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Illinois Civil Litigation Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: I have a question about estate and executor doing things he shouldn’t.

Our dad passed recently, the brother who is the executor has taken assets without the other siblings consent and sold them or is keeping them and not returning them. He is not following what is supposed to be done. We need to know what we should do, tried talking to him but he ignores us and is... Read more »

Steven J. Fromm
Steven J. Fromm answered on Nov 17, 2020

You need to immediately retain an estate litigation attorney to bring an action for his immediate removal for breach of his fiduciary duty as executor and for him to make a complete accounting. A surcharge action needs to brought against him for losses that the estate has incurred by him stealing... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Civil Litigation and Collections for Illinois on
Q: I have a judgement in wisconsin that's around 10 years old I just got an letter that they want to garnish my wages

They have never before this point tried to collect on it they have even sent me letters over the years trying to get me to come get another car thru them I dont have the money to pay them me and my husband dont make that much and we have three kids

Robert Shipley
Robert Shipley answered on Nov 5, 2020

State statutes have provisions by which judgments can be revived. You do not identify if the action is pending in Wisconsin or Illinois. Regardless, I would strongly recommend that you have a consultation with an attorney whose practice is concentrated in consumer law, to review whether the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: Executor of estate is possibly going against what is written in the will.

My father recently passed away. One of the siblings is the executor, but my other sister and I feel that the other sister is going against what the will says. She’s not letting us in the house, (we fear she’s already taken things that were meant for everyone to have a fair chance to pick out... Read more »

Bryan R. Bagdady
Bryan R. Bagdady answered on Nov 3, 2020

The executor is lawfully charged with the obligation and the right to marshall the estate assets. Part of the obligation of marshalling includes protecting assets. The executor would be within her rights to secure the house. Having said that, the executor is also obligated to file an inventory... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Civil Litigation, Libel & Slander, Personal Injury and Criminal Law for Illinois on
Q: Where can you find an attorney personally invested for a demand to ensure justice? practicing all areas of law
William Wolf
William Wolf answered on Oct 19, 2020

I can only speak for myself as a criminal defense lawyer. I guess the best answer is to ask the lawyer you're thinking about hiring why they became a lawyer. I would also ask the lawyer what professional associations they belong to and why.

I find that many of the best criminal...
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1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation for Illinois on
Q: My ex-husband was ordered twice to pay me 17,500 in attorneys fees. He appealed, and lost. How can I collect it?

My attorney doesn't want to hire a collection agency to get it. Can we do a wage garnishment?

Robert Shipley
Robert Shipley answered on Oct 15, 2020

If you have a final judgment, then you have the options to: 1) garnish wages from the employer 2) garnish funds from a known bank account 3) file and serve a Citation to Discover Assets which will require a further court appearance(s) and testimony would be taken regarding income and assets 4)... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation for Illinois on
Q: I hired a general contractor to do a small home remodeling job. They did a terrible job and wanted more money to finish.

I fired them and hired someone else to fix everything and finish the job. I am paying almost the same amount to fix the problems and finish. I called and asked for a reasonable refund but now no one is returning my calls. What are my options for getting some or all of my money back from the... Read more »

Robert Shipley
Robert Shipley answered on Sep 24, 2020

Your description suggests that the amount you paid the subsequent contractor to correct the defective workmanship was an amount equal to or greater than what was paid to the original contractor. In such instance, you can sue the original contractor for the dollar value of what was paid to the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation for Illinois on
Q: I filed a name change petition. However I want to dismiss it and refine it. How can I withdraw/vacate my filing?
Bryan R. Bagdady
Bryan R. Bagdady answered on Sep 24, 2020

You don't want to dismiss your petition. Rather, you should file a motion for leave to file an amended petition. Once the motion for amendment is granted, you can refine your petition in any way you deem appropriate. Good Luck. Bryan.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Insurance Defense and Legal Malpractice for Illinois on
Q: Does a lawyer have any recourse against the filer of a false ARDC complaint? Or does Rule 775 grant him TOTAL immunity?

Ill. Sup. Ct. R. 775 “IMMUNITY” seems to offer total protection to anyone who files an ARDC complaint against a lawyer, even if the grievance is entirely untrue and filed simply to harass the lawyer. The ARDC thoroughly investigates every claim, and it seems unfair to force lawyers to spend the... Read more »

Robert Shipley
Robert Shipley answered on Sep 17, 2020

I have read both of your questions. Rule 775 does provide that immunity in the context of ARDC communications. It is not clear if the suit you describe is a malpractice claim against you, but if so I would suggest you review with your attorney. If not involving a malpractice claim, but arising from... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Insurance Defense and Legal Malpractice for Illinois on
Q: Must a defense lawyer in Illinois inform his client that he may have insurance coverage for a lawsuit?

Does a defense lawyer practicing in Illinois have an ethical obligation to inform his client that the client may have insurance coverage for a lawsuit that would cover the client's legal fees? Even if this means that the case would have to be tendered to the insurance company and that lawyer... Read more »

Robert Shipley
Robert Shipley answered on Sep 15, 2020

Generally, any claim/case should be reviewed to determine if there is possible insurance coverage. If there is potential coverage then the claim/case should be forwarded to the parties insurance agent who will transmit to the insurance company. If there is coverage, then the insurance company... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy, Contracts, Real Estate Law and Civil Litigation for Illinois on
Q: Will a memorandum of judgement against me for a credit card debt affect my wife's house?

The mortgage is in my wife's name, but I am listed as a "tenant by entirety."

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Sep 10, 2020

Absolutely... The Judgment Lien encumbers any and all interests you have in real property in the County in which the Judgment is recorded in. And you own the same estate your Wife does. Contact a competent Illinois attorney to get the specifics about how long the Lien attaches, and whether... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law and Civil Litigation for Illinois on
Q: Need to know type of lawyer needed

Lent car to a friend to have brakes worked on Friday. Per State police, car was in a hit and run at 4pm Fri. My parents were called at 1030pm, saying car will be towed, if your daughter doesn't call by midnight. (I am visiting from TX.) I returned home after 12mid. Tried to return call, but it... Read more »

George W. Svoboda
George W. Svoboda answered on Aug 18, 2020

Start with a criminal attorney in IL who does traffic tickets even though you weren't driving. Stop talking to the police. Once you get your car back, you can worry about getting it fixed and who pays for the damage. Luckily, you have insurance. USAA will probably take it from there.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Support and Civil Litigation for Illinois on
Q: I am legally separated. My husband's ex-wife wants me to contribute to their child's college tuition.

My husband and I have been legally separated for 9 months, we do not have children together. He has a child from a previous marriage and the mother of the child wants me to contribute to paying for the child's post-secondary education.

Can the mother make\request the court to do that?... Read more »

George W. Svoboda
George W. Svoboda answered on Aug 10, 2020

You state that you can't afford an attorney, but you are being asked to contribute to a college fund. You are going to need to pay somebody. It's probably less expensive in the long run to hire the attorney. Seek out a free consultation and ask for a cost estimate.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Civil Rights, Constitutional Law and Domestic Violence for Illinois on
Q: I have not received any notice of hearing or procedures for divorce decree where my wife of 40years has divorced us

Divorced us in secret from me. I heard finalized March 26th 2020in Clay county of Minnesota. What can be done about no notice on divorce decree? Can I challenge judgment so I can have input into 40years of my life where I am a victim of domestic violence abuse against men by battered husband... Read more »

Cheryl Powell
Cheryl Powell answered on Jul 11, 2020

You say you are homeless. If she did not know how to find you to have you served, she could have served you by publication notice in a newspaper.

Call the Clay County, MN circuit clerk's office. Ask for a copy of your file. Have it emailed to you. See if there is anything you...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation for Illinois on
Q: My sister might b suing me for a right to survivorship bank account I had with our mother who recently passed. Can she?

There is no will and I have been told this bank account is separate from the estate. She might try to prove it should be considered a convenience account.

Robert Shipley
Robert Shipley answered on Jul 10, 2020

If the account is set up right of survivorship, where you and your mother were the co-owners, that means that upon her death you become the sole owner of the account, which passes outside of probate. So I would review how the account was set up to verify your ownership rights. Regarding... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Bankruptcy for Illinois on
Q: Can a lawyer representing one judgment creditor solicit business from the other creditors of the same judgment debtor?
Timothy Denison
Timothy Denison answered on Jul 9, 2020

They can if it does not conflict with the original creditors interests.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation for Illinois on
Q: I took something and want to pay it back. Meeting with party to discuss repayment.

Took some money that wasn’t mine, willing to pay it back , it was a large sum and am meeting with party and their attorney to discuss terms. Can we enter into a repayment agreement without going to court?

George W. Svoboda
George W. Svoboda answered on Jun 29, 2020

You can enter into a settlement without going to court, but you should not say anything or go to that meeting without your own attorney. It is possible you also committed a crime. You need to be prepared to protect your rights. There will also be a settlement document prepared that you will need an... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation for Illinois on
Q: Do I have to go to court to enter into a restitution agreement?

I took something and agreed to pay it back. But don’t want courts involved. Can offer a good faith payment, then remainder next month. Willing to sign agreement based on total they want paid. No charges have been filed as of yet, but I want this be taken care of quickly.

Robert Shipley
Robert Shipley answered on Jun 18, 2020

Your description suggests you took something without permission and have reached an agreement with the owner of the property. An agreement can be prepared and signed which confirms the agreement to repay the money. The agreement should also include the property owner releasing any claims that they... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Contracts, Foreclosure and Real Estate Law for Illinois on
Q: Do I have a claim to a joint interest in the home that my father and I share?

In 2013, my mother passed away leaving me as the sole heir to her estate in her will. My father has encountered mortgage trouble, and I have occupied the home alone for one year now. The current mortgage was taken out in 2005 in both of their names, and statements come addressed to her estate.... Read more »

Robert Shipley
Robert Shipley answered on Jun 11, 2020

Based upon your question, although your mother left you her entire estate, it does not appear that estate included an interest in the home. From your description your father is in sole title to the home and therefore the sole owner. If there are issues regarding the mortgage, those must be... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation for Illinois on
Q: I own property in a private campground that has recently banned concealed carry even with a license ? Is this legal?

The board of directors recently enacted this without a vote of all the owners, just the 5 board members. Are they within their rights or is it a violation of my rights or Illinois law?

Robert Shipley
Robert Shipley answered on Mar 20, 2020

Your question suggests that the property is governed by an Association. There should be Bylaws and a Declaration which define the scope of the Board’s authority and what actions require a vote of the Membership. That will help you determine whether the Board acted within the scope of its... Read more »

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