Doug’s Notes




Douglas J Carter, Attorney

100 West Unaka Avenue Johnson City, TN 37604 Phone: (423) 926-9193


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Advice from Doug

  1. Don’t let inaction cause family descent. In one instance, Mom promised her mantle clock to two sisters. When one took the clock, the other never spoke to her again. One fix is to put name labels on “precious items” with marking tape. A more certain solution is a simple Last Will and Testament. Families with young children need to consider protecting the kids with a Testamentary Trust.


  1. Accidents, strokes and other unforeseen troubles can rob you of your ability to decide matters of importance. You can speak now to name your proxy with a Power of Attorney, Health Care Directive and Health Care Designee. Costs are minimal and you make the decision at a fraction of the cost for a Court-appointed Conservator.


  1. This pre-holiday season is a good time to look after things that matter and rid yourself of things that don’t. Give them to charity. Most non-profits will give you receipts that may save on taxes, and you get rid of clutter.



  1. Plan ahead.  Work out your  schedule NOW.  Follow the Parenting Plan.
  2. Do NOT speak badly about your Ex.  Kids want to have fun, NOT hear how bad the “other” Parent is.
  3. Give the children “reasons” it will be fun to go with you….i.e. Santa left some things at your house for them.
  4. Be ready to Compromise.  You both want time with children.  If you are flexible your Ex may reciprocate.
  5. Don’t make gifts a competition!  Exorbitant gifts may backfire and cause emotional harm.


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