Debbie McDermott is a member of Smith Anderson’s Trusts and Estates practice and advises clients on estate planning, estate administration and other trusts and estates matters.
As a North Carolina Board Certified Specialist in Estate Planning and Probate Law and a Certified Financial PlannerTM, Debbie has extensive experience advising high net worth individuals on matters including wealth transfer, asset protection and charitable planning. Prior to joining Smith Anderson, Debbie worked for a regional law firm where she advised clients on a range of estate planning and elder needs, especially ultra-high net worth individuals. Before attending law school, Debbie served as an associate director of gift planning at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she worked with ultra-high net worth donors to create strategic plans for planned gifts and other philanthropy. She also worked as a financial planner at Suntrust Bank where she advised both individual clients and small businesses on matters related to business succession, risk management and estate and tax planning.
Debbie enjoys the arts, attending live sports, entertainment, and arts events.
Areas of Focus
- Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch® in America, Trusts and Estates (2024)
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, J.D., with honors, 2014
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, B.A., 1998
Bar & Court Admissions
- North Carolina
- Certified Financial Planner
- NC Board Certified Specialist in Estate Planning and Probate Law
- Board of Trustees, Carolina Theatre of Durham, Inc. (2020-present)
- Durham/Orange Estate Planning Council
- Secretary (2019-present)
- Board Member (2018-present)
- Secretary, Vice President and President (2006-2011)
- TABLE Ministries, Inc.
- Board Chair (2016-2017)
- Treasurer (2007-2013)
- Board Member (2007-2017)