She focuses her practice on divorce, child custody, child support, alimony, equitable distribution, prenuptial agreements, contract enforcement and other family law matters. Tonya works with her clients to solve problems and to reach durable, enduring resolutions.
Tonya is skilled in collaborative divorce and a proponent of divorce with dignity and integrity. While she recognizes that clients are often most satisfied when cases resolve through settlement agreement, Tonya understands that some cases must go to court. Having argued and tried hundreds of motions and cases in North Carolina courts, Tonya is an experienced litigator who fiercely advocates for her clients in the courtroom.
For Tonya, each client is a personal relationship. Each client receives individualized attention and tailored service and the feeling that they are Tonya’s top priority – and they are. From the very first meeting, Tonya identifies clients’ goals, guides clients through family law process and sets expectations for possible and achievable resolutions. Whether through settlement or trial, she partners with clients in creating dynamic, tactical plans that reflect individual priorities, goals and circumstances.
Tonya takes a compassionate and empathetic approach to divorce advocacy. She recognizes that for many of her clients this time is one of the most difficult and emotionally exhausting periods of their life. In providing considered, reasoned, and time-tested advice, Tonya works to achieve both immediate and long-term outcomes that respect the primary objectives of the client.
Taking an assertive and straightforward approach to client representation, Tonya plans each step of a case while giving her clients specific tools to direct the case’s outcome. One of her greatest satisfactions is in knowing her clients have received both the guidance they need along with the benefits they are entitled.
Since 2007, Tonya has practiced family and domestic law exclusively in Mecklenburg and surrounding counties, including Cabarrus, Union, Gaston and Lincoln. Tonya has been recognized for her accomplishments in family law by Legal Elite of NC and Super Lawyers of NC. She frequently presents at legal education events on legal developments and family law litigation tactics.
In 2011, Tonya completed an eight-day trial school program through the American Bar Association Family Law Section and the National Institute for Trial Advocacy. Since 2013, Tonya has remained a North Carolina Board Certified Specialist in Family Law. In 2015, she completed a two-day training for Collaborative Law Practice and is a member of the Charlotte Collaborative Divorce Professionals. In 2019, she completed instruction titled “Advance Collaborative Divorce Training.”
Tonya lives in Charlotte with her husband, Sean P. Smith, a Mecklenburg County District Court Judge since 2011, and their son and daughter.