Posted on September 10, 2014 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Business Succession Options in North Carolina

Business succession plans address the future growth or disposition of the business upon a planned succession, or the death or incapacitation of the owner. Transitioning a business under these circumstances requires careful review and assessment. Poor business succession planning could translate to business failure or reduced longevity. What options do owners have? Merger. A plan […]

Posted on September 8, 2014 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Protect Parents’ Assets

As parents age, the risk of health problems grows. The Sandwich Generation—those caring for both their children and their parents, may experience the stresses and expenses of elder care, and then more issues later with probate of a deceased parent’s estate if no advance plans are made. One of the assets that can cause problems […]

Posted on September 5, 2014 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Asset Protection and Marriage

In the process of legally dissolving a marriage, the fate of assets may not match a spouse’s intentions. What should couples know about spousal claims and providing for children? Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements The terms of prenuptial and postnuptial agreements will limit adverse court judgments. If neither agreement exists, North Carolina’s equitable distribution laws apply. […]

Posted on September 2, 2014 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

3 Problems With Life Estate Title of Real Property

life estate problems

Real estate laws in North Carolina allow property owners to create and convey remainder interests in real property, while retaining lifetime rights to the property (a life estate). This is one way to transfer parents’ real property to children while allowing the parents the right to remain in and use the home. Life Estate Deeds […]

Posted on August 25, 2014 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Asset Protection in Second Marriages

north carolina prenuptial agreements

What asset protection strategies should an individual consider after divorce if they play to re-marry? Whether a marriage is a first or fifth, some planning tools always offer a degree of protection. Every couple’s goals, life stage, and assets are unique. A review with an asset protection lawyer prior to marriage helps address risks and […]

Posted on August 22, 2014 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Estate Plan Update: New Life Insurance Option

Life insurance can be a great estate planning tool. Payments generally do not go through probate, loved ones may not need to struggle financially after one’s death, and proceeds can be protected from creditors. A new option called a reversionary annuity may prompt individuals to update their estate plans. Life Insurance and Annuity Proceeds Reversionary […]

Posted on August 19, 2014 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Increasing Trust Income Distributions

power to adjust

Many trusts provide for lifetime income, but no principal, to the first generation of beneficiaries. In these days of low interest rates, income payments have suffered. However, income distributions from trusts do not have to be permanently affected by low interest rates. Although the type and governing law of a trust may impose restrictions on […]

Posted on August 8, 2014 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

North Carolina Durable Powers of Attorney

durable power of attorney

A Durable Power of Attorney (“DPOA”) is an essential estate planning tool for most of our clients, allowing them to name an individual to handle their financial affairs in the event of incapacity. Typically, we draft DPOA’s so that the agent named in the document has authority to act on behalf of the principal immediately […]

Posted on July 23, 2014 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

When Beneficiary Designations are Void

As a general rule, beneficiary designations supersede instructions for transferring assets that may appear in a Will. This is one of the reasons why regular reviews of one’s estate plan are critical. A Last Will and Testament may be updated to reflect the testator’s wishes, but assets like life insurance and retirement accounts are controlled […]

Posted on July 22, 2014 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Consequences of No Digital Asset Protection

  Digital asset protection is more than leaving behind one’s passwords. In an increasingly paperless world, failing to create instructions for accessing digital accounts could create problems for surviving family members. Email and online bank accounts are just two digitally accessible types of assets with uniquely different rules governing user access. Email services providers have […]

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