Moore & Van Allen Law Firm, Attorneys
Practice Areas
  • B.A., University of Virginia, 2005
  • J.D., College of William & Mary, 2008, Order of Barristers
  • North Carolina, 2008
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of North Carolina, 2008
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of North Carolina, 2010
  • U.S. District Court, Middle District of North Carolina, 2010
  • Virginia, 2010
  • Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, 2013
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Virginia, 2018

100 North Tryon Street
Suite 4700
Charlotte, NC 28202-4003

M. Cabell Clay

News & Events
Professional Affiliations

Cabell Clay brings savvy and pragmatic judgment, and extensive counseling and litigation experience, to assist a wide-ranging set of clients, with both employment matters and commercial disputes.  

Cabell appreciates that every business is unique and believes that understanding a clients’ business model, culture, and needs is crucial to successful attorney-client partnerships. Whether it involves high stakes litigation defense or review of employment practices and policies, Cabell’s clients know that they can count on her to develop advice and strategies that align closely with their long-term goals and interests.  

Cabell routinely advises clients on a variety of employment matters, including employment agreements, restrictive covenants, trade secret protections, employee discipline issues and terminations, severance agreements, employment handbooks and policies, ADA accommodation requests, FMLA compliance, discrimination and harassment issues, and wage & hour compliance and audits.

Cabell also handles wide-ranging employment and commercial litigation, including trade secret misappropriation litigation, DOL investigations, restrictive covenant disputes, management representation in Title VII, ADA, ADEA, and wage & hour litigation, as well as proceedings before the EEOC and corresponding state and local agencies. Additionally, Cabell has substantial experience in handling class action defense, internal investigations, contract claims, securities and mortgage fraud defense, unfair trade practices claims, and civil appeals.

In addition to her extensive civil trial experience out of her work with the Firm’s clients, Cabell spent six months on special assignment as an Assistant District Attorney in the Mecklenburg County District Attorney’s Office, where she honed her trial skills by successfully prosecuting misdemeanors in both District and Superior Courts.

In addition to her commitment to serving the best interests of her clients, Cabell has a distinguished record of public service engagement and leadership. Over the last five years, she has contributed over 2,500 hours to pro bono efforts, community service, and bar leadership.  Cabell has been active in assisting victims of domestic violence in obtaining domestic violence protective orders, representing the best interests of children caught in the middle of high conflict custody disputes, and in providing housing rights advice through Legal Aid of North Carolina’s Lawyer on the Line program.  She has been especially active on behalf of Charlotte’s youth in need.  Along with serving as a member of the Junior League of Charlotte and a volunteer judge for the Assistance League of Charlotte’s Teen Court, Cabell is a member of the Steering Committee for Chameleon’s Journey, a grief camp for children run by Hospice and Palliative Care Greater Charlotte Region.  Cabell also serves on the Board of Directors for the Council for Children’s Rights, a non-profit in Charlotte that stands up for the rights of every child to be healthy, safe, and well-educated.  For this work and more broadly for her service to the profession, Cabell has been repeatedly recognized for outstanding leadership within the Mecklenburg County Bar, the North Carolina Bar Association Young Lawyers Division, and the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division.

Publications and Speaking Engagements

  • Moderator, COVID-19 – Health Concerns and Privacy Issues, AIJA’s Labour Law Commission Day, October 2020
  • Author, The Status of Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation Discrimination in the Workplace, Westlaw Journal Employment, December 3, 2019
  • Presenter, Litigation Tech: 2020 and Beyond, International Association of Young Lawyers (AIJA) Half Year Conference, Miami, Florida, October 2019
  • Moderator & Presenter, How to Keep Your Workforce Happy, International Association of Young Lawyers (AIJA) Annual Labor Conference, Lisbon, Portugal, October 2019
  • Presenter, Ethical Considerations in Joint Representation, NCBA Annual Review CLE, October 2019
  • Presenter, Navigating Sex, Gender, and Orientation in the Workplace, Trial Network’s Litigation Management in a New York Minute – 2019 Edition, August 2019
  • Co-Author, Considerations In Protecting Trade Secrets During Litigation, Law360, June 14, 2019
  • Facilitator, Protecting Client Information During Litigation, Trial Network’s Litigation Management Supercourse, April 2019
  • Moderator, Effecting Change Behind the Scenes: Insight into the role of a Hill Staffer, American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division Spring Conference, May 2019
  • Moderator, 2019 Spring Professionalism for New Attorneys (PNA) course, North Carolina Bar Association, May 2019
  • Moderator, Appointed: Opportunities to Shape Government and the Judiciary Through Local and State Appointments, American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division, October 2018
  • Presenter, Fitting Public Service into a Private Practice, William & School of Law Commencement Ceremony, May 2018
  • Presenter, 6th Annual Leadership Conference, William & School of Law, September 2017
  • Co-Author, A New Litigator’s Guide: Top 5 Tips for Court Prep, Law360, July 9, 2014
  • Presenter, USAO’s Engage – Teen Dating Violence Summit, February 2014
  • Co-Author, Civil Litigators’ Insights from the District Attorney’s Office, North Carolina Lawyer, November 2013
  • Panelist, Professionalism for New Admittees, Mecklenburg County Bar Young Lawyers Division, September 2013
  • Presenter, 50B Order Mock Consent Negotiation CLE, February 2013
  • Presenter, Domestic Violence Mock Trial CLE, February 2012

Of Note

  • Best Lawyers in America, Commercial Litigation, 2020-2021; Litigation - Labor and Employment, 2021
  • North Carolina Pro Bono Honor Society, 2019
  • American Bar Association (ABA) On the Rise – Top 40 Young Lawyer, 2019
  • North Carolina Super Lawyers, Rising Star in Business Litigation, 2014 - 2021
  • Business North Carolina Legal Elite "Young Gun", 2019, 2021
  • Council for Children’s Rights, Board of Directors, 2014 – present
    • Immediate Past President, Board of Director, July 2019 - present
    • President, Board of Directors, July 2018 – June 2019
    • President-Elect, Board of Directors, July 2017 – June 2018
    • Chair, Fund Development Committee, July 2016 – June 2017
  • University of Virginia Jefferson Scholar Selection Committee, 2019
  • Hospice & Palliative Care Greater Charlotte Region (HPCCR), Steering Committee for Chameleon’s Journey, Aug 2014 – present
  • North Carolina Legal Aid Lawyer on the Line, Pro Bono Volunteer, 2014 – present
  • Junior League of Charlotte, Active Member, Fall 2009 – Spring 2019; Sustainer Spring 2019 - present
  • Assistance League of Charlotte, Mecklenburg County Teen Court, Volunteer Judge, Fall 2013 – present
  • Woman of the Year, Women Lawyers of Charlotte, December 2018
  • Star of the Year, American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division, August 2018
  • Taylor Reveley III Citizen Lawyer Award, William & Mary School of Law, May 2018
  • Outstanding Collaborative Project Pro Bono Award, Mecklenburg County Bar, 2018
  • Younger Lawyer Pro Bono Award, North Carolina Bar Association, 2017
  • Charles F. Blanchard Outstanding Young Lawyer of the Year, North Carolina Bar Association Young Lawyers Division, 2016
  • Sally & Bill Van Allen Public Service Award, June 2014
  • Friend of the Association Award, North Carolina Association of Feeding America Food Banks, April 2014
  • Safe Alliance, Commitment to Justice Award, 2012, 2013 & 2014
  • UVaClub of Charlotte, Co-President, 2011 – 2014
  • Young Affiliates of the Mint, Board Member, 2011 – 2014
  • William & Mary Greater Charlotte Alumni Board, Member, 2009 – 2014

Professional Affiliations

  • Mecklenburg County Bar
    • Board of Directors, ABA HOD Representative, 2019 - present
    • Board of Directors, 2012 – 2015
    • Member, Community Service Committee, Young Lawyers Division, 2009 – 2015
  • North Carolina Bar Association & Foundation 
    • Member, Fellows of the Young Lawyers Division, December 2019
    • Chair, Young Lawyers Division, July 2019  – Present
    • Chair-Elect, Young Lawyers Division, July 2018 – June 2019
    • Member, North Carolina Bar Foundation Endowment Committee, July 2018 – June 2019
    • Secretary, Young Lawyers Division, July 2017 – June 2018
    • Younger Lawyer Pro Bono Award, 2017
    • Administrative Division Director, Young Lawyers Division, July 2016 – June 2017
    • Charles F. Blanchard Outstanding Young Lawyer of the Year, Young Lawyers Division, 2016
    • Volunteer Coordinator of Disaster Legal Services for Victims of Hurricane Matthew, Young Lawyers Division, October 2016 – May 2017
    • Chair, How-To Practice Law Task Force, Young Lawyers Division, July 2015 – June 2016
    • Chair, Legal Feeding Frenzy, Young Lawyers Division, July 2012 – June 2014
  • American Bar Association
    • Star of the Year, Young Lawyers Division, August 2019
    • Civic Engagement Director, Young Lawyers Division, January 2018 – August 2019
    • Star of the Year, Young Lawyers Division, August 2018
    • Administrative Director, August 2017 – July 2018
    • National Conferences Team, Young Lawyers Divisions, August 2016 – July 2017
    • District 9 (NC) Representative, Young Lawyers Division, August 2014 – July 2016 
  • American Bar Foundation
    • Life Fellow, 2018 
  • Women Lawyers of Charlotte
    • Member
    • Woman of the Year, 2018 
  • The Virginia Bar Association
    • Member
  •  International Association of Young Lawyers
    • Member