Hayes Finley focuses her practice on issues surrounding environmental, land use, energy and administrative law. She navigates complex regulatory and political matters for her clients before government agencies, permitting officials and state and federal courts. She has represented developers and private businesses in environmental remediation and clean-up activities, negotiated resolution of environmental enforcement actions, represented local governments and private citizens in water supply planning and surface water disputes, and obtained local land use and zoning approvals for a wide range of projects.

She also has experience with the N.C. Brownfields Program, environmental due diligence and legal opinions for project financing transactions and has devoted part of her practice to the renewable energy and CleanTech sectors.

During law school, Hayes was an intern to Justice Cheri Beasley of the Supreme Court of North Carolina and Judge Richard Elmore of the North Carolina Court of Appeals. Before attending law school, she spent two years with the Peace Corps as a Small Enterprise Development and Ecotourism volunteer in Sengal, West Africa.

Representative Experience

Any result the lawyer or law firm may have achieved on behalf of clients in other matters does not necessarily indicate similar results can be obtained for other clients. 

  • Litigated statewide water allocation in the Office of Administrative Hearings under the North Carolina Interbasin Transfer Statute
  • Litigated insurance coverage for transporter liability under RCRA in State Court
  • Negotiated Brownfield Agreements with the NC Department of Environmental Quality for the redevelopment of contaminated properties across North Carolina
  • Represented citizens and developers before Boards of Adjustment and Boards of Commissioners seeking various land use and zoning requests or appeals

Professional and Civic Activities

  • North Carolina Bar Association, Environment, Energy and Natural Resources Section, 2017 – present 
  • North Carolina Bar Association, Zoning, Planning and Land Use Section, 2019 – present
  • Advanced Energy Board of Directors, 2019 – present 
  • Kidznotes Boardmember, 2016 – present
    • Treasurer, 2017 – 2019 

Honors and Awards

  • Recognized in Business North Carolina’s Legal Elite, Environmental, 2020 – 2021 
  • Selected to the North Carolina’s Rising Stars list by Super Lawyers (Thomson Reuters), Environmental Law, 2021 
  • Recognized in Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America (BL Rankings) in the field of Real Estate Law, 2021
  • Named to Triangle Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 list, 2018