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We cater our legal services to your style of communication, desired level of involvement, and budget. Our aim is to provide you high quality legal representation within a relationship that is respectful and productive.Please contact us for your free initial consultation today.
Serving the People of Western North Carolina
Clement Firm law offices are in the historical FlatIron Building in downtown Asheville, NC. Entrance is next to World Coffee Cafe on Battery Park Avenue.
Small Business Development, Corporate Law, Real Estate Law, Estate Planning, Wills, Trusts, Probate Administration, LGBTQ Services, Intellectual Property Law, Custom Services See our website for estate planning flat rate packages and more.
NC State Bar Association 28th Judicial District Bar Association North Carolina Advocates for Justice
Real Estate Litigation
Real Estate TransactionsWhen you buy a piece of real estate you receive “title” to that property. The term title refers both to legal ownership and the right to use the property. Unfortunately, certain types of mistakes, or “title defects” can leave the new owner in a situation in which another party also has a valid legal claim to the real estate they purchased. Because of the risks associated with title defects, title insurance has become a mandatory part of the process of acquiring funds from a lender for a residential real estate transaction.
ExtortionYou may also want to carefully review the copyright status of any images you are currently using to market your business. Currently, there is an epidemic of “copyright troll” companies that search the Internet for infringements so they can aggressively seek damages. Though it is important to protect creative rights, the business practices of copyright trolls sometimes go far beyond the bounds of protection, and have even been analogized with extortion. Unfortunately it is small business owners that tend to fall victim of “trolling”. Often small business owners do not have the resources to create or outsource their marketing and web development from industry professionals. If you receive a threatening letter concerning alleged copyright infringement, you should immediately contact an attorney in order to preserve your rights.
Criminal DefenseAfter graduation Eva joined the firm Thomas P. Peter II & Associates in Maine as a litigator. Her caseload included criminal defense for adults and juveniles, family law, mental health, business law, civil litigation, probate, and administrative law. She participated in the Maine Volunteers Lawyers Project on the Domestic Violence Pro Bono Panel.
ForeclosureUnlike other types of insurance, title insurance insures against defects that have happened in the past. Prior to closing, a title search is performed that identifies potential problems with title. Title insurance insures against those risks and also risks that would not come up during a title search. Despite best efforts, there are types of title defects that cannot be found by searching public records. For example, there can be mistakes in public records, improperly probated wills, improper foreclosure sales, fraudulent conveyances, or any number of a wide variety of risks that potentially effect title.
Tax LawThe real purpose of estate planning is so much broader than the estate tax issues. Even a simple will significantly reduces the time and expense of the probate process. In all cases, the probate process is significantly lengthened if no will is in place at time of death. If you do not have a will, your assets will be distributed in a manner determined by the State. As I have written about before, in some instances dying without a will can lead to loss of land—even land that has been in families for generations.
GuardianshipThe durable power of attorney document grants a designated person the power to handle your financial affairs. For example, your appointed power of attorney will be able to manage your bank account, liquidate assets, sign documents and perform other financial management tasks on your behalf. This power can be granted effective immediately upon signing the document or only upon the event of your mental incompetence or incapacity. In the State of North Carolina, in order for a durable power of attorney to be effective after the principal is mentally incompetent, the document must be filed with the office of the Register of Deeds. In the unfortunate case where there is not a power of attorney filed prior to an individual becoming mentally incompetent, then a guardian must be appointed. This is accomplished through the court system by guardianship proceedings. During guardianship proceedings the debts, assets, and mental competence of the principal are examined in the courtroom. Having a durable power of attorney saves your family the time, expense and emotional hardship of going through the court appointed guardianship process.
Trusts and Estates
Estate PlanningThe Clement Law Firm of Asheville, NC offers a comprehensive estate planning package with the most essential documents you need.
WillsWhat kind of medical care would you want if you were too ill to make your own medical decisions? Advanced directives also known as living wills are a type of legal document that defines your decisions about end-of-life medical care ahead of time. This relatively simple document can prevent strife and confusion within your family and with your medical care provider when the need for a difficult end of life decision becomes necessary. This document tells your family and your medical care providers whether you want any treatment in a wide range of specific circumstances, and if so, what type of treatment you would want to receive if you were dying or permanently unconscious. I strongly encourage everyone to do research and put serious thought into end-of-life issues.
TrustsOmnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993. It allows disabled or mentally ill people to keep assets without affecting government benefits. For the purposes of SSI and Medicaid eligibility, the assets in the trust are not counted. Often the assets for the trusts come from an inheritance. Although the trustee cannot disperse money directly to the disabled beneficiary, funds can go to a wide variety of purposes such as out-of-pocket medical expenses, educational materials, personal care attendants, or recreational activities. One feature of a special needs trust is that when the beneficiary dies and if the trust still contains assets, the state will need to be paid back up to the amount that Medicaid paid in medical expenses.
Power of AttorneyThe health care power of attorney functions similarly to the durable power of attorney but it pertains to health care decisions instead of financial ones. This document grants your chosen representative the power to make health care decisions on your behalf. The health care power of attorney document, particularly when combined with an advanced directive, will grant your chosen representative to express your preferred end of life choices, such as the decision to end life support or request a, “do not resuscitate” order with a hospital or nursing home. This document could take effect immediately or when you lack capacity. Lacking capacity usually means that either you can't understand the nature and consequences of the health care choices that are available to you or you are unable to communicate your own wishes.
Social Security DisabilityBy providing pro bono legal services to low-income citizens. A majority of my pro bono work with these organizations has involved Social Security disability or Medicaid issues. However I also provide services for cases involving probate law, landlord/tenant issues, and housing issues.
Business and Corporate Law
Business DisputesClement Law Firm in Asheville, NC assists clients with probate and estate planning, business law, and residential real estate transactions. Our aim is to provide all clients high quality, respectful legal representation.
Business TransactionsThis document allows for you to choose who can make decisions other than medical ones, such as financial decisions. This can be as expansive or narrow as you want. If can cover banking, real estate, or business transactions.
Limited Liability CompaniesThe new Act will apply to all existing LLCs regardless of whether they were formed before or after January 1, 2014. The new Act should have a minimal effect on a LLC that is regulated by a well-written operating agreement. All other LLCs should have their operating agreements reviewed by an attorney to make sure they are in compliance with the new Act. In addition, all limited liability companies should review their filings to make sure they are up to date with the Secretary of State.
Intellectual PropertyGetty Images recently announced they are now releasing up to 40 million images that can be used for “noncommercial” uses in blogs, social media websites and other online uses for free. This is a drastic shift in policy, as Getty Images previously charged for use of any image they hold the rights to. However, this change does not lessen the intellectual property issues that might arise for business owners that use any picture licensed by Getty Images.
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