Hegedus, Hawkins & Stancil, PLLC offers legal knowledge and experience spanning 37 years to provide quality legal services to the greater Gaston and Charlotte regions. Focusing on elder law, real estate, and estate planning, Hegedus, Hawkins & Stancil, PLLC is recognized as a trusted legal firm serving the area.

Stephen Hegedus, Hailey Hawkins and James Stancil have come together, with a mission to provide forward-thinking and client oriented legal services. We are committed to serving all populations, including the LGBT community and the unique legal issues LGBT individuals, couples, and their families deal with throughout their lives.

Stephen Hegedus

Stephen T. Hegedus


Stephen was born in Charlotte and raised in Mount Holly. After being admitted to the North Carolina State Bar in April 2014, Stephen saw the need for affordable legal services in his community and opened his own law office in Mount Holly.

Stephen attended Appalachian State University where he was an active member in the Appalachian State Marching Band and earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science with a Minor in German in 2009.

He earned his Juris Doctor from Elon University School of Law in 2013, where he was a founding member of the Elon Law Pro Bono Board, interned with Legal Aid of North Carolina, and externed with the Alamance County District Attorney’s Office.

Stephen is licensed to practice law in North Carolina, and is a member of both the Gaston County Bar and North Carolina State Bar Association.

When Stephen is not in the office or in court, he is spending time with his husband, playing the saxophone with the Charlotte Pride Band, helping with Mount Holly Rotary Club, staying active at the YMCA, and Hiking the trails at Crowder’s Mountain.

Areas of Expertise: Real Estate and Business Formation

Hailey Hawkins

Hailey E. Hawkins


Originally from Pennsylvania, Hailey Hawkins moved to Charlotte after college to teach high school math through Teach for America. While teaching in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg school system, Hailey met her husband and fell in love with the city. She ultimately decided to attend law school in North Carolina.

Hailey has a strong work ethic and a desire to help others. With her background as a teacher she has developed the ability to communicate clearly and effectively. Her goal is to provide the customer service and quality legal advice that clients deserve.

Hailey graduated summa cum laude in the top 5% of her law school class. During law school, she was a member of the Moot Court Honor Board and Law Review, and had the opportunity to intern with the Honorable Graham C. Mullen in Federal Court in the Western District of North Carolina.

Hailey is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and the Federal Court in the Western District of North Carolina. She is a member of the Gaston County Bar and the North Carolina State Bar Association.

In her free time, Hailey enjoys spending time with her husband and young daughters. She also enjoys baking and spending time outdoors with friends.

Areas of Expertise: Estate Planning, Elder Law and Estate Administration

James Stancil

James W. Stancil

Attorney, Of Counsel

James W. Stancil attended Wake Forest University where he graduated with a B.A. in 1974 and a Juris Doctor in 1978. He has maintained a law office in Mt. Holly continually since then. His practice has covered many areas of law with a focus on estate and real estate law during the last several years.

He has received the AV rating by the Martindale-Hubble law rating service recognizing the highest excellence in experience and integrity. He has developed a close working relationship with lenders and real estate professionals in the area, and will continue in the daily operations of Hegedus, Hawkins & Stancil, PLLC by providing assistance, advice and counsel.

He has served on several boards in the local community and enjoys outdoor activities in his spare time.

Joy McMurry Chappell

Joy McMurry Chappell


Joy grew up in Lincolnton, North Carolina and moved to Gaston County in 2001, where she currently resides. She began her legal career as a paralegal for 13 years before becoming a lawyer in 2009. Her 23 years of experience in the legal field has served her well in that she has a compassionate client-centered approach to helping individuals and families obtain the best possible outcomes with their family law issues.

Joy graduated with her Master’s in Business Administration degree in 2003 and obtained her Juris Doctor degree in 2009. During law school, Joy had interned with the Gaston County Public Defenders’ office and for the Honorable Carl Horn, III in the Federal Court in the Western District of North Carolina.
Joy is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and the Federal Court in the Western District of North Carolina. She is a member of the Gaston County Bar, the North Carolina State Bar, and the Family Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association.

Joy is a volunteer attorney with the Gaston County Domestic Violence Legal Clinic through the Gaston County Sheriff’s Department and has also handled numerous pro bono cases with Legal Aid of Gastonia in family law related matters.

In her free time, Joy loves spending time with her son, hiking, traveling and attending fitness classes.

Areas of Expertise: Family Law

Nancy Marze

Nancy Marze

Legal Assistant

Nancy was born in Charlotte, NC, and raised in Catawba Heights. She graduated from South Point High School in 1973 and earned her legal secretary associate of arts degree in 1975 from Gaston College. Her career as a legal secretary began in 1975, and her employment began with Rankin & Stancil in February of 1980.

She has worked with Mr. Stancil since that time and has centered most of her attention upon real estate closings for the past 35 years. During that period of time, a close working relationship has been developed with many of the lenders, realtors, title insurance companies and clients.

During her time away from work, she enjoys spending family time with her three children and nine grandchildren . Music is also a very important part of her life, and she has served as the pianist, organist and keyboard player of her church for 48 years. When she can grab a minute from everything else, she loves to pull out her shagging shoes and dance the night away!

Sara Parker

Sara Parker

Family Law Paralegal

Sara was born and raised in Gastonia, North Carolina with her parents and younger brother. She graduated from Forestview High School in 2009 and earned her Associate’s in Applied Science in 2017 from Gaston College. Sara has worked solely in family law since 2016.

Her top priority is to help the attorney in making sure the client’s experience is a positive one. She is passionate about helping clients during stressful situations.

In her free time, Sara enjoys spending time with her husband and dogs, shopping, going to the rodeo, watching Disney movies, and reading.

Jennifer Harsch

Jennifer Harsch

Estates Paralegal

Jennifer grew up in Western New York and relocated to North Carolina in 2014 to where she currently resides. She graduated from Belfast Central School and currently attends South Piedmont Community College for her Associate of Applied Science Degree in Paralegal Technology.

While at South Piedmont Community College, she has been inducted into The National Society of Leadership and Success, Sigma Alpha Pi and participates in the Mindfulness Meditation group on campus.

During her free time, Jennifer enjoys reading, politics, and photography, with her favorite subject matter being her two young daughters.