance of a trial court order dismissing plaintiff’s complaint against hospital client based on the improper issuance of summons and expiration of the statute of limitations.
  • Jarrell v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Hosp. Auth., et al., 206 N.C. App. 559, 698 S.E.2d 190 (2010).  Obtained affirmance of a trial court order awarding expert witness fees following a successful defense verdict at trial.