Family Law ▪ Criminal Defense ▪ Personal Injury Claims


Meet Our Charleston Lawyers

Attorneys in Charleston, SC with 30 years of combined experience in divorce, DUI & criminal defense, & personal injury claims.

Straight Talk. Practical Guidance. Real Solutions

Martindale Hubbell AV RatingIf you need an attorney in Charleston, SC for a divorce, a DUI or criminal charge or a personal injury claim, then you need the team of Futeral & Nelson, LLC. With so many lawyers in Charleston to choose from, we know that the key to success depends upon your satisfaction. We work for you, and that makes you our # 1 priority.

superlawyersWe’re not going to tell you what you want to hear. We’re going to tell you what you need to know. We’re tough litigators and accomplished negotiators. Meet with us and you’ll see why we’re the right lawyers in Charleston, SC for you.

Stephan Futeral

Stephan Futeral has deep ties to the local community. For over 40 years, he has lived and worked in the Lowcountry. He grew up in West Ashley, he went to high school and college in downtown Charleston, he worked on oyster boats on Shem Creek, and he’s lived in Mt. Pleasant for over 20 years. Chances are you may have run into him on the beach while he walks his pet therapy dogs with his wife Kelsey, or at a community event such as the Strawberry Festival at Boone Hall where he and his daughter enjoy the rides (and the strawberries) each season. As a lawyer, he helps people from all walks of life including construction workers, business owners, teachers, doctors, fire fighters and law enforcement, and other lawyers.

A Charleston Lawyer With Real-World Experience

Before becoming an attorney in Charleston, Stephan Futeral served our country in the United States Army from 1982 to 1985 and the United States Army National Guard from 1985 to 1987. He worked with strategic nuclear weapons and was a tactical satellite communications operator in the European Theater. He was also a member of the 440 Armor Unit, Fort Carson, Colorado. Further, he participated in such mass military exercises as Return of Forces to Germany and Desert Chief III.

In 1990, Stephan Futeral graduated from the College of Charleston with a degree in Business Administration. In 1993, he graduated from the University of South Carolina School of Law. After law school, he was the judicial clerk for the Honorable C. Tolbert Goolsby, Jr. at the South Carolina Court of Appeals.

Stephan Futeral has been an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Charleston School of Law. He has written articles for the South Carolina Lawyer magazine and the American Bar Association Magazine. Further, he published a legal annotation regarding the South Carolina Unfair Trade Practices Act in South Carolina Jurisprudence. He frequently lectures to non-lawyers and attorneys on such topics as personal injury, family law, and employment law. He is also a legal technologist and the creator of JuryPad, the leading jury selection iPad app for lawyers.

Stephan Futeral represents both businesses and individuals in the Lowcountry. Some of his business clients include: Anchor Commercial, Atlantic Bedding & Furniture, Bentley Marine Group, LLC, East Cooper Lock & Safe, Freedom Boat Club, Innovative Medical Solutions, Inc., Lowcountry Pool & Spa, Production Design Associates (PDA), Stasmayer, Inc., and many more. He is the “swiss army knife” of lawyers because he handles a broad range of legal matters such as divorce, DUI, criminal defense, personal injury, employment law, and business law.

“AV” Rated Charleston Lawyer

Martindale-Hubbell recognizes Stephan Futeral as an AV® rated attorney, the highest such rating available to any individual lawyer. The Martindale Hubbell® Directory has a 140-year history of providing unbiased peer review ratings and information to the public about the ethical standards and professional ability of attorneys. Martindale-Hubbell® PEER REVIEW RATINGS™ are an objective indicator of high ethical standards and professional ability, generated from evaluations of lawyers by other members of the bar and the judiciary in the United States. An AV® Rating shows that Stephan Futeral has reached the height of professional excellence.

AVVO recognizes Stephan Futeral as “Superb” (10 out of 10) in the fields of divorce, DUI defense, criminal defense, and personal injury based upon his experience, industry recognition, and professional conduct. On AVVO, He has answered hundreds of legal questions from persons all over South Carolina. You can see his answers HERE.

Avvo - Rate your Lawyer. Get Free Legal Advice.

I consulted with Mr. Futeral . . . He patiently listened to my concerns, and our discussion greatly clarified my thinking about the issues  . . . I felt that my consultation with Mr. Futeral equipped me to choose from several alternative resolutions that all would have served my best interests. I am very pleased with the advice and insight I received from Mr. Futeral, and without question I will turn to him again the next time I need legal advice.  ▪ William, a landlord-tenant client

M r. Futeral was very helpful in our matter especially when things got tense. He is cool, calm, and collected 110% of the time. I would highly recommend him for any litigation matter.  ▪ David, a business debt collection client

L ike many people, I never thought I would need to hire an attorney. But, last fall, I found myself in a legal predicament, and turned to Mr. Futeral for help. Not only was he compassionate and understanding as I relayed the events leading me to contact him, but I felt like he was asking all of the right questions in a non-accusatory or judgmental manner. Mr. Futeral handled my case professionally, providing routine updates, and explaining the process of the particular court my case was assigned to. Never once did I doubt his expertise or advice. His courtroom demeanor was equally, if not more impressive than our client interactions. Mr. Futeral was a strong advocate for my case, and it ultimately ended with a result I was satisfied with. I would highly recommend Mr. Futeral to anyone needing legal services.  ▪ Kimberly, a criminal defense client

S tephan has a great knowledge base and great ability to adapt from issue to issue. His ability to digest complex issues and allows him to provide a service that gives the client the trusted advisor he/she needs.  ▪ Richard, a business client

I ‘ve used Mr. Futeral’s services several times over the years. I have always been completely satisfied with his firm. Stephan really cares about his clients and it shows in his work ethic. I have recommended him to many of my friends and family members. All have been pleased.  ▪ Bobby, a general litigation client

S tephan has represented me on more than one occasion. I have referred many friends and fellow business owners to Stephan who were also very satisfied with his professionalism. I have no hesitation to continue to refer his services.  ▪ Rod, a business client

M r. Futeral has represented my interest in a case regarding city code violations. Mr. Futeral was very thorough with his knowledge of city law and impressed me with his research to exhaust all of my options. At all times, Mr. Futeral was professional and courteous with all parties involved and succinctly articulated his interpretation of the law and its application to my case. After discussions with our judge and opposing counsel, Mr. Futeral negotiated favorable terms. I would use his services again, and have recommend his services to friends and family.  ▪ Kyle, a criminal defense client

I ‘ve had the pleasure of knowing Mr. Futeral for over 30 years. While that is a bonus, the level of expertise that I have witnessed and had the pleasure of experiencing is of the highest level! Mr. Futeral stands by his clients with ethical, moral, and most of all, CARING expertise and practices. Have recommended Mr. Futeral to many folks all of which were impressed and happy with his knowledge of the Law and his handling of their case.  ▪ Cliff, a general litigation client

M y husband and I are very impressed with the professionalism and quality of service provided by Stephan Futeral and his staff. I would HIGHLY recommend this firm. I am a very pleased client!  ▪ Ashley, a family law client

Channel 5 Interview
Collecting Overdue Child Support


Channel 2 Interview
Alleged Landlord’s Bias Against Families With Children


Channel 2 Interview
Defective Home Construction

University of South Carolina School of Law
Juris Doctorate – 1993
Honors & Activities:

  • Moot Court Bar Order of the Barristers
  • Student Editor ABA Real Property, Probate and Trust Journal
  • Phi Delta Phi International Legal Fraternity

College of Charleston
Bachelor of Science Business Administration – 1990
Honors & Activities:

  • Outstanding Student Award
  • National Collegiate Business Merit Award
  • All-American Scholarship Award
  • Omicron Delta Kappa National Leadership Honor Society

  • South Carolina
  • U.S. District Court District of South Carolina
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 4th Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court

  • Adjunct Professor of Law – Charleston School of Law
  • Animal Law – An Emerging Legal Frontier – South Carolina Bar Assoc. 2014
  • iPad Apps for Practicing Law – South Carolina Bar Assoc. 2013
  • Technology to Win Cases & Streamline Your Practice – Charleston County Bar Assoc. 2013
  • Tech Savvy Law Practice and Ethics of Cloud Computing – Dorchester County Bar Assoc. 2013
  • Top Ten Things You Need to Know: Tort Law – South Carolina Bar, 2000
  • Magistrate’s School, 1997
  • Paralegal Certification – University of South Carolina, 1996 – 1998
  • The Internet for Attorneys – Half Moon, LLC, 1996
  • Personal Injury Practice for Paralegals -Clearwater Information Systems, Inc., 1995
  • Computer Technology: Making the Right Choices for Your Law Office – South Carolina Bar, 1994

  • American Bar Association
  • Head of Technology Committee, Charleston County Bar Association
  • South Carolina Bar Association
  • South Carolina Trial Lawyer’s Association
  • Association of the Trial Lawyers of America
  • Charleston County Bar Association
  • Certified Civil Court Mediator
  • Certified Family Court Mediator

Meet me here:
Charleston Lawyer Stephan Futeral

Stephan Futeral


Thomas Nelson

Thomas Nelson is a native of the Lowcountry. He was born and raised in West Ashley. Thomas is passionate about music and he is an avid guitarist, enjoying playing with friends, in weddings, at social events, and in local watering holes.  He also enjoys playing basketball in a league of attorneys in the Spring, recreational boating in the Summer, and following college and professional football during the Fall. He is also an accomplished Charleston attorney who practices in the areas of DUI, criminal defense, and personal injury.

Thomas has gained recognition as a top attorney across his fields of practice. He was recognized by Super Lawyers as a “Rising Star” as a General Litigation attorney in 2013 and 2014 and was granted membership to the National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Criminal Trial Lawyers.

Thomas Nelson graduated from Bishop England High School in 1995 and he received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the College of Charleston in 2000. He graduated from the University of South Carolina School of Law in 2003. During law school, he worked in the Office of the Attorney General assisting in public and press relations. He later worked in the Attorney General’s Elder Care Division where he organized a seminar educating over 200 attorneys, social workers, and law enforcement officials on elder abuse law in South Carolina. In his second year of law school, he co-founded an independent law clerk service that performed legal work for various lawyers and firms.

Thomas’ legal career has seen it all. He has practiced in federal courts, circuit courts, family courts, probate courts, bond courts, municipal courts, and magistrate’s courts. He has spent countless hours in the courtroom, trying cases and arguing motions at multiple levels. His cases have caused him to travel everywhere from the South Carolina Supreme Court to the Charleston County Detention Center. Thomas has represented plaintiffs, civil defendants, criminal defendants, creditors of debtors in bankruptcy court, injured people, servicemen, businessmen, college students, families, single parents, minors, the elderly, contractors, lawyers, doctors, ministers, real estate agents, buyers and sellers of real property, landlords, tenants, small businesses, bartenders, hair stylists, government employees, teachers, and families of the deceased. He has formed businesses, drafted contracts, filed liens, created wills, cleaned up criminal records, searched real estate titles, and judged moot court competitions for law students. He appears in court on at least a weekly basis. His most current project has involved authoring a book on deposition procedures in South Carolina and preparing for speaking engagements beginning in Spring 2014 regarding the issues raised in this book.

“AV” Rated Charleston Lawyer

Martindale-Hubbell recognizes Thomas Nelson as an AV® rated attorney, the highest such rating available to any individual lawyer. The Martindale Hubbell® Directory, first published in 1896, has a 140-year history of providing unbiased peer review ratings and information to the public about the ethical standards and professional ability of attorneys. Martindale-Hubbell® PEER REVIEW RATINGS™ are an objective indicator of high ethical standards and professional ability, generated from evaluations of lawyers by other members of the bar and the judiciary in the United States. An AV® Rating shows that he has reached the height of professional excellence.

Super Lawyers Rising Star

Thomas was named to the Super Lawyers Rising Stars list in 2013 and 2014.  The Super Lawyers Rising Stars are those attorneys who are under 40 years old or in practice less than 10 years. Rising Stars are nominated by their peers or identified by the Super Lawyers research department during the research process. The pool of candidates is then evaluated extensively by the Super Lawyers attorney-led research staff based on 12 indicators of peer recognition and professional achievement and rated by a panel of top candidates. No more than 2.5 percent of lawyers are named to the Rising Stars list.

National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Criminal Trial Lawyers

Thomas was granted membership to the National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Criminal Trial Lawyers, an invitation-only organization composed of the premier trial lawyers from each state in the nation who meet stringent qualifications as criminal defense trial lawyers. Selection is based on a thorough multi-phase process which includes peer nominations combined with third-party research. Membership is extended solely to the select few of the most qualified attorneys from each state who demonstrate superior qualifications of leadership, reputation, influence, stature and public profile.

University of South Carolina School of Law
Juris Doctorate – 2003

College of Charleston
Bachelor of Science Business Administration – 2000

  • South Carolina – 2004
  • United States District Court – South Carolina
  • Unites States Supreme Court

  • South Carolina Bar Association
  • South Carolina Association of Justice
  • Charleston County Bar Association

Meet me here:
Charleston Attorney Thomas Nelson

Thomas Nelson


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