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About Amily McCool

I’ve always been driven by work that furthers social justice. For my entire career, both as a social worker and an attorney, I have worked to assist those who have the least. I am passionate about defending those charged with crimes, helping people expunge their criminal records, and assisting those affected by violence.  

I was motivated to attend law school after witnessing how the court system left both victims and defendants behind and failed to support families in becoming places of safety. After law school, I worked at the Wake County District Attorney’s Office for four years. As an assistant district attorney, I specialized in prosecuting domestic violence cases both in district and superior court. I conducted countless trials and built my skills in analyzing and presenting cases to judges and juries.

I left prosecution to continue to assist families by serving as a domestic violence attorney for Legal Aid of North Carolina in Durham, representing victims of domestic violence in civil matters who otherwise could not afford an attorney. I then worked at the state level for four and a half years as the Legal & Policy Director of the NC Coalition Against Domestic Violence. In that role I trained criminal justice stakeholders including law enforcement, prosecutors, magistrates, clerks, crisis agency advocates, and other allied professionals all across the state. I also worked to improve NC’s laws by collaborating with legislators to pass new legislation to assist in strengthening families.

I am an LGBTQ-affirming attorney and understand the additional complications that LGBTQ-identified folks face when interacting with the court system. In addition to expungement, criminal defense and restraining order representation, I am available to assist clients seeking name changes and/or gender identity marker changes and to help explain the process for them through trauma-informed representation. 

As an attorney at the Scharff Law Firm, and now managing partner, I use my education and knowledge to represent clients in a way that makes them simultaneously feel heard and expertly advocated for. The criminal justice system is often stacked against those who have been charged with crimes. I am committed to assisting people in order to help level the playing field and protect people from the long-term consequences of becoming criminal-justice involved. When I work with clients, I bring non-judgment and support as well as legal expertise and trial skills in order to help them through the current crisis. I am available to my clients to answer their questions and explain the process in detail. I understand that the entire process, and being accessible and transparent to my clients, is just as important as the ultimate outcome.