James H. Jeffries IV Partner

With more than three decades of experience in the natural gas, telecommunications, and other regulated utility sectors, Jim Jeffries is viewed by clients as a seasoned business advisor on a broad range of energy and regulatory issues. He advises public and private companies and utilities on regulatory and enforcement matters before state public utility commissions and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, often serving as first chair in administrative trials.

Jim currently serves as regulatory counsel for three natural gas local distribution companies and an investor owned electric public utility. As regulatory counsel, he is involved in administrative litigation at the state and federal level in a variety of jurisdictions. Jim also has argued cases before the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, the North Carolina Supreme Court, the North Carolina Court of Appeals, and the United States Court of Federal Claims.

Utilizing his broad experience in the natural gas sector, Jim provides general business and strategic planning, upstream supply and capacity negotiation and compliance planning advice to natural gas companies and energy utilities. He has also advised clients on strategic acquisitions and joint ventures.

Jim has been board certified as a specialist in utilities law by the North Carolina State Bar. In addition to practicing law, he has served as a lieutenant colonel in the United States Marine Corps Reserve.

Experience

Below are recent proceedings in which Jim has served as first chair trial attorney:

Serve as first chair trial attorney in the representation of a natural-gas-only distributor in connection with a 2019 application for a general rate increase before the State Corporation Commission of Kansas.

Serve as first chair trial attorney in the representation of a natural gas distribution company in a 2019 general rate case proceeding seeking to increase its annual revenues before the North Carolina Utilities Commission.

Serve as first chair trial attorney in the representation of a natural gas distribution company in an annual base rate update proceeding in 2019 seeking to increase its annual revenues before the Public Service Commission of South Carolina.   

Serve as first chair trial attorney in the representation of a natural gas distribution company for two annual rate base adjustment/surcharge proceedings in 2019 for safety and reliability investment in Tennessee and North Carolina.

Serve as first chair trial attorney in representation of two major electric utilities in pending state rate case proceedings.

  • The University of North Carolina School of Law, JD, cum laude, Order of the Coif, Board of Editors, North Carolina Law Review, 1988
  • Duke University, BA, cum laude, 1980

Member, American Bar Association

Member, Energy Bar Association

Member, North Carolina Bar Association

Member, Mecklenburg County Bar

  • Panelist, "Utilities Law Specialization Roundtable," Utilities Specialization Committee, Raleigh, NC, November 1, 2019
  • Presenter, "Natural Gas Basics," EUCI, Houston, TX, March 7-8, 2016
  • Panelist, "The Progress of Implementing Decoupling," American Gas Association Legal Forum, Boston, MA, July 19-21, 2009
  • Panelist, "Gas Supply Marketing Roundtable," Southern Gas Association Conference, April 19, 2009
  • North Carolina
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims

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AV Rated, Martindale-Hubbell

Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America, Energy Law, Communications Law, Woodward/White, Inc., 2007–2020

Named a “Local Litigation Star,” Benchmark Litigation, as a “Future Star,” 2011–2012; Energy, 2013; and General Commercial, 2014–2018

Named to “North Carolina Super Lawyers,” Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, 2011-2012

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