Denise L. Bessellieu
Denise L. Bessellieu is a principal of Dickie, McCamey & Chilcote, P.C. She is licensed to practice in North Carolina and South Carolina. Ms. Bessellieu is also a member of the firm’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Throughout her extensive legal career, Ms. Bessellieu has represented both plaintiffs and defendants in all stages of civil litigation and administrative hearings. She concentrates her practice in the areas of administrative law, bad faith and coverage, commercial litigation, construction litigation, general civil defense, professional malpractice, real estate, and subrogation.
Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Bessellieu practiced as a litigation attorney in Charlotte. Additionally, she was an Assistant Judge Advocate General before retiring from the Air Force Reserve as a lieutenant colonel.
Subrogation – Product liability
- Investigation of cause and origin of property loss and damage, including allegation of product defect. Obtained recovery for client’s pre-trial. Handling these matters involved the determination of the cause and origin of the loss by retaining investigators and experts, including but not limited to fire cause and origin, electrical and/or mechanical engineers, and other experts, preparation of a detailed analysis report on the cause of the loss, evaluation of liability, and case valuation.
Tyger River – Policy Limits Demands and Time Limited Demands
- Provided coverage opinions for insurance companies in response to time limited demand letters seeking policy limits. Performed detailed analysis of factual background information, review and analysis of pleadings and insurance policies, and prepared detailed coverage opinion letters.
- Contracts and Business Torts: Defended a complex contract and business tort case involving rescission of a business purchase contract and allegation of negligent misrepresentation. Obtained pre-trial summary judgment and drafted the defendant/appellee response brief after the plaintiff appealed.
- International Sales Agreement – Convention on International Sale of Goods (CISG): Assisted in the litigation of a complex commercial contract dispute arising from international sale of goods involving issues of improper venue, statute of limitations and warranty claims. The case involved extensive discovery and motion practice in the Western District of North Carolina and successfully resolved at mediation.
Construction Litigation – Personal Injury
- Successful pre-trial resolution of lawsuits involving allegations of injury at an industrial plant in cases that involved extensive document discovery, numerous depositions of factual and 30(b)(6) witnesses, and motions practice. Instrumental in obtaining favorable pre-trial resolution for substantially less than the original demand.
Construction Litigation – Improper Waterproofing, Mold
- Obtained early dismissal for client in a case involving extensive water damage and alleged mold exposure in residential construction.
- Extensive experience defending personal injury and wrongful death claims arising from premise liability and/or automobile accidents.
- Lead defense counsel for administrative inquiries by the North Carolina Real Estate Commission regarding inquiries against realtors and real estate brokerage companies arising from alleged errors or omissions.
- Successfully represented a veterinary against inquiry from the North Carolina Veterinary Medical Board regarding allegations of improper treatment and determination to close the inquiry with no adverse action against the provider.
- Defense and pre-trial resolution of lawsuits against realtors in cases including allegations of failed real estate transactions and realtor misrepresentation. Cases involved extensive discovery and motion practice.
- Lead attorney on landlord-tenant actions enforcing eviction matters for hotels.
Admissions and Licenses
- North Carolina Bar Admission
- South Carolina Bar Admission
- United States District Court for the District of South Carolina
- United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina
- United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina
- United States District Court for the Western District of North Carolina
- Mecklenburg County Bar (former member of Linking Lawyers Committee and Pro Bono & Legal Recruitment Committee)
Education and Specialized Training
- University of South Carolina School of Law, J.D. (1999); Journal of Law and Education (Managing Editor); ABA Real Property, Probate and Trust Journal (Student Editorial Board); Merit Scholarship; recipient of John Holland Scholarship Award
- University of Northern Colorado, M.S. (1995), Statistics; recipient of Academic Award
- University of South Carolina, B.S. (1991), Mathematics; President’s List; Dean’s List; AF ROTC four-year scholarship
- NCDRC Certified Superior Court Mediator
- SC Bar Certified Circuit Court Mediator