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Questions Answered by Catherine E Bruce
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: Need power of attorney and medical power of attorney

Hospital gave me forms for medical power of attorney and I have blank from online search for power of attorney. Can I complete these and have them notarized and they be legal. On fixedincome and can't afford lawyer at this time. Location shows as Eden when questions submitted. I live in... Read more »

Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Aug 19, 2015

You can certainly fill out your own forms for the Power of Attorney and Health Care Power of Attorney, as long as you fulfill NC's requirements for each of the documents. You need to have the POA notarized. For the medical document, you need to sign the HCPOA before two "qualified" witnesses (i.e.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: My uncle passed away in Washington DC how can I get a copy of his will and if he had a person as power of attorney what

Rights does he have if he has not been named the administrator

Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Aug 19, 2015

Once a will is probated, it becomes a matter of public record. Contact the Clerk's office in DC to find out whether a will has been submitted for probate yet, and to get a copy of it if so.

POAs are recorded in some instances, but it is possible that there was a valid POA that was not to be...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: If my mother & I are listed on a warranty deed and a mortage still. And she gives power of attorney to my brother.

What happens to estate and affairs in N.C.?

Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Aug 19, 2015

A Power of Attorney is only effective during the life of the grantor. So, the POA will have no effect on how your mother's estate is handled after she passes away. The POA may grant your brother authority to act on behalf of your mother in dealing with the property and mortgage while your mother is... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: In NC, can the administrator of an estate pay property taxes out of the estate account?

County property tax is due and heirs cannot pay the tax. Can it be paid out of the estate before distributions to heirs?

Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Aug 19, 2015

In North Carolina, the Administrator or Executor should only pay the expenses of maintaining real property (such as property taxes, insurance, etc) in two situations: (1) where the real property was willed directly to the estate in the decedent’s will, and (2) where the proceeds from the sale of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: Do you need trusts for real estate in North Carolina?

I heard that you do need to worry about putting real estate (personal home, rental properties) into trusts in NC, that it will still easily pass to heirs (children, not talking about spouse) without having to do trusts? Is this true / recommended if you are trying to avoid probate ?

Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Aug 19, 2015

Generally, in North Carolina, title to real property vests in your heirs or devisees as soon as the owner passes away. So, if you have a will naming your children as devisees of your real property, your children will be considered the owners of the property as soon as you pass away. If you die... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: My husband's will was created by estate JD and witnessed in KY. He died in NC, all assets/no debts to me. We one child

Do we need to file probate?

Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Aug 11, 2015

"Non-probate assets" are those which are owned jointly and/or which have a beneficiary designation. If all of your husband's assets were non-probate assets, you do not need to file for probate. Real property is non-probate if it is owned as "tenants by the entireties" or "joint tenants with rights... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: My brother died intestate. His 457b plan through his employer had a named beneficiary, but when the plan administrator

was changed to Fidelity, the beneficiary information didn't transfer, Could we sue to employer or Fidelity to make them honor his beneficiary wishes? At a 39.6% federal estate tax rate, this is a significant amount of money. Would we have a case?

Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Aug 11, 2015

Generally, retirement benefits are included in a person's "gross estate" for estate tax valuation. Whether or not you have a beneficiary on the policy makes no difference: it's included either way. So, having a beneficiary on the plan wouldn't actually reduce the value of your brother's gross... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: My spouse passed away in North Carolina without a will, is the home outside of the estate

Will my mom and children get house at time of death or will it be unsettled till credit card debt is paid

Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Aug 11, 2015

The answer to your question depends on how the house is titled. If someone owned the house jointly with your spouse as "tenants by the entireties" or "joint tenants with rights of survivorship," that person now owns the property. If the property was titled in one of these two forms, it passes... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: Boyfriend dies-no will. Our baby is heir. Does movable property including car or money from sale of car go to me?

The father of my boyfriend became admin of my deceased boyfriend's estate. He had no will and courts determined his sole heir was our only child. The admin of the estate sold both cars amounting to a $30k profit. Don't I have the right to that money since moveable property goes to the mother of... Read more »

Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Aug 11, 2015

North Carolina's Intestate Succession statute does not make a distinction between "moveable" or "immoveable" property, or give property directly to the mother of an heir. From your description, it sounds like all of the proceeds from your boyfriend's estate are considered the property of your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: My mom had a will but changed it and now she wants to go back to the original one what does she need to do?
Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Jul 29, 2015

Your mother's old will was revoked when she executed her second, current will. However, revoking/destroying her current will would NOT revive her previous will.

Your mother will need to execute a third will that contains the same provisions as her first will, if she wants to go back to the...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for North Carolina on
Q: My dad owned a house in NC when he died with a will. Who owns the house now, the estate or the heirs?

My dad lived in Greensboro, retired to Hilton Head. He had a SC will, with I filed with Beaufort County Probate Court. I filed an Ancillary Estate with the Alamance County Probate Court, specifically for the sale of the house. As Executor, I signed listing agreement and the sales contract. Now at... Read more »

Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Jul 29, 2015

Unless the will directly conveys real property to the estate or Executor, title to real property vests in the devisees at the death of the owner. That is why the closing attorney wants the signatures of all the devisees and their spouses on the deed. Typically, proceeds from the sale of the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for North Carolina on
Q: My mother died in NC, no will and she had 5 properties in her name. I do not want them and I am heir what do I do?
Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Jul 29, 2015

I assume that you mean that you want to sell the properties and collect the proceeds. As long as (1) the properties were not owned jointly by your mother and another person (i.e. not as "joint tenants with right of survivorship" or "tenants by the entireties") and (2) you are entitled to receive... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Tax Law for North Carolina on
Q: My brother died and as part of his estate i received $120,00.00 do i have to pay inherant taxes in NC.
Catherine E Bruce
Catherine E Bruce answered on Jul 29, 2015

Your brother's estate will not owe any NC Inheritance Taxes if your brother passed away during or after 2013. North Carolina repealed its estate/inheritance tax, effective January 1, 2013.

You probably will not have to pay federal estate tax either. Currently, the federal estate tax...
Read more »

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