Will & Estate Plan Attorney in Cary
Develop a proper estate plan and avoid severe financial and legal consequences.
A proper estate plan takes into account many different factors, including your assets, liabilities, tax issues, business dispositions, health, and perhaps most importantly, the needs of your loved ones.
It’s easy to see how quickly the legal landscape of your will, trusts, or estate can complicate — and it only takes one small mistake to have severe financial and legal consequences.
For 20 Years, Wills & Estate Attorney Hank Doyle Has Assisted Clients With:
A common misconception is that wills and estate planning are things that only the wealthy need to worry about. The reality is that everyone needs to have a will and estate plan in place to provide for the future of family and loved ones. If somebody dies without a will, then an application to the Clerk of Superior Court for Letters of Administration is required. To avoid this difficult process, be prepared with a will.
This is not an area to cut corners or take chances. We highly recommend hiring a seasoned lawyer to guide you through the process.
FAQs for Wills and Estate Plans
Our lawyers are answering the most commonly asked question about creating wills and estates.
What is the difference between a will and an estate?
A will is a single legal document that outlines how your assets will be distributed after you pass away. An estate plan typically contains a will among various other legal documents. The purpose of an estate plan is to dedicate professional advisors who will oversee the distribution of your assets according to your wishes. These legal professionals include lawyers, financial planners, accountants, bankers, and life insurance advisors who will represent you after your death and use legal documents to ensure your assets are divided in the way you specified.
What happens if you die without a will in North Carolina?
If there is no valid will, North Carolina law states that your assets will be divided according to intestate succession laws. Intestate succession law involves the Office of the Clerk of Superior Court who acts as the probate judge. The probate judge appoints an estate administrator who must first pay the deceased party’s expenses, taxes, and debt before distributing the remaining assets as directed by NC law.
How do I execute or write a will?
Wills must be developed and signed in the presence of a witness. A will is signed by both the creator of the will and the witness which validates the will when the deceased party passes away. It is important to execute a will properly in the first place to avoid the costly correction and legal difficulty of any errors. To this end, it is highly recommended to have a will and estate attorney oversee the execution of a will.
What is deemed a will in North Carolina?
A will allows the testator, or the writer of the will, the opportunity to ensure that their assets are divided according to their wishes. In your will, you may designate who inherits your property, and you may divide your assets in any way you see fit.
What is classified as an asset in a will?
An asset includes both tangible and intangible items that are of value. While assets encompass a long list of items, a few examples are your money, real estate, stocks and bonds, a 401(k) plan, an IRA, any business you own, family heirlooms, automobiles, jewelry, and more. It is important to note that if your real estate is a debt, such as a mortgage, the person you designate to inherit your real estate will be responsible for paying the debt as well.