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Monday, July 30, 2018

How Do You Make Sure Your Will is Valid?

Whether you are just married, have been married for decades, or if you’re single with no dependents, you need a will. A will is an important legal instrument which ensures your assets are distributed according to your intent after you die. Creating a will might sound like a hassle, and you might be tempted to put if off for a few years or type up a “will” on your own. Neither of these is a good decision, however, as accidents happen and you want to make sure your loved ones are cared for and your estate is distributed the way you want it to be.


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Friday, July 27, 2018

How Are Adopted and Foster Children, Children Born Out-of-Wedlock, and Posthumously-Conceived Children Treated in Wills?

No two families are the same. Whether you currently have no children but are planning to start a family, or whether you have multiple children from different relationships, your family is as unique as you are. All parents want to make sure their children are cared for when they die, and parents of children who are not born out of a marital relationship may have questions about how and whether their children will be treated under their will.


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Wednesday, July 25, 2018

How Do You Revoke Your Will?

You’ve met with attorneys, considered your options, and carefully drawn up and executed a will. Then, something unexpected happens. Maybe it’s a divorce or a death, or maybe you gain or lose significant assets. If your will isn’t accurate anymore, what are your options?


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Tuesday, July 24, 2018

What Should You Consider When Deciding Whether to Create a Trust?

Many people think trusts are only for the wealthy. This could not be further from the truth, as trusts can be very powerful tools that not only help you care for your loved ones after you pass, but also allow you to ensure your estate is managed exactly as you want. Trusts can also help you minimize your tax liability and...


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Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Common Estate Planning Mistakes to Avoid

Despite the fact that financial information is more accessible than ever before, there are still many misconceptions about estate planning. By working with an experienced estate planning attorney, you can avoid the following common estate planning mistakes.


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Monday, June 25, 2018

Avoiding Probate

Probate is the administration of an estate. It is the formal, court-monitored process that results in the distribution of the estate assets to the appropriate beneficiaries. Probate, while sometimes necessary, is a notoriously lengthy, complicated, and sometimes expensive process. Fortunately, through proper estate planning, you can spare your loved ones the trying experience as they watch your estate go through probate. You have the ability to design an estate plan that can mostly, if not completely, eliminate the need for your estate to go through probate.


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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Small Estate Affidavit

Illinois allows for use of a small estate affidavit, a useful tool for some of those dealing with smaller estates who are looking to avoid formal probate proceedings. A small estate affidavit does not need to be filed with a court. Use of the affidavit allows for the transfer of estate assets without the need of going before a judge or jumping through all of the time consuming hoops involved with formal probate proceedings.


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Friday, June 15, 2018

Incentive Trusts

One thing many people worry about is the best way to provide for their loved ones after they are gone. Sometimes, we want to leave assets or property to a family member, but worry about things like spending habits that may lead him or her to squander an inheritance. The desire to best serve our nearest and dearest lasts indefinitely. Fortunately, estate planning can help us fulfill this goal. One valuable tool in estate planning is the incentive trust.


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Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Putting Your Eggs in One Basket

Marriage is a wonderful thing. People are happy, they are in love, they are in a certain state of euphoria. Then something happens and the people who were once in love…can’t stand each other. People become bitter, vengeful, and completely unlike themselves. They try to work things out, but nothing helps.


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Thursday, May 24, 2018

Third Party Special Needs Trusts

Establishing a special needs trust can be an invaluable part of the estate planning process. A special needs trust is a specific type of trust used to provide supplemental support to a person with disabilities without jeopardizing the individual’s continued receipt of government benefits. You may have a loved one with special needs who you wish to provide for so that they always have a certain standard of living.


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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Dying Without a Will

While many people might have to create a will on their to-do list, they may not realize the consequences that come with passing away without having a valid will in place. When someone dies without creating a legally valid will, it is referred to as dying “intestate.” Without a will, all assets that pass through probate are subject to state intestacy law. These are the default laws of distributing the estate of a deceased individual, referred to as the “decedent,” and may not necessarily be in line with what the decedent would have wanted had had he or she memorialized his or her wishes in a will.


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