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Ansley Chapman Cella

Attorney
AA Contact Info

Kathy Barden
Phone: 919.821.6634
kbarden@smithlaw.com

Overview

Ansley Chapman Cella, a partner in the firm’s Trusts and Estates group, has assisted closely-held business owners and high net worth individuals with estate planning matters for over twenty years. Ansley received her LL.M in Estate Planning and advises on tax and non-tax aspects of lifetime and post-mortem wealth transfers, business succession, asset protection, and charitable planning.

Prior to joining Smith Anderson, Ansley practiced trusts and estates law at a Raleigh law firm.

  • North Carolina Bar Association (2001 to present)
    • Estate Planning, Probate, and Fiduciary Law Section
      • Section Council (2019-2022)
      • Membership Committee (2015-2018)
        • Chair (2016-2018)
        • Vice Chair (2015-2016)
      • Pro Bono Committee (2001-2006)
  • Wake County Estate Planning Council, Secretary (2013-2014)
  • White Memorial Presbyterian Church
    • Confirmation Mentor
    • Church School Council
    • Sunday School Teacher
  • Chatham Hall Alumnae Council
  • Best Lawyers®, Trusts and Estates (2018-2022), Tax Law (2022)
  • Business North Carolina’s Legal Elite, Tax and Estate Planning (2012, 2018, 2019, 2021)
  • North Carolina Super Lawyers
    • Estate Planning and Probate (2017)
    • Rising Stars (2009-2013)
  • North Carolina Lawyers Weekly “Best Lawyers in Raleigh,” Trusts and Estates (2017)
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Peer Rated for Highest Level of Professional Excellence

Experience

Experience

Prior to joining Smith Anderson, Ansley:

  • Drafted wills, living wills, revocable and irrevocable trusts, special needs trusts, financial and health care powers of attorney, and living wills.
  • Advised on revocable trust funding and non-probate beneficiary designations.
  • Implemented advanced estate planning techniques including generation-skipping dynasty trusts, life insurance trusts, grantor retained annuity trusts, qualified personal residence trusts, and charitable trusts.
  • Transferred assets to family holding companies to centralize management and preserve multi-generational wealth.
  • Assisted business owners and corporate executives with planning in advance of transfer or sale of ownership interests.
  • Implemented family charitable planning through use of private foundations, charitable remainder and lead trusts, and donor-advised funds.
  • Prepared federal gift tax returns to report lifetime use of federal gift and generation-transfer tax exemptions.
  • Assisted fiduciaries with post-mortem estate and trust administration, including probate and non-probate asset transfer, trust funding, and estate tax return preparation.
  • Resolved outdated irrevocable trust issues through termination, modification, or decanting.

News & Publications

Publications

  • Recent Developments
    07.01.2014
    The Will & The Way, Published by the Estate Planning & Fiduciary Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association
  • Recent Developments
    05.28.2014
    The Will & The Way, Published by the Estate Planning & Fiduciary Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association
  • Recent Developments
    04.03.2014
    The Will & The Way, Published by the Estate Planning & Fiduciary Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association
  • Recent Developments
    11.19.2013
    The Will & The Way, Published by the Estate Planning & Fiduciary Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association
  • Portability Bliss?
    03.07.2011
    The Will & The Way, Published by the Estate Planning & Fiduciary Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association
  • Beware of S-Corp Rules in Estate Planning
    Business North Carolina, June 1, 2006
  • Estate Planning Lessons for Second Marriages
    Business North Carolina, June 1, 2007

Speaking Engagements

Events

  • Presenter, “Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax," 2017 Estate Planning and Probate Law Survey Course, North Carolina Bar Association, Cary, N.C.
    09.28.2017
  • Presenter, “Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax," 2015 Estate Planning and Probate Law Survey Course, North Carolina Bar Association, Cary, N.C.
    09.25.2015
  • Co-Presenter, “Recent Developments,” Wake County Estate Planning Council Meeting, Raleigh, N.C.
    09.16.2014
  • Co-Presenter, “Recent Developments,” 35th Annual Estate Planning & Fiduciary Law Section Meeting, Kiawah Island, S.C.
    07.17.2014
  • Presenter, "Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax," 2013 Estate Planning and Probate Law Survey Course, North Carolina Bar Association, Cary, N.C.
    09.27.2013
  • Presenter, "Advanced Estate Planning Techniques in North Carolina," National Business Institute, Raleigh, N.C.

Bar & Court Admissions

  • North Carolina
  • South Carolina

Education

  • University of Miami School of Law, LL.M., Estate Planning, 2000
  • University of South Carolina School of Law, J.D., 1998 
    • Dean’s List
    • Phi Delta Phi
  • Clemson University, B.A., History (Minor in Commerce Communications), 1994 
    • Dean’s List 

Clerkships

  • Law Clerk to the Honorable Paula H. Thomas, Chief Administrative Judge of the Court of Common Pleas, 15th Judicial Circuit
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