Ethel Andersen has focused her law practice on estate planning and probate since she and her husband, Tom, founded the firm in 1988. Many of her estate planning clients have complex estates and complex family issues, and she enjoys working with them to come up with plans that are tax efficient and protective and fair to family members with different and sometimes competing interests. Frequently her clients are grappling with the recent death or disability of a close family member or with the recent evidence of a close family member’s dysfunction. Ethel clearly explains options to her clients and guides them in selecting the most appropriate strategy for the situation. Probate can seem daunting when someone has lost a family member, and Ethel helps simplify the probate process and helps clients settle estates as expeditiously as possible.
Ethel has spoken frequently at estate planning seminars sponsored by the fiduciary law section of the Georgia Bar Association. She holds an “AV preeminent” rating by the Martindale-Hubble National Legal Directory, which is the highest designation given for both lawyer competence and integrity.
After receiving her undergraduate degree from Duke University, Ethel taught social studies in public school for one year in her hometown, Perry, Georgia. She then attended law school at the University of Georgia and received her Juris Doctor from Emory University School of Law. She began her career as a lawyer at Troutman Sanders. Later she served as an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Georgia and also as an Administrative Law Judge. Her background in litigation, corporate law and real estate law have been helpful in her estate planning and probate practice.
Ethel is very involved in the Gwinnett community and was the recipient of the Anna Shackelford Legacy Award given by United Way for her outstanding community service. She and Tom have two grown sons, both of whom live in Atlanta.
Honors and Awards
- Achieved “AV Preeminent” Rating by the Martindale-Hubbell for legal ability and ethical standards
- Anna Shackleford Legacy Award – 2012 Recipient – Awarded by the Gwinnett Chapter of the Metro Atlanta United Way for outstanding community service
- Emory University School of Law
- Juris Doctor
- University of Georgia School of Law
- Attended first year
- Selected for membership on Georgia Law Review and awarded faculty scholarship
- Duke University
- Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
- Class Honors Junior and Senior Years
- U.S. Court of Appeals 11th Circuit
- U.S. District Court Middle District of Georgia
- U.S. District Court Northern District of Georgia
- U.S. District Court Southern District of Georgia
- U.S. Supreme Court
Professional Associations and Memberships
- State Bar of Georgia, Fiduciary Law Section
- Atlanta Bar Association, Estate Planning and Probate Section
- Community Foundation of Northeast Georgia – Past Board President, Board Member
- Gwinnett Medical Center Foundation – Board Member
- Gwinnett Clean and Beautiful – Executive Committee Member
- Hudgens Center for the Arts – Trustee
- Leadership Gwinnett – Graduate and Executive Committee Member for Alumni Council
- Gwinnett Coalition of Health and Human Services – Board Member
- Gwinnett/North Fulton Junior League – Founding Board Member
- Gwinnett Council for the Arts – Founding Board Member & Past President
- Duluth First United Methodist Church, Member