Nov. 2022

A Message from...

Steve W. Ledbetter, Esq.

Reminder! If it is your spouse who has passed away) this change in circumstances may be a good time to meet with the Attorney to review your estate planning documents. Call our office to set up a consultation. We will review your documents and confirm that all is organized, understood, and a plan is in place for future needs.

Our thoughts are with you as you recover from Hurricane Ian. We understand that your immediate concerns must be for the safety of you and your family but we also want you to know that we care about you.

Please contact us if there is anything we can do to help.

What Happens After

A Loved One Has Passed Away

First and foremost should be to "circle the wagons" and ensure everyone in your family, including yourself, is getting the emotional support you need. There isn't anything from a legal perspective that is necessary in the immediate two to four weeks that we can't follow-up with later.

• What do I do about the decedent’s Social Security payments? 

Usually, the funeral home or cremation service will be able to answer these questions and notify the Social Security Administration for you. However, here is the link to the SSA website:

• How many death certificates should I order?

Typically, you should order one short & one long form death certificate. You may also need additional short form certificates for each financial account & additional long form certificates for life insurance proceeds.

• Should I pay the decedent’s debts?

No! Please do not pay any debts of the decedent that are not your joint debts until you speak with our office.

• What, if anything needs to be done about the decedent’s homestead property?

If the decedent was survived by a spouse, there are a few Affidavits that we will assist you in preparing and recording to clear the title to the property to make sure it is in the surviving spouse’s name. You will also want to provide a death certificate to the County Tax Appraiser’s Office in order to claim the widow’s/widower’s exemption on the real property taxes. If the decedent was not survived by a spouse, make sure the house is secure and contact our office. 

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Carrie Smith

Probate & Trust Paralegal

Ledbetter Law Group is delighted to welcome Carrie Smith. An experienced attorney, Carrie grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and graduated from the University of Colorado with a B.S. degree in Finance. She returned to Chicago and received her J.D from Loyola University Chicago School of Law.

Carrie’s legal career began in Chicago as a trial attorney for an insurance company. She then joined the United States Secret Service as a Special Agent Trainee and became certified as a Federal Criminal Investigator. Her legal career was put on hold after she married, moved to Vancouver, Canada, and chose to be a stay-at-home mom to raise their two girls. 

In January of 2020, Carrie moved to our area and began working in real estate law. Now at Ledbetter Law Group, we welcome this distinguished attorney to our Probate Department. 


The Summit 2022

Steve W. Ledbetter, Esq., Callie Cowan, Esq. and Lissa MacDonald, JD attended

The Annual Summit 2022 in Orlando. This two-day program presented by Atticus

draws more than 100 law firm owners from around the nation providing the business training and management skills necessary to maintain our law focus on what is

really important in life - our clients.


EB&T Ribbon Cutting

Our Ledbetter Law Group team members - Callie Cowan, Associate Attorney, Lissa MacDonald, Real Estate Paralegal and Valerie Cottrell, Director of Marketing celebrated with Englewood Bank & Trust this morning at their ribbon cutting for their new location is Venice! Congratulations!

Venice Area Board of Realtor Affiliate Appreciation Event

Callie Cowan, Associate Attorney and Lissa MacDonald, Real Estate Paralegal at the Venice Area Board of Realtors Affiliate Appreciation Event. Great time with Great people!


Veterans Day, a day to thank all who have sacrificed for our nation. To express our gratitude we hosted our 3rd Annual Veterans Day Event Friday, November 11th.

Thank you so much for all who came including VHS ROTC, our clients, friends and family. Thank you Darrell's Restaurant for the amazing BBQ and to Beckah Lee Photography.

We had an amazing time and can't wait for next year's celebration!


Thank you for trusting our Real Estate Team at Ledbetter Law Group.

Congratulations to BOTH the buyers and to the sellers.

We know it can feel like a lot of

moving pieces; therefore, to provide

the best customer service and help you feel comfortable with “What’s next?”, we at Ledbetter Law Group have created multiple written and video guides to explain and illustrate

The 5 Steps For Your Great Closing™.

Email Us to Learn More!

Did you know that we offer online scheduling?

We offer a complimentary 15 minute telephone call with either Steve Ledbetter, Esq. or Callie Cowan, Esq., to learn how we can best assist you.

Look for the "blue button" link at the bottom right of our webpage or call our office at 941.256.3965

Experience the ultimate satisfaction and peace of mind. Let the team at Ledbetter Law Group guide you and your loved ones in creating a plan that accomplishes your goals.

Please contact our office at 941.256.3965 to schedule a consultation.

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