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Joel R. Rhine - Wilmington, NC

1612 Military Cutoff RoadSuite 300 Wilmington, NC 28403

Super Lawyers®


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Updated: 02/18/2024

Wilmington Catastrophic Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Lawyer


Joel R. Rhine is nationally recognized for his local and national trial work...

Joel R. Rhine is nationally recognized for his local and national trial work. Mr. Rhine has decades of experience in complex litigation matters, including:

• Serious motor vehicle accidents such as car accidents, 18-wheeler and tractor-trailer accidents, and other types of collisions
• Defective drugs and medical devices
• Other products liability claims
• Work-related accidents
• Construction litigation claims
• Business and civil litigation
• Wage and hour claims
• Medical malpractice
• Premises liability claims
• Data breach litigation
• Construction Accidents
• Construction Defects
• Resort & Recreational Accidents

Mr. Rhine’s recent results include: a $9.0 million wrongful death judgment in North Carolina State Court; being co-lead counsel in largest individual Chinese Drywall settlement, which was valued at over $24 million; obtaining a $3.1 million settlement that occurred during trial in a bus collision case; receiving a 2.0 million recovery related to a motorcycle- truck accident; and $300,000 for the victim of a dog bite.

Mr. Rhine’s hard work has been recognized by his peers and many publications. Mr. Rhine has been recognized repeatedly as a SuperLawer - Top 100 North Carolina Lawyers; Business North Carolina's Legal Elite; Best Lawyers; National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Trial Lawyers; and has enjoyed an AV rating by Martindale Hubbell since 2002 and more.

Mr. Rhine achieved his first eight-figure verdict in a federal jury trial at age 30. Mr. Rhine filed the first lawsuit in what became the multi-decade, multi-state synthetic stucco (EIFS) litigation, where he represented thousands of homeowners against a variety of constructions participants and manufacturers. When this mass tort litigation bogged down, Mr. Rhine began taking the cases to trial. The first trial ended in a settlement after six weeks of testimony. Later, Mr. Rhine obtained the nation’s first verdict against an EIFS manufacturer. This multimillion dollar verdict was a catalyst for a national EIFS settlement against this EIFS manufacturer.

Mr. Rhine sought new challenges after the EIFS litigation, including class actions of many types, business dispute litigation, catastrophic personal injury and wrong death cases, product liability actions and data breach cases. He is regularly invited to participate in interesting, important, and complex litigation by attorneys who know his trial talents, integrity, and work ethic. He has been counsel, lead counsel, or a member of the Plaintiff Steering Committee in dozens of class actions and national mass tort cases.

Mr. Rhine’s present caseload includes:

• Catastrophic construction accident cases, including several multi-million dollar deck and porch collapse case;
• Numerous catastrophic personal injury cases, including automobile, trucking and product liability cases,
• Co-counsel and co-lead counsel in approximately 700 Chinese Drywall cases pending in the Eastern District of Louisiana,
• Co-lead counsel in several consumer class actions against manufacturer Louisiana Pacific pending in numerous jurisdictions.
• Numerous Federal cases against Pella Corporation for defective windows.
• A member of the Plaintiff Steering Committee in the Benicar MDL litigation.
• Numerous multi-family construction defect cases.
• Mr. Rhine is involved in dozens of class actions and national mass tort cases, including numerous data breach cases, defective medical devices (such as IVC filters) and pharmaceutical cases.

As a frequently requested speaker on legal topics for trial lawyers and judges, Mr. Rhine speaks at continuing education seminars on topics ranging from trial skills, class actions, ethics, and more. Mr. Rhine has presented on multiple occasions throughout the United States for, among others, Mass Torts Made Perfect, North Carolina Advocates of Justice, North Carolina Bar Association, Mealeys, Lorman, and the AEI-Brookings Joint Center Judicial Education Program.
Mr. Rhine received his Juris Doctor degree from Wake Forest University in 1988, where he was elected to the Wake Forest University Law Review. He was published twice in the Law Review while a student and received the Wake Forest Law Review award.

Mr. Rhine received a BA degree from the University of Tampa in 1985, where he received an academic scholarship, was inducted into four honor societies, was on the Dean's List from 1982 through 1985, was awarded the Political Science Graduate Award for attaining the highest GPA among Political Science graduates, and was a letterman on the varsity baseball team.

Mr. Rhine was admitted to The North Carolina State Bar in 1988.

Mr. Rhine remains involved in many legal associations. These include: New Hanover County Bar Association (President, 1997-1998); American Association for Justice; Public Justice Foundation; North Carolina Bar Association; North Carolina State Bar; and North Carolina Advocates for Justice. Mr. Rhine is a has participated in executive boards and leadership positions in many of these organizations and his participation in various sections changes based upon his current caseload and whether pressing issues about which he is interested are being dealt with by these sections.

Finally, and above all, Mr. Rhine is a devoted family man. While he works extremely long hours and appears in courtrooms across the country, he spends his leisure hours with Alice, his wife of 25 years, and their two children.

About Joel R. Rhine

Practice Areas

  • Catastrophic Personal Injury and Wrongful Death
  • Serious Motor Vehicle Accidents such as car accidents, 18-Wheeler And Tractor-Trailer Accidents, and other types of collisions
  • Work-Related Accidents
  • Business Litigation
  • Real Property Litigation
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Premises Liability Claims
  • Construction Accidents
  • Collapse Cases
  • Construction Defects
  • Construction Litigation Claims
  • Products Liability Claims
  • Variety of Class Actions and Mass Torts
  • Resort & Recreational Accidents
  • Defective Drugs and Medical Devices
  • Data Breach Litigation


  • 100%


  • English
  • Spanish


Bar Admissions

  • North Carolina, 1988
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of North Carolina, 1988
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 4th Circuit, 1988

Other Affiliations

  • American Bar Association (Member, Litigation, Tort, Insurance and Construction Sections)
  • North Carolina Bar Association (Member, Litigation, Tort and Insurance Sections)


  • Wake Forest University School of Law, Winston Salem, North Carolina, 1988
    Honors: Scholastic Honors List
    Law Review: Wake Forest Law Review, 1986-1988, Award for Outstanding Student Publication
  • University of Tampa, Tampa, Florida
    Honors: cum laude
    Honors: G.P.A.:3.7/4.0, Outstanding Political Science Graduate Award (Highest Honors: G.P.A. in Major)
    Honors: Varsity Baseball Letterman

Fraternities and Sororities

  • Alpha Chi
  • Pi Sigma Alpha
  • Phi Alpha Theta
  • Omicron Delta Kappa

Past Positions

  • Hunton & Williams

Pro Bono Activities

  • Volunteer Lawyers Program, Member

Classes and Seminars

  • "Adding Tools to the Construction Lawyer's Tool Belt". Hot Topics in Construction Law. 2010 Construction Law Winter Program. Issues Involving Chinese Drywall Litigation , North Carolina Bar Association
  • Condominium Construction Issues in North Carolina, Lorman CLE Seminar
  • Contracts for Construction Lawyers: How to Get the Party Started
  • Construction Defect & Mold Litigation Conference, Mealy's Annual Convention
  • Judicial Symposium on "Critical Issues in Construction Defects Litigation, AEI-Brookings Joint Center Judicial Education Program
  • Handling Toxic Mold Disputes: A Guide to Recent Developments and Effective Litigation Strategies, Lorman
  • Toxic Mold: A Legal Primer, CAI's 25th Annual Community Association Law Seminar
  • Strategies on Water Intrusion and Mold Litigation for Plaintiffs' Firm Retreat, Mass Torts Made Perfect
  • Advances in Environmental Mold Issues in North Carolina, Lorman
  • Mold Litigation - Beyond the Basics II, Harris Martin
  • Securities, Drug & Environmental Litigation, Mass Torts Made Perfect


Other Sources of Feedback About Joel R. Rhine

Included on the 2024 North Carolina list

Past Lists

  • 2023 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2022 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2021 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2020 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2019 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2018 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2017 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2016 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2015 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2014 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2011 North Carolina Super Lawyers list
  • 2010 North Carolina Super Lawyers list

View the profile for Joel R. Rhine on Super Lawyers


  • Wake Forest Representative for the North Carolina Bar Association
  • Dean's List, 1982 - 1985
  • Who's Who Among Students in American Colleges and Universities
  • Super Lawyer – Top 100 North Carolina Lawyers
  • Business North Carolina’s Legal Elite
  • Best Lawyers
  • National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • AV Rating, Martindale Hubbell, 2002 - 2022
  • Tier 1 Best Firm by U.S. News and World Reports


Office Information


1612 Military Cutoff RoadSuite 300 Wilmington, NC 28403


  • 910-772-9062

Accepts Credit Cards


Office Hours

Mon – Fri 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM



  • Note, The North Carolina Supreme Court Revokes the Marital Presumption and Adopts the Analytic Approach to the Classification of Personal Injury Settlements under N.C. Gen. Stat. 50-20, Johnson v. Johnson 22 Wake Forest Law Review 931, 1987
  • Note, The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals Finds Title VII Not to be the Exclusive Remedy Available to State and Local Government Employees: Keller v. Prince George's County Department of Social Services 23 Wake Forest Law Review 343, 1988

Representative Cases

  • Eubank, et al v. Pella Corporation and Pella Windows and Doors (United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, 06 C 44810)
  • Finerman et al v. Marriott Ownership Resorts, Inc, and International Cruise & Excursion Gallery (United States District Court, Middle District of Florida, 3:14-cv-1154)

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