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Equitable Distribution & Marital Property Settlement


Barri Payne is a Board Certified Specialist in Family Law. She has vast experience helping clients to take a careful and planned approach to dividing their marital property and debts. Her experience as a certified family financial mediator has provided considerable extra benefit to her clients in considering how to split marital assets and debts.

In North Carolina, the legal term for property settlement in divorce is “equitable distribution.” The first step in an E.D action, as it is called, is to identify what are all the marital assets and marital debts? In general, these are assets and debts acquired during the marriage and not before, and not the result of a specific inheritance or gift to one party. Then there are the steps of valuation (i.e. what is the value of each asset?) and ultimately distribution of the assets, (i.e. who will receive each asset?). Marital assets can be so intertwined as to feel inseparable and breaking assets and debts down to bare numbers can leave families feeling financially vulnerable. Barri is skilled in assisting clients to find creative solutions to marital property division, reducing stress and allowing you to begin moving forward.

In N.C. couples are required to mediate the issue of E.D. to try and find the best solutions for their family and avoid lengthy and expensive litigation. Financial settlement in divorce can be a complex process, even in the friendliest of divorces. Because of the potential for negative repercussions of poorly considered distribution of debts and assets, family law attorneys properly investigate the full spectrum of a family’s finances. In addition to obvious things like your family home and credit card debt, other aspects important for consideration include investment accounts, retirement funds, military benefits, vehicles, bank accounts, business interests, and student loans. Once the entire picture is in place, options can be explored for fair distribution of marital estates.

Barri Payne can help you ensure that all of your marital property and marital debt is fairly considered so that your property settlement agreement is comprehensive, lasting, and dependable. Call her to schedule your consultation today.

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Durham Family Law Specialist, Divorce & Family Law Attorney


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Whether you are starting or ending a marriage, enlarging or legitimizing your family, or appealing a family court ruling, you have found the assistance you need. Barri Payne can help you negotiate and commemorate your family law matters in a way that ensures the preservation of your relationships.  Connect with us today.


What Our Clients Say

Avvo Review

“I am an attorney practicing since 1999. I chose Mrs. Payne to handle my separation and divorce proceedings and couldn’t be happier.” … “She was compassionate, empathetic, competent, and dependable. That is what I needed and she was right there. I highly recommend Ms. Payne for divorce proceedings.” CW

Martindale Peer Review

Barri has very good common sense and is pleasant to work with. She does a good job for her clients.

Avvo Review

Barri and I entered into a situation that seemed pretty clear cut. Inevitably, challenges arose. But Barri had already prepared and expected all of them. She completely keeps her cool and defuses situations that are emotional and usually pretty charged. Barri is the consummate professional. I highly recommend Barri and I will definitely continue to go back to her for anything that comes up. She’s so well-respected and genuinely cares about her clients’ best interest.


Martindale Peer Review

Barri is an experienced attorney who takes great care with her clients and their cases. She is a thoughtful and zealous advocate.

Google Review

Handled my divorce a decade ago and I’ve been referring people ever since. Brilliant, kind, reliable, trustworthy.

Jeremy Powers

Avvo Review

Barri helped me with a very difficult and lengthy case. I appreciated her ethics when things got sticky. She is extremely knowledgeable and always kept on top of the many details of the case. I can’t speak highly enough of her!


Avvo Review

“Barri was able to help me see the pros and cons of the situation and the possible paths to resolution.” … “She is the consummate professional, very knowledgeable, very responsive and communicative, and at the same time very compassionate and understanding. While my situation ended up in court, she is also very skilled at resolving things via mediation as well. If I could emphasize any further how grateful I am for Barri and how highly I would recommend her, I would rate 10 stars out of 5. Thank you.”


Avvo Review

Barri, Thank you for helping me through a very trying and difficult period. Your prompt and professional assistance was so very refreshing and very much appreciated. Elizabeth was also very helpful whenever I called or had any questions. Sincerely, KG

Posted by KG

Avvo Review

Barri Payne was an excellent choice as my lawyer because she was most effective and thorough in getting the job done. Her confidence and knowledge was successful in helping me get through some formidable hurdles. I am very satisfied that Barri Payne was expedient, knowledgeable, compassionate and trustworthy while engaging in helping me solve my legal problem. I will be forever grateful!

August 10, 2017

Martindale Peer Review

Barri is a great attorney and super nice person, she is down to earth and reasonable which is incredibly important in handling Family Law matters.

Martindale Peer Review

Outstanding lawyer and expert in all areas of family law.

Avvo Review

Barri and Elizabeth went above and beyond to make me feel at ease and help me through some very tough family circumstances. In the end, all parties involved were happy with the results. They are amazing! I highly recommend them!!!!!


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