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About Letha Sgritta McDowell

Letha Sgritta McDowell is a shareholder of Hook Law Center, P.C. practicing in the areas of estate planning, elder law, special needs planning, estate and trust administration, asset protection planning, long-term care planning, personal injury settlement consulting, guardianships & conservatorships and tax law. Ms. McDowell is a 2001 graduate of Purdue University and a 2004 graduate of the University of Maine’s School of Law.

In addition to being licensed in the state of Virginia, Ms. McDowell is licensed in the state of North Carolina, allowing her to work with the firms North Carolina residents, as she is one herself. Ms. McDowell was named as a Fellow of the prestigious American College of Trusts and Estates Council (“ACTEC”) in 2020 and she is certified by the National Elder Law Foundation and Board Certified as a specialist in Elder Law by the North Carolina State Bar Board of Legal Specialization. Furthermore, McDowell is accredited to prepare and prosecute claims with the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Ms. McDowell is the 2020-2021 President Elect for the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (“NAELA”), and will be the NAELA President for the 2021-2022 year. In addition, she currently serves on NAELA’s Finance Committee and Federal Public Policy Committee and is a board member for the North Carolina State NAELA chapter. In the past she has served as Chair of NAELA’s Programs and Publications Committee assisting in the development of NAELA’s online basics program, and served as Chair of NAELA’s 2016 Annual Conference in Denver, Colorado. In addition, she is the former Chair of the North Carolina State Bar’s Elder Law Specialization Committee and is the former Editor-in-Chief of “Gray Matters”, the newsletter for the Elder Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association.

Ms. McDowell has taught numerous continuing education programs on elder law and special needs planning around the nation. She has worked on revisions to legislation which affect people with disabilities in North Carolina and serves as a pro-bono advisor to people with disabilities in North Carolina. Ms. McDowell is also a current subject matter expert for InterActive Legal Estate and Elder Law Planning software and serves as a strategic advisor for the company. She has worked with an IBM Watson partner to develop plain English explanations of complex legal concepts available for the public. She has been named Super Lawyer Rising Star for 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018, 2019 and named Super Lawyer for 2020 and 2021.

Along with her experience practicing as an attorney, she has dedicated much of her time writing for national publications including, but not limited to: Wolters Kluwer, Wealthmanagement.com, the NAELA Journal, Trust & Estates Magazine and many more. When she is not meeting with clients, presenting or writing for national and local professionals, she can be found at a North Carolina YMCA, in the front of the room, teaching a MOSSA group power class.

Education

University of Maine’s School of Law
Juris Doctor, 2004
Purdue University
B.A. 2001

Memberships

  • Member of the Board of Directors for the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys
  • Co-Chair of NAELA’s Programs & Publications Committee
  • Serves on NAELA’s public policy and finance committees
  • Vice-Chair of the Elder Law Specialization Committee for the North Carolina State Bar,

Admitted

  • North Carolina State Bar
  • Virginia State Bar

Certifications

  • Elder Law Attorney certified by the National Elder Law Foundation
  • Board Certified as a specialist in Elder Law by the North Carolina State Bar Board of Legal Specialization
  • Accredited to prepare and prosecute claims with the Department of Veterans Affairs

Honors and Awards

Rated AV preeminent 5.0/5.0 by Martindale-Hubbell

She has been named a Super Lawyer Rising Star for 2014 – 2016, 2018 – 2019.