Douglas C. Smith

Phone: (808) 531-8031
Fax: (808) 533-2242


  • Conservatorships & Guardianships
  • Taxation
  • Wills, Trusts & Estates


  • University of Hawaii, William S. Richardson School of Law (J.D. 1990)
  • University of California at Santa Barbara, Philosophy and Economics (B.A. 1983)

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Doug’s practice emphasizes taxation, estate planning and business planning. He assists individuals, families and businesses with their legal needs.

Doug was named the Best Lawyers® 2024 Litigation-Trusts & Estates “Lawyer of the Year” in Honolulu. A designation given to a single attorney in each practice group by metropolitan area. Receiving this designation reflects the high level of respect a lawyer has earned among their peers for their abilities, their professionalism, and their integrity. He was also named Best Lawyers® 2021 Lawyer of the Year Trusts & Estates, the Best Lawyers® 2015 Lawyer of the Year Litigation-Trusts & Estates, and the Best Lawyers® 2013 Lawyer of the Year Trusts & Estates.

Doug once again was selected by his peers for inclusion in the 2024 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America® for his work in Corporate Law, Litigation-Trusts & Estates, Tax Law, and Trusts & Estates. Doug has also been selected by Super Lawyers for 10 years.

Estate Planning:

  • Preparation of Estate Plans – Prepares and revises estate plans, including Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney and Advance Health Care Directives.
  • Estate Administration – Assists with the administration of estates, including probate and non-probate administrations.
  • Tax Planning – Assists with planning for and minimizing estate and gift taxes.
  • Charitable Giving – Assists with planning for charitable gifts, and creation of appropriate legal documents, such as charitable remainder trusts and charitable gift annuities.
  • Dispute Resolution – Represents family members in disputes involving wills, trusts or estates, including alternative dispute resolution (mediation or other settlement or arbitration) and litigation, if necessary.
  • Guardianship – Represents family members in guardianship proceedings, including seeking or disputing appointment of a guardian and assisting with administration issues.

Business Planning:

  • Formation, Administration and Termination of Businesses – Assists individuals in forming, administering and terminating limited liability companies, corporations and partnerships.
  • Tax Planning – Assists businesses with planning to minimize taxes and to determine the tax effects of activities undertaken.
  • Reorganization – Assists with the reorganization of businesses, both taxable and tax-free.
  • Contracts – Assists businesses with creating or reviewing leases and other contracts affecting the business.
  • Dispute Resolution – Represents businesses and business owners in disputes, including alternative dispute resolution (mediation or other settlement or arbitration) and litigation, if necessary.

Related Matters:

  • Real Estate – Assists individuals, trusts and business with planning, contracts and disputes related to the purchase or leasing of real property.
  • Conveyancing – Assists with conveying real property.
  • 1031 Exchanges – Assists with planning and document preparation for 1031 exchanges.
  • Premarital Agreements – Prepares and reviews Premarital Agreements.

Professional and Community Affiliations

  • American Bar Association (Member of Taxation Section, Business Section and Real Property, Probate and Trust Section)
  • American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (Fellow)
  • Catholic Charities (Committee – Public Policy)
  • Goodwill Industries of Hawaii (Director)
  • Hawaii Estate Planning Council (Member)
  • Hawaii State Bar Association (Member and past Chair of Taxation Section, Business Section and Probate and Estate Planning Section
  • Ohu Ohu Koolau (Chair)

Publications (Partial Listing)

  • Chapter on Wills, Encyclopedia of Estate Planning, Hawaii State Bar Association (1999, Rev. 2007)
  • Estate Planning Forms Manual (contributor), Hawaii State Bar Association (2000)
  • Financial and Estate Planning Forms Manual, Hawaii Institute for Continuing Legal Education (1995)
  • Hawaii Conservatorship and Guardianship Forms Manual, co-author, Hawaii State Bar Association (2005)
  • Kapiolani Park Preservation Society v. City and County of Honolulu: The Lease of Public Park Land as a Breach of a Charitable Trust, University of Hawaii Law Review, Vol 11 (Fall 1989)
  • A Working Primer on the Hawaii Limited Liability Company Act (with Charles W. Key)