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About me

Fred Morelock is a former Wake County District Court Judge who presided primarily in family court for fourteen years.  He received his bachelor's degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1974 and his law degree from UNC in 1976.  He then practiced as a trial attorney for ten years in the areas of criminal defense and family law litigation before being appointed to the bench.  He joined Tharrington Smith in 2001.


In 1986, Mr.  Morelock was appointed by Governor James G. Martin to a Wake County district court judgeship.  He was reelected three times and served for fourteen years.  In 1990, Mr. Morelock became the first judge in Wake County to become a Certified Juvenile Law Specialist.  During the last several years on the bench, he presided almost exclusively in domestic court, most recently in North Carolina's first designated specialized judgeship in the area of family law.


As a district court judge, Mr. Morelock was a frequent speaker and instructor for continuing legal education seminars for attorneys (North Carolina Academy of Trial Lawyers and Bar Association) and for judges (North Carolina Association of District Court Judges and the Institute of Government New Judges School) on various family law issues.  He has also been a seminar speaker for the North Carolina Association of Certified Public Accountants  and the Wake County public school principals.  Mr. Morelock has served on the Board of Directors of the Wake County Bar Association and its Professionalism Committee, the Raleigh Rescue Mission, and Carolina Legal Assistance.


Mr. Morelock's practice includes the representation of clients in all areas of family law, as well as mediation and arbitration. He is admitted to practice in all state courts and the federal district courts for the Eastern and Middle Districts of North Carolina.  Mr. Morelock is a member of the North Carolina Bar Association and its family law section.  He is former chair of the Grievance Committee for the 10th Judicial District and most recently was appointed by the State Bar Council to the Disciplinary Hearing Commission. He is a Certified Superior Court Mediator and a Certified Family Financial Mediator.


Mr. Morelock is married to Jeannie S. Morelock, and they have two teenage sons.


Tharrington Smith LLP is a North Carolina law firm regulated by the Rules of Professional Conduct, as promulgated by the North Carolina State Bar. As such, our lawyers do not and cannot ethically participate in many of Avvo's programs, including its Legal Topics, Legal Forms, or its fixed-price legal services. Tharrington Smith advises extreme caution when relying on Q&A's or use of legal forms without the guidance of a qualified lawyer.


Practice areas


  1. Mediation: 70%
  2. Divorce: 20%
  3. Arbitration: 10%

Attorney endorsements

5 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • Charles N. Griffin III

    Fred has helped several of my clients through difficult domestic matters. He is an excellent lawyer and my clients were glad they went to him.


    Charles Griffin Estate planning Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

  • Robert Samuel Gilligan

    I endorse this lawyer.


    Robert Gilligan Criminal defense Attorney
    Relationship: Other

Contact info

Tharrington Smith

150 Fayetteville Street, Suite 1800
P.O. Box 1151
Raleigh, NC, 27602-1151


We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Super LawyerNorth Carolina Super Lawyers2015
Super LawyerNorth Carolina Super Lawyers2014
Appreciation Award10th judicial district bar2010
Presidents Award of ExcellenceWake County Bar Association2009
Legal EliteBusiness North Carolina2009
Best LawyerBest Lawyers in America, Family Law Section2006
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
PartnerTharrington Smith2001 - Present
Independent CounselNC Medical Board2010 - 2013
District Court JudgeNorth Carolina District Court, 10th Judicial District1986 - 2000
Association namePosition nameDuration
Disciplinary Hearing CommissionVice Chair2014 - Present
Wake County Bar AssociationFormer Board of Directors2005 - 2006
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
University of North Carolina, Chapel HillLawJD - Juris Doctor1976
University of North Carolina, Chapel HillArts and LawBA - Bachelor of Arts1974
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Family Law Intensive SeminarRecapture of Alimony2008
Perils and Pitfalls in ADRArbitration and Post Hearing Matters2005