Estate Planning

Established North Carolina Estate Planning Attorneys Help You Prepare for the Future

Trusted firm advises clients in the Durham area on wills, trusts and conservatorships

No one knows what tomorrow may bring, but there are some inevitabilities for which you can prepare. You’ve worked too hard to risk your personal security or the legacy you leave, so it is wise to establish an estate plan you can count on no matter what comes your way. Law Office of Cheri C. Patrick helps clients throughout North Carolina guard against the unpredictable and leave instructions they feel confident about. Whether your estate is substantial or modest, we can help you design an estate plan that fits your unique circumstances and addresses your concerns.

Skilled lawyers provide counsel for thorough estate plans

Establishing a well-thought-out estate plan allows you to provide protection for your property, finances and medical care. We may ask you to consider: Do you want to maximize giving to your heirs? Preserve a vacation home? Provide for a child with special needs? Appoint a decision-maker in case you become incapacitated? To address these concerns and others, you can rely on us to help with a comprehensive estate plan. We may provide legal assistance with the following:

  • Will drafting, execution and review
  • Living trusts
  • Advance healthcare directives (living wills)
  • Powers of attorney
  • Estate and gift tax issues
  • Guardianships and conservatorships
  • Choosing the appropriate executor

Each person has different concerns and goals for the future. We work closely with you to determine your priorities and create precise instruments to carry out your intentions.

Thoughtful attorneys handle wills, guardianships and powers of attorney

Estate plans can include instructions not only for distributing your property after you’ve passed but also for handling decisions in the event you can no longer make them for yourself. Though it may be difficult to think about your mortality, clear and thorough plans can remove the fear of uncertainty. We can help with:

  • Wills — Your last will and testament provides the opportunity to distribute property, establish care for children and otherwise express your final wishes. A will is the primary means by which you can leave property to a person or entity other than a blood relative.
  • Trusts — Trusts are flexible instruments that allow you to put conditions on gifts and provide an allowance for a beneficiary rather than a lump sum. When you set up a living trust, for example, you can enjoy your property during your lifetime and transfer wealth seamlessly at your passing, helping your loved ones avoid probate.
  • Advance directives — Advance directives allow you to clearly articulate your preferences for medical treatment and lifesaving interventions. They can set forth instructions on various matters, including who should serve as your healthcare proxy (power of attorney) if you are incapacitated. Advance directives can also include DNR orders.
  • Guardianships — If you have minor children, it’s important to plan for their care in the event that you and their other parent pass away. While you can name a guardian in your will, the court will need to appoint them to serve in that capacity. Choosing a reliable, capable and trustworthy guardian can help ensure your children grow up feeling cared for and loved.

Knowing that you have planned for the long-term well-being and financial security of your loved ones can be comforting. Our lawyers at Law Office of Cheri C. Patrick thoroughly analyze your estate and strategize the best means of transferring your assets, minimizing taxes, establishing guardianship and supporting philanthropic causes.

Contact a trusted North Carolina estate planning law firm

For comprehensive estate planning services in North Carolina, call Law Office of Cheri C. Patrick at 919-794-7125 or contact us online to schedule a consultation at our Durham office.