Attorney Debra E. Stokes has been providing legal services in the Charleston area since she was admitted to practice law in South Carolina in 1980. Debra represents clients primarily in the areas of divorce and family law. However, as a result of her extensive trial experience and legal knowledge, she is able to represent clients in other civil and criminal matters.
Debra E. Stokes is rated AV Preeminent * in the areas of general and family law by Martindale-Hubbell, a high peer rating given to lawyers for legal ability and ethical standards. She is certified and approved as a Family Court Mediator by the South Carolina Bar’s Board of Arbitrator and Mediator Certification, having received her Certification in Divorce Mediation in 1992 through the Divorce Mediation Institute in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Debra E. Stokes graduated from the University of Maine School of Law in 1980.
She was formerly a partner in the law firm of Stokes & Thompson, which represented clients in civil, criminal and family law matters in all South Carolina state courts, and civil and criminal matters in the federal court. She served as Corporation Counsel to the town of Mount Pleasant from 1984 through 1987.
Debra is admitted to practice in the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina, the United States Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit in the state of South Carolina and the Supreme Court of the United States of America. She is a member of the Judicial Qualifications Committee and the Fee Dispute Committee for the South Carolina Bar Association.
* AV Preeminent is a certification mark of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell ratings fall into two categories—legal ability and general ethical standards. Debra has the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards.
Ashley has been a CPA for 24 years. She has been office accounts manager for Debra E. Stokes, LLC, for 14 years, handling the firm’s accounting and client billing. She also assists clients in complex cases in completing their Court mandated Financial Declarations. She has been married to David B. Neale for 24 years, and is the mother of three children, all of whom she is very proud.
Patti Sanders began her career in the law in 1984 as a legal assistant with a prominent insurance defense firm in Columbia, South Carolina. She continued working in that area of practice in Columbia until transferring to her firm’s Charleston office in 2005. In 2009, she moved to Florida to marry her husband, Matt, where she worked as a paralegal in a well-respected probate and estate planning practice in Fort Walton Beach. Longing to return “home” to her beloved state of South Carolina, she and her husband returned in the Fall of 2016. She was pleased to join Debra E. Stokes, LLC as a paralegal in March of 2017.
Patti feels especially privileged to have the opportunity to assist clients in difficult times such as the death of a loved one and now in divorce and child custody matters. She strives daily to give the best time and effort possible to our clients during this stressful time in their lives.