Regina M. Banis, LLC

Legal Excellence, Personalized Service: Your Trusted Advocates.

With nearly three decades of expertise serving the Lowcountry, we stand prepared to assist you in navigating your real estate, family law, and estate planning & probate needs.

Law firm, South Carolina Lowcountry

Practice Areas

Family Law - Divorce

Navigating Divorce in South Carolina

Discovering the Right Path Forward

In South Carolina, divorces can be categorized as either "at-fault" or "no-fault." Here's a breakdown to guide you through the grounds for divorce in our state.

No-Fault Divorce: Living Separate and Apart

South Carolina's "no-fault" divorce is centered around living separately and apart without cohabitation for a minimum of one year. The option to file a Separate and Support Maintenance action arises as soon as the decision to live separately is made. This action creates a clear line for the court to use when distributing assets and debts.

At-Fault Divorce: Establishing Grounds

For those pursuing an at-fault divorce, proof must be provided to demonstrate entitlement due to the spouse's responsibility for the marriage's breakdown. Grounds for an at-fault divorce include:

  • Adultery
  • Physical cruelty
  • Habitual drunkenness or drug use
  • Desertion for a period of one year

Successfully proving your spouse's role in the marriage's breakdown may influence the court to award a more favorable property settlement or spousal support. However, it's important to note that at-fault divorces often involve heightened conflict, potentially leading to prolonged, expensive litigation and emotional upheaval for the family.

Regina M. Banis, LLC: Your Compass in Divorce

At Regina M. Banis, LLC, we comprehend the intricate challenges associated with ending a marriage. Our team is dedicated to guiding you through the entire process, offering support and expertise from the initial steps to the final resolution.

Estate Planning

Crafting Legacies, Ensuring Futures: Estate Planning with Regina M. Banis, LLC

At Regina M. Banis, LLC, we understand that estate planning is not just about documents; it's about securing the future for you and your loved ones. With a legal practice deeply rooted in South Carolina since 1994, Regina M. Banis brings a wealth of experience to the delicate art of estate planning.

Our estate planning practice goes beyond the conventional. We don't just draft wills and trusts; we tailor comprehensive strategies that reflect your unique circumstances and aspirations. Whether you're safeguarding assets, planning for the next generation, or navigating the complexities of probate avoidance, we're here to guide you with precision and care.

Regina, a trailblazer in the legal landscape, founded this firm in 2007 with a vision to provide not just legal services but a personalized approach to estate planning. As a trusted figure in Beaufort, Jasper, Hampton, Colleton, and Charleston counties, Regina M. Banis, LLC is your partner in shaping legacies that endure.

Our commitment is to empower you with the knowledge and tools necessary to make informed decisions about your estate. From advanced healthcare directives to intricate tax planning, we address every facet of estate planning with the diligence and expertise that defines our practice.

Regina M. Banis, LLC: Where your legacy is our priority, and the future is meticulously planned.


Probate Proficiency at Regina M. Banis, LLC

Navigating the complexities of probate requires not only legal acumen but also compassion for those facing the challenges of managing an estate. At Regina M. Banis, LLC, our probate practice stands as a pillar of support for families in Beaufort, Jasper, Hampton, Colleton, and Charleston counties.

With a legacy of legal excellence since 1994, Regina M. Banis brings her seasoned expertise to the probate process. Whether you're facing the intricacies of estate administration, ensuring the rightful distribution of assets, or addressing potential disputes, we are here for you.

As a South Carolina certified family court mediator since 2009, Regina approaches probate matters with a unique skill set, fostering resolution and understanding in times of emotional strain. Our commitment extends beyond legal formalities; we prioritize your peace of mind during these sensitive proceedings.

Regina M. Banis, LLC is not merely a law firm; it's a partner in your probate journey, providing clarity and support every step of the way. Your peace of mind is our priority, and we stand ready to guide you through the probate process with diligence, professionalism, and a compassionate touch.

Guardian ad Litem

Protecting the Best Interests of the Child: The Role of a Guardian ad Litem

In legal proceedings involving minor children, a Guardian ad Litem (GAL) steps in as a court-appointed legal guardian. At Regina M. Banis, LLC, we recognize the profound responsibility that comes with representing the best interests of children.

Our Role as Guardian ad Litem:

Upon appointment, our dedication to serving the needs of minor children extends throughout the legal proceedings. The scope of our duties is tailored to the ages of those involved and the unique circumstances of each case. Here's an overview of how we fulfill our role:

  1. Gathering Comprehensive Evidence:
    • We meticulously gather essential evidence by compiling relevant facts.
    • Conducting interviews, investigating concerns, and obtaining school, criminal, and medical records are integral parts of our evidence-gathering process
  2. Providing Support:
    • Understanding the family dynamics is crucial. We familiarize ourselves through observation and monitoring, providing both emotional and legal support to address the needs of the children involved.
  3. Making Crucial Recommendations:
    • Acting in the best interests of the child, we assess the necessity of psychological evaluations or counseling.
    • Our role includes making recommendations to the court regarding parenting time, ensuring decisions are aligned with the well-being of those we represent.
  4. Collaborating with Legal Entities:
    • We work collaboratively with attorneys to understand their positions on pertinent issues.
    • Assisting the court by offering testimony, filing motions, conducting discovery, and examining witnesses during trial are integral aspects of our collaboration.
  5. Ensuring Compliance:
    • Monitoring and ensuring compliance with court orders is a key component of our role. We are steadfast in our commitment to guaranteeing the represented person's needs are met.
  6. Making Recommendations:
    • Our recommendations, grounded in a thorough understanding of the case, serve the best interests of the child.
    • Whether it involves suggesting psychological evaluations or counseling, our aim is to contribute to decisions that foster the well-being of the children we represent.

At Regina M. Banis, LLC, our Guardian ad Litem services embody a commitment to fairness, compassion, and an unwavering focus on the best interests of the children involved in legal proceedings.


Navigating Family Transitions: Mediation for Compassionate Resolution

In the realm of family law, the challenges extend beyond legal intricacies; they delve into deeply personal and often emotionally charged territories.

Why Choose Mediation?

Mediation emerges as a beacon of hope, offering a private, voluntary, and confidential avenue for alternative dispute resolution. At Regina M. Banis, LLC, we understand that family transitions, be it separation, divorce, child custody matters, or division of assets and debts, require a delicate touch.

The Role of Certified Family Law Mediator:

In South Carolina, mediation with a certified family court mediator is a prerequisite before scheduling a trial in family law cases. Our Certified Family Law Mediator guides clients across the state, steering them toward personalized solutions and resolutions.

Your Comfort, Your Terms:

Meetings unfold in a private and comforting office setting or can seamlessly transition to remote sessions, ensuring flexibility tailored to your needs. Our goal is to provide a tranquil space for addressing your specific concerns, saving you from the strain and expense associated with a trial.

Regina M. Banis, LLC is committed to facilitating a peaceful and empowering approach to family law matters. Let us guide you through the resolution process with compassion and expertise.

Custody and Visitation

Navigating Child Custody: Crafting Paths to Family Harmony

In the challenging landscape of divorce, child custody and parenting time often emerge as emotionally charged focal points. At Regina M. Banis, LLC, we specialize in employing negotiation, mediation, and litigation strategies to guide our clients from Beaufort County to Charleston County through the intricate process of building custody agreements and visitation schedules. Our aim is to instill a sense of security and peace for both parents and children.

Consult with an Experienced Child Custody Attorney:

Contact us to explore your child custody and parenting plan options with the guidance of an experienced child custody attorney.

Understanding Legal and Physical Custody:

In South Carolina, child custody encompasses two primary types:

  • Physical Custody: Refers to the time spent with each parent.
  • Legal Custody: Involves decision-making power concerning medical care, religion, education, extra-curricular activities, and the general upbringing of the child.

Diverse Visitation Possibilities:

Crafting a customized custody plan involves considering various combinations of physical and legal custody. For instance, joint legal custody may be complemented by one parent having primary physical custody, with the other enjoying ample visitation (referred to as "parenting time"). The specificity of a visitation schedule is entirely flexible, detailing weekends, holidays, and transportation arrangements.

Custody Determined by the Best Interests of the Child:

South Carolina courts employ the "best interests of the child" standard in custody decisions. Recognizing that parents may define these best interests differently, the court considers several factors, including:

  • Fitness of the parents, including issues like substance abuse or domestic violence.
  • Primary caretaker status.
  • Education and parenting skills.
  • Conduct of each parent.
  • Opinions of experts and relevant professionals.
  • Child's preference.
  • Age, health, and sex of the child.
  • Quality of educational opportunities.
  • Religious beliefs.
  • Expressed desire to relocate if awarded custody.

Our commitment extends to assisting both mothers and fathers in securing custody, recognizing that the court remains impartial when determining the best interests of the child.

Regina M. Banis, LLC: Guiding Parents, Building Relationships.

Real Estate

Your Partner in Real Estate Ventures

Acquiring property, be it a primary residence, an investment property, or a vacation home, entails substantial financial commitment and a myriad of decisions. Navigating this complex terrain requires seasoned guidance and expertise. At Regina M. Banis, LLC, we offer the experience and knowledge to lead you seamlessly through the entire process.

Comprehensive Real Estate Representation:

Our services extend to representing clients in various real estate transactions, including:

  • Residential and Commercial Real Estate Closings: Ensuring a smooth and secure transition in property ownership.
  • Mortgage Refinances: Streamlining the process of refinancing for optimal financial outcomes.
  • Home Equity Lines of Credit: Guiding you through leveraging your property's equity responsibly.

Regina M. Banis, LLC is your trusted partner in real estate, committed to ensuring your property transactions are not just transactions but milestones in your financial journey.


Embracing New Beginnings: Adoption Services at Regina M. Banis, LLC

At Regina M. Banis, LLC, we recognize that the journey to building a family through adoption is a profound and emotional experience. With nearly 30 years of dedicated legal expertise in the Lowcountry, we are honored to guide you through the complexities of the adoption process.

Our Comprehensive Adoption Services:

Navigating the legal landscape of adoption requires a compassionate and knowledgeable advocate. Regina M. Banis brings her wealth of experience to the forefront, offering comprehensive adoption services tailored to your unique needs. Whether you are exploring domestic or international adoption, seeking assistance with agency or private adoptions, or navigating stepparent or relative adoptions, our firm is committed to facilitating a smooth and fulfilling process.

Inclusive Support for Every Family:

We proudly extend our services to include adult adoptions and LGBTQIA+ adoptions. Whether you are welcoming an adult into your family or seeking to adopt as an LGBTQIA+ individual or couple, we provide knowledgeable and inclusive support. Our commitment to your peace of mind and the well-being of every family member remains unwavering.

Guiding Your Unique Journey:

From the initial consultations to finalizing the legalities, we prioritize your unique journey and the well-being of everyone involved. Our adoption services extend beyond legal formalities; we provide emotional support, ensuring that every family, regardless of its composition, feels confident and secure as they embark on this transformative journey.

Regina M. Banis, LLC is honored to be a part of your adoption story, assisting you in creating a loving and permanent home for every individual and family.

We are ready to help you.
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About Regina M. Banis, LLC

About Regina M. Banis, LLC: Your Partner in Legal Excellence

Established by Regina M. Banis in 2007, Regina M. Banis, LLC is a distinguished full-service law firm committed to delivering exceptional, results-oriented service to our clients. With Regina's extensive legal experience dating back to 1994, our firm has garnered a notable AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell. This prestigious rating, the highest attainable for legal skills and ethics, reflects the esteem of Regina's peers in the legal community.

Our Evolving Practice Areas:

Over the years, our practice has evolved, and we now provide services in the following areas:

  • Residential and Commercial Real Estate Closings: Facilitating smooth and secure property transactions.
  • Matrimonial and Family Law: Providing comprehensive support in family-related legal matters.
  • Family Court Mediation: Offering a skilled and neutral approach to dispute resolution.
  • Estate Planning and Probate: Crafting tailored solutions for your estate-related concerns.
  • Business Formation and Closings: Guiding businesses from inception to closure.

Client-Centric Excellence:

Our commitment to building meaningful relationships with each client has been recognized, leading to accolades such as Best Attorney in Best of Bluffton 2008 and 2010, and Best Attorney in Sun City Select 2014 and 2017. At Regina M. Banis, LLC, our primary goal is to resolve your legal issues efficiently and as stress-free as possible, ensuring that your experience with our firm is both effective and supportive.

Law firm Legal Team

Meet the team

Meet Our Law Firm Family

Regina M. Banis

Regina M. Banis, a seasoned South Carolina attorney, has been practicing law in Bluffton and Hilton Head Island since 1994. She established Regina M. Banis, LLC in 2007. As a sole practitioner, Regina has embraced a diverse scope of law to better serve her clients' needs. Her areas of practice include residential and commercial real estate closings, family law litigation, acting as a Guardian ad Litem in custody and visitation disputes, family court mediation, estate planning, probate, and handling various types of adoptions, including those within the LGBTQIA+ community. Regina's commitment extends beyond the courtroom; she values the relationships forged during her tenure as the managing member of the residential real estate division of Novit & Scarminach, P.A. from 2001 to 2006. A dedicated community member, Regina has served on the Town of Bluffton Beautification Committee and is the Past President of the Zonta International Club of Bluffton. Known for her unique touch, Regina is the barefoot, ukulele-playing attorney who ensures her clients feel like family.

Misti Pinckney

Office Manager and Real Estate Paralegal
Misti Cramer Pinckney has worked for Regina since 1996. She is the firm’s Office Manager and managing real estate closing paralegal. Misti has a wealth of knowledge on handling real estate closings. Clients and real estate agents alike love her prompt communication style. Misti is a lowcountry native, having been born and raised in Jasper County. She is a 1990 graduate of Thomas Heyward Academy, and earned her Associates Degree with honors in Business/Paralegal/Legal Assistant from the Technical College of the Lowcountry in 1993. Misti has a keen wit and entertains us with her Southern-isms.

Emily Keller

Emily K. Keller has worked for Regina as a paralegal since 2011. She is the firm’s family law paralegal, assisting with all aspects of Regina’s family law practice, including contested and uncontested divorce actions, Guardian ad Litem matters, mediation, and collaborative divorce actions. Emily is also the firm’s estate planning and probate paralegal. Emily is a Lowcountry native, having been born in Savannah and raised in Savannah, Charleston, and Bluffton. She is as fierce at Crossfit as she is working for our clients.

Sage Carpenter

Client Concierge Specialist
Sage Carpenter has worked for Regina since 2019. She is one of our Client Concierge Specialists. Sage acts as a conduit between our clients and the rest of our staff. She insures clients’ concerns are addressed in a timely manner. Sage was born in upstate New York. Sage’s family vacationed in the lowcountry for many years before they moved here when she was seven. Sage graduated from May River High School in 2018. Sage is a lifelong athlete who participates in local 5K races every chance she gets.

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