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Terrill Johnson Harris

Terrill Johnson Harris

Partner in Charge

T (336) 378-5383
F (336) 378-5400

With 25 years of experience, Terri Harris has worked with all types of health care providers in navigating the many risks and challenges of the rapidly changing health care industry. Terri has developed a deep understanding of health care laws and regulations to aid health care clients in their compliance efforts and to assist clients who are alleged to have failed to comply with health care laws or regulations.  Terri has regularly advised clients regarding almost every aspect of health care operations, including Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement, certificate of need and facility licensure, the 340B program, confidentiality of medical information and HIPAA, medical staff and peer review, advance directives, professional discipline and licensure, risk management, operational policies, and contracting.

Terri has been involved in strategic planning for many different health care providers, including acute care hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, hospice agencies, home health agencies, rehabilitation companies, continuing care retirement communities, ambulatory surgical facilities, diagnostic centers, mobile medical equipment companies, and physician practices. She has worked with health care industry clients who seek to provide new or expanded services or acquire regulated equipment to obtain approval through the North Carolina Certificate of Need process.

In addition to her regulatory compliance practice, Terri has handled litigation at the trial and appellate levels, including jury and non-jury trials and arbitration in medical malpractice cases and commercial disputes in state and federal courts, as well as in the Office of Administrative Hearings, where she handles appeals of decisions by Certificate of Need, licensing, and other administrative agencies.

Terri has been a regular speaker and presenter on a variety of health care compliance and risk management topics and has spoken for programs sponsored by the American Health Lawyers Association, Dixon Hughes Goodman, and the Association for Home & Hospice Care of North Carolina, as well as for individual clients.

Along with extensive community involvement, Terri currently serves as an elected member of the firm's Management Committee and is the partner in charge of the Greensboro office.

Listed in North Carolina Super Lawyers
Listed in North Carolina Super Lawyers
  • North Carolina Super Lawyers, Listed Health Care (2009-2018), and as one of the "Top 50 Women" attorneys in North Carolina (2009, 2018)
  • Listed, The Best Lawyers in America® (Woodward/White, Inc.), Health Care Law (2007-2018), Commercial Litigation (2013-2018), Health Care Litigation (2018)
  • Recognized by Chambers and Partners, USA, as one of North Carolina Leaders, Healthcare (2015-2018)
  • Martindale-Hubbell's top ("AV") Peer Review Rating *

* CV, BV, and AV are registered certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedure's standards and policies.


Representative Work

  • Counseled providers concerning Medicare and Medicaid enrollment
  • Advised clients regarding licensure compliance and responses to  licensure and certification deficiency citations
  • Counseled clients on EMTALA compliance and responded to deficiency citations,  immediate jeopardy determinations, and fast track decertification
  • Worked closely with clients on HIPAA compliance, privacy breach notification, responses to investigations by the Office of Civil Rights, and meaningful use audits
  • Provided strategic guidance regarding appropriate structures for regulatory compliance in connection with acquisitions of health care facilities
  • Advised clients on Medicare Secondary Payor issues and Section 111 requirements
  • Defended clients in recoupment action based on ZPIC audits and handled related appeals
  • Worked with provider clients on self-disclosures and voluntary refunds in connection with overpayments, compensation issues, and employment of excluded individuals
  • Developed corporate compliance plans and policies for hospitals, physician practices, and long term care providers
  • Conducted compliance exit interviews
  • Supervised compliance audits by outside consultants
  • Represented clients in CON trials and appeals concerning operating rooms, acute care beds, endoscopy rooms, major hospital renovation and expansion  projects, free-standing emergency departments, major medical equipment,  skilled nursing facilities, and home health agencies
  • Provided extensive counseling concerning CON compliance and prepared numerous exemption notice letters and "no review" letters
  • Served as counsel in arbitration concerning dispute between two hospitals regarding CON settlement
  • Represented clients in NC Court of Appeals and Supreme Court in CON litigation concerning exemptions from CON Act
  • Served as counsel in federal court litigation concerning ownership of CON rights to skilled nursing facility following a bankruptcy sale
  • Counseled clients concerning and in preparation of resident admission agreements and arbitration agreements
  • Provided guidance regarding patient billing and collection policies and procedures
  • Advised clients concerning and in preparation of operational policies and procedures, forms and patient information hand-outs for hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and CCRCs
  • Provided guidance regarding informed consent, bioethical issues, and difficult patient discharges
  • Advised clients on peer review investigations
  • Counseled providers on scope of practice, supervision, and billing requirements for physician extenders
  • Worked closely with clients on risk management initiatives and investigations of incidents and sentinel events
  • Represented medical staff leadership and individual physicians in medical staff fair hearings
  • Handled appeals of long term care survey and penalty enforcement actions
  • Served as counsel in professional discipline and licensure litigation for physicians, psychologists, nurses, nursing home administrators
  • Represented clients in defending medical malpractice and products liability claims related to contaminated steroid products
  • Served as counsel preparing to file for injunctive relief in federal court to stop fast track decertification based on EMTALA deficiencies
  • Represented third parties in response to government investigation subpoenas
  • Represented long term care providers in over 100 claims, lawsuits, and arbitrations

Reported Cases

  • Surgical Care Affiliates, LLC and Blue Ridge Day Surgery Center, L.P., v. N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, __ N.C. App. ___, 762 S.E.2d 468, No. COA13-1322 (August 2014).
  • Lucille Crossman, Administrator of the Estate of Lionel Crossman, v. Life Care Centers of America, Inc., 738 S.E.2d 737 (N.C. Ct. App. 2013).
  • Hope-A Women's Cancer Center, P.A. v. N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, 203 N.C. App. 276, 691 S.E.2d 421 (2010); disc. review denied, 706 S.E.2d 254 (2011).
  • Forsyth Memorial Hosp. Inc. v. N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, 648 S.E.2d 212 (Mem) (2007).
  • Rutherford Hospital, Inc. v. RNH Partnership, 168 F.3d 693 (4th Cir. 1999).
  • Britthaven, Inc. v. North Carolina Department of Human Resources, 341 N.C. 418, 461 S.E.2d 754 (1995).
  • Marble Bank v. Commonwealth Land Title Ins. Co., 62 F.3d 1415 (4th Cir. 1995) (unpublished decision).

* Past success does not indicate the likelihood of success in any future legal representation.

Thought Leadership

Published Works

  • "Are Exit Interviews in Your Compliance Toolbox?," AHLA Fraud and Abuse Practice Group's Fraud & Abuse Newsletter, June 2015


  • Presenter, “Hospice Documentation: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly,” Association for Home & Hospice Care Leadership Conference, Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, October 9, 2017
  • Co-presenter, “Arbitration Agreements: What do the recent legal developments mean for you?” North Carolina Assisted Living Association Webinar, August 30, 2017
  • Co-presenter, "Social Media in the LTC Setting: Reducing Risks and Maximizing Benefits," Long Term Care Insurance ExecuSummit, Uncasville, Connecticut, June 27, 2017
  • Co-presenter, "EMTALA; Inpatient Care Reviews by Quality Improvement Organizations 'QIO'; Provider based issues," North Carolina Hospital Association's Regulatory Compliance Workshop, June 8, 2017
  • Presenter, "Risk Management Through Better Documentation and Communication," Holladay Pharmacy 8th Annual Educational Learning Program (HELP 2017), Greensboro, North Carolina, March 9, 2017
  • Co-presenter, Part Two, "Risks & Rewards of e-Communications and Social Media in Health Care" Georgia Hospital Association webinar, February 23, 2017
  • Co-presenter, Part One, "Risks & Rewards of e-Communications and Social Media in Health Care" Georgia Hospital Association webinar, January 26, 2017
  • Presenter, “Legal Issues for Wound Care Providers,” Carolinas Healthcare Wound Care Seminar, CMC NorthEast, Concord, North Carolina, April 22, 2016
  • Co-presenter, “Maintaining Privacy and Professionalism in an Increasingly Digital Word,” North Carolina Assisted Living Association 2015 Fall Conference, Raleigh, North Carolina, October 7, 2015
  • "Do We Really Need To?  Reasons for a Non-Medicare CCRC to Have a Compliance Program and How to Develop and Maintain An Effective Compliance Program," LeadingAge NC Regulatory Conference, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, August 20, 2015
  • "Maintaining Professionalism in an Increasingly Digital World," Greensboro Area Health Education Center (AHEC) 6th Annual Holladay Educational Learning Program, Greensboro, North Carolina, March 20, 2015
  • " Intersections of Dentistry and the Law," Greensboro, North Carolina, New Bridge Bank sponsored program, February 18, 2014
  • "Risk Management with Better Documentation and Communication," The Pines at Davidson, Davidson, North Carolina, November 1, 2011
  • "Significant Compliance Issues for Hospital Board Members," Dixon Hughes Goodman LLP Webinar, October 5, 2011
  • "Loss Prevention with Better Communication and Documentation," Neil Medical Group 8th Annual Educational Summit, June 29, 2011, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  • "Significant Compliance Issues for Hospital Board Members," Dixon Hughes Goodman LLP Annual Hospital Symposium, May 23-25, 2011, Isle of Palms, South Carolina
  • "Walking the Social Media Tightrope: Understanding the Risks That Surround Social Media," Smith Moore Leatherwood LLP Health Care Webinar, May 26, 2011
  • "Understanding the Risks that Surround Social Media," The Association for Home & Hospice Care of North Carolina, May 4, 2011, Durham, North Carolina
  • "Legal and Practical Considerations for Implementation of Electronic Health Records for Long Term Care," Long Term Care & The Law Program, American Health Lawyers Association, February 19, 2010, Miami, Florida
  • Campbell Law Journal Health Law Symposium, Practical Issues in Health Law, Current CON Issues, January 30, 2009, Raleigh, North Carolina
  • "Discoverability – How to Manage Medical Records Effectively," "Arbitration Agreements in the Senior Living Setting," and "The Seat You Don't Want to Sit In – The Do's & Don'ts of Being Deposed," BB&T Insurance Services, Inc., "Managing Risk in the Senior Living Setting," November 28, 2006, The Haven in the Village at Carolina Place, Pineville, North Carolina.
  • "Incident Reports and Documentation Reminders," Well Spring Retirement Community, June 6, 2006, Greensboro, North Carolina.
  • "Zeroing in on Arbitration and Mediation," North Carolina Bar Association, 2006 Health Law Section Annual Meeting, "Seeing the Forest and the Trees," May 5, 2006, North Carolina Bar Center, Cary, North Carolina
  • Speaker, "Managing the Impaired Physician," Greater Greensboro Medical Group Managers, January 26, 2006, Greensboro, North Carolina
  • "Investigations by DFS:  Suggestions for How to Respond from a Legal Perspective," North Carolina Chapter of American Society for Healthcare Risk Management, Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, May 12, 2004
  • "Overview of Verdicts and Settlements in North Carolina and Legal Perspectives on Arbitration in North Carolina," North Carolina Association of Non-Profit Homes for the Aging, New Bern, North Carolina, May 11, 2004
  • "HIPAA Update," North Carolina Association, Long Term Care Facilities, Greensboro, North Carolina, September 23, 2003
  • "HIPAA Training for Assisted Living Facilities," North Carolina Association, Long Term Care Facilities, Raleigh, North Carolina, March 25-27, 2003
  • "Ethical Considerations" and "Addressing Liability Concerns," Seminar on Legal Issues Impacting Long-Term and Home Health Care Providers in North Carolina, National Business Institute, Raleigh, North Carolina, December 13, 2002
  • "Fines and Penalties: A Lawyer's Perspective," North Carolina Association Long Term Care Facilities Annual Convention, Raleigh, North Carolina, September 24, 2002
  • "HIPAA Privacy Standards," AASC of North Carolina Fifteenth Annual Ambulatory Surgery Workshop, Wilmington, North Carolina, November 3, 2001


  • Women's Professional Forum, 1996-present
    • Board Member, 2013-2014
  • Friends Homes, Inc.
    • Board Member, 2007-2012, 2015-present (Vice-Chair, 2015; Chair, 2017)
    • Chair, Strategic Planning Committee, 2010-2012
  • Women's Resource Center, Volunteer, Attorney Hotline
  • New Garden Friends Meeting, Member and Trustee, Member of Scholarship and Hospitality Committees
  • Future Fund of the Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro
  • Walter Hines Page Senior High School, PTSA Volunteer
    • Grant Writing Committee, 2012-present
  • Duke University School of Law, J.D., with honors, 1990
  • Wake Forest University, B.A., magna cum laude, 1987
  • North Carolina, 1990
  • District of Columbia, 1991
  • United States Supreme Court, 2018
  • American Health Lawyers Association
  • American Bar Association - Health Law and Litigation Sections
  • North Carolina Bar Association - Health Law and Administrative Law Sections
  • North Carolina Society of Healthcare Attorneys
  • North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Greensboro, North Carolina Bar Association
  • District of Columbia Bar Association
  • Guilford Inn of Court, 2010-present
  • Fourth Circuit Judicial Conference, Permanent Member
  • Federal Bar Association, Middle District of North Carolina
Academic Honors
  • Member, Editorial Board, Duke Law Journal

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