Estate, Trust & Probate Blog

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Common Estate Planning And Probate Issues And How To Avoid Them

October 19, 2023

Estate planning and the probate process can often seem like a straightforward affair, but with the complexity of different types of estates, we see a myriad of issues that frequently arise.  Disputes over wills, trust complications, and other matters can make an already challenging time even more difficult for grieving families. Here, we want to outline some of the common issues we’ve seen over the years and offer proactive measures to avoid them. 1. Ambiguous or Outdated Wills Issue: One of the most common issues in estate disputes arises from wills that are either ambiguously worded or outdated. For instance,…

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Understanding Different Types of Trusts: A Guide for North Carolinians

September 13, 2023

Estate planning can be a complex endeavor, but it is an essential step in ensuring that your assets and loved ones are taken care of after you’re gone. One of the key tools in estate planning is the “trust,” a legal entity that holds property or assets for the benefit of specific persons or entities.  Trusts can be used for a variety of purposes, such as minimizing estate taxes, protecting assets, and facilitating the smooth transition of wealth. For example, if your local library or another institution is close to your heart and you want to make sure to leave…

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Understanding North Carolina’s Advance Healthcare Directives

August 9, 2023

If you want to ensure your wishes are followed in case you become incapacitated, there are specific legal documents you should consider having in North Carolina. These documents allow you to specify your preferences for medical treatment and to appoint someone to make decisions on your behalf.  To craft these documents properly, it’s important to understand the purpose of each one and to have a Wilmington estate planning attorney on your side to help ensure they are created and executed properly. Health Care Power of Attorney A Health Care Power of Attorney (HCPOA) is a legal document that allows you…

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The North Carolina Probate Process And How To Navigate It

July 12, 2023

If you are going through the probate process in North Carolina, you may be experiencing a wide range of emotions as you begin. The death of a loved one is always challenging, and being thrust into the unfamiliar territory of probate can be overwhelming.  You may feel uncertain or even anxious about managing the legal and financial aspects of your loved one’s estate. You might be worrying about making a mistake or about conflicts among family members. These feelings are completely normal – probate can be a complex process, and it’s understandable to feel uneasy, especially given the circumstances. Understanding…

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The Importance Of Creating A Will Or Trust In North Carolina

June 13, 2023

The decision to create a will or trust is a significant decision about the legacy you wish to leave behind and the protection of your loved ones’ financial future.  In North Carolina, as with other states, establishing a well-crafted will or trust offers numerous advantages. These critical legal documents can ensure your assets are distributed according to your preferences, protect your estate from substantial probate fees, expedite the asset distribution process, and provide a measure of control over your wealth after your passing.  By being aware of the unique benefits that both types of legal arrangements offer, you can determine…

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What are the Duties of a Trustee? (how to choose one)

May 16, 2023

Any adult aged 18 and older should consider creating a comprehensive estate plan. It does not matter how much wealth you have or if you have a family, although having children and a spouse definitely does merit an even greater need to establish an estate plan if one has not been made. Estate planning is so significant because most people want to know that when they pass on, what they have amassed in their life will go directly to the beneficiaries they intend their wealth and assets to.  Not all estate plans are the same, and each individual has their…

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Using Estate Planning To Support Charitable Causes

April 12, 2023

An important part of estate planning for many people is making sure that their money will continue to make a difference after their death. There are several options in North Carolina to put your estate’s resources to work for charities or other organizations that mean a lot to you. It’s important to note that the specific benefits of charitable giving can depend on your individual circumstances, such as your tax situation and the charities or organizations you choose to support. The Benefits Of Charitable Estate Planning Charitable giving allows you to support causes and organizations that are important to you…

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Guarantees When You Do Not Have a Power of Attorney or Advance Directive

March 14, 2023

Let’s face it: nobody wants to think about a situation where they are unable to make decisions for themselves and need someone to make decisions for them. Incapacity due to illness, injury, or other unpredictable situations can happen to any of us, however. When a devastating event occurs, it is crucial to have steps in place that allow our family and friends to step in and do what is right for us.  In North Carolina, powers of attorney and health care powers of attorney exist to help people through life’s most challenging situations. Estate planning attorneys such as David E.…

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Duties of Your Executor/Personal Representative in North Carolina

February 16, 2023

When someone passes away, their assets and property must be distributed according to their wishes as outlined in their will or according to North Carolina intestate laws if the person dies without a will.  In this article, our North Carolina estate planning attorney at David Anderson, PLLC, will discuss the duties of an NC executor or personal representative in sharing assets and also touch on relevant statutes that you need to know. What is an Executor/Personal Representative? An executor is a person appointed in a will to manage the distribution of a deceased person’s assets and property. An administrator is…

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Probate Avoidance and Assets That Do Not Go Through Probate in North Carolina

January 11, 2023

In North Carolina, probate is the legal process of administering the estate of a deceased person. This involves identifying and inventorying the deceased person’s assets, paying their outstanding debts and taxes, and distributing the remaining assets to their beneficiaries. The probate process is typically overseen by a court and can involve various legal procedures, depending on the specific circumstances of the estate.  Since probate can be a long, drawn-out process, many people prefer to try to understand North Carolina laws in order to plan ahead. In this article, we will provide an overview of the different kinds of assets that…

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