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Effective advocacy requires learning the facts and understanding my client’s goals. In the increasingly noisy and fast-paced world in which we live, I find it critically important to take the time to listen to my clients without getting distracted or jumping to conclusions. More often than not, it is the little details of my client’s story that make the difference—details that can be easily missed without the necessary focus and patience to learn the context in which a particular case arises.

Kirby Shealy has tried dozens of cases before juries and judges in state and federal courts throughout South Carolina. He also has extensive appellate experience. Kirby aims to bring a practical approach to each matter in hopes of avoiding a trial and/or a lengthy appeal if a favorable resolution can be achieved earlier in the litigation process.

Kirby’s practice encompasses commercial litigation, construction, title defect, professional negligence, insurance coverage, and products liability matters. He also defends catastrophic injury, mass tort, and toxic tort claims against trucking, manufacturing, and other commercial enterprises at both the trial and appellate level. 

He has defended cases involving breach of fiduciary duty, unfair trade practices, ultra vires acts, and fraud allegations brought against directors and officers of corporate entities. In addition, Kirby advises charter schools and other non-profit entities on a variety of governance issues and regularly defends corporate directors and officers from breach of fiduciary duty claims.

I do think there are far too few lawyers who are really good listeners. We really need to be listening before we offer advice or take any action on our client's behalf.


  • University of South Carolina School of Law, J.D., 1996
  • Davidson College, B.A., 1993

Bar Admissions

  • South Carolina

Court Admissions

  • South Carolina
  • United States District Court, District of South Carolina
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

Community Involvement

Kirby is committed to public service and has given back to his community in a variety of ways for more than two decades. Over his career, he has served on the boards of the Richland County Public Library, Friends of the Richland County Public Library, York Place, Thompson Child and Family Focus, Growing Home Southeast and the Indian Waters Council, BSA. He has also served on the vestry and as a warden of Trinity Cathedral. Kirby presently serves as secretary of the Heathwood Hall Episcopal School Board of Trustees and chairs its Audit and Risk Committee. He is also Chancellor of the Episcopal Diocese of Upper South Carolina and the Scoutmaster for Troop 8 and Capital Rivers District Committee Chair for the Indian Waters Council, BSA.


  • Litigation Counsel of America, Fellow 2024
  • AV® Peer Review Rated - Martindale-Hubbell
  • Benchmark Litigation - Future Star, 2023, 2024
  • Legal Elite of the Midlands - Business Litigation, Columbia Business Monthly, 2016-2017, 2023
  • Riley Institute Diversity Leaders Initiative, Fellow, 2023
  • LawDragon 500 Leading Litigators in America, 2023, 2024
  • Best Lawyers® - Personal Injury Litigation 
  • Cuthbert Cross Award, Episcopal Diocese of the Upper South Carolina, 2021
  • Scoutmaster of the Year, Indian Waters Council, BSA, 2020
  • Leadership in Law Award, South Carolina Lawyers Weekly, 2018
  • South Carolina Bar Mentor of the Year, 2017
  • Richland County Bar Association Civic Star Award, 2017
  • Anne Thornhill Weston Award, Heathwood Hall Episcopal School, 2016
  • Gold Compleat Lawyer Award, University of South Carolina School of Law Alumni Council, 2015
  • Henry B. Richardson Award, York Place Board of Trustees, 2013

Professional Affiliations & Memberships

Kirby is an active leader in several professional organizations, including the South Carolina chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), of which he is a past president. He currently serves on ABOTA’s national board. He is also a past-president of the John Belton O’Neall American Inn of Court, an organization of lawyers and judges that promotes the highest standards of civility, professionalism, and competency in the legal profession.

Kirby presently serves as the Chair of the South Carolina Supreme Court’s Committee on Character and Fitness, which is charged with determining the suitability of applicants to the South Carolina Bar.

  • South Carolina Bar
  • Richland County Bar Association
  • Defense Research Institute
  • John Belton O'Neall American Inn of Court
  • Leadership Columbia, 2007
  • American Board of Trial Advocates