J. Hamilton Garner, Partner

Hamilton Garner provides representation to individual and business clients.  His primary practice areas include probate matters, general civil litigation, domestic relations, criminal defense and real estate.   Recently he has handled diverse matters including:

  • Probate litigation including will contests (caveats); guardianship proceedings; drafting of wills, powers-of-attorney, Advanced Directive for Health Care, trusts; has been court-appointed as both executor and conservator in contested estates
  • General litigation including representation of both plaintiffs and defendants in contract disputes, construction litigation, personal injury, premises liability and land-line disputes
  • Domestic relations litigation including divorces, child custody, child support, legitimation and adoption
  • Residential real estate purchases, sales and financing
  • Criminal defense including both felony and misdemeanor offenses

Prior to becoming a partner in Whelchel & Carlton, LLP, Hamilton was in private practice both as a solo practitioner and as an associate with a small firm.  He began his career as a Superior Court law clerk and then became an Assistant District Attorney obtaining convictions in a variety of matters including murder, armed robbery, aggravated assault, sale of cocaine, DUI and domestic violence.

Hamilton is married to Beth Lee Garner and they have twin boys, William and Robert.  They are active members of Moultrie First United Methodist Church and other local organizations.


Mercer University, B.B.A (Management), 1996 Mercer University, Walter F. George School of Law, J.D., 2001


Hamilton was formerly a Captain in the Georgia Army National Guard/U.S. Army, having received his commission as an Armor officer through ROTC in 1996.  He graduated from the Armor Officer Basic Course, Judge Advocate Officer Basic Course and Airborne School.  His leadership positions included Armor Platoon Leader (M1A1 Abrams), Support Platoon Leader (logistics) and as a Company Executive Officer.  He then transferred to the Judge Advocate General’s Corp and  advised commanders, officers and soldiers on UCMJ, USERRA, SCRA, laws of war and general legal matters including preparation of wills, powers-of-attorney, and pre- and post-deployment assistance.

Memberships and Affiliations

State Bar of Georgia, Admitted 2001
All Courts of the State of Georgia
Court of Appeals of the State of Georgia
Supreme Court of the State of Georgia
United States District Court, Middle District of Georgia
Supreme Court of the United States

Volunteer Activities and Community Involvement

Moultrie Bar Association, President, 2011 – Present
Moultrie-Colquitt County Chamber of Commerce, Member of Board of Directors
Kiwanis Club of Moultrie, Committee Chairman and past member Board of Directors
Moultrie First United Methodist Church, past Chairman of Counsel of Stewards
YLD Leadership Academy (State Bar of Georgia), 2009 graduate
Leadership Colquitt County, 2009 graduate
Hero House – Children’s Advocacy Center of Colquitt County, past Board of Directors
Colquitt County Chapter Ducks Unlimited, past Area Chairman
Double Gobble Chapter NWTF, past Committee Member