Illinois Estate Planning Questions & Answers

Q: I pay house down payment and husband will pay mortgage how to protect my investment until his contribution catches up?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Illinois on
Answered on Dec 17, 2018
James G. Ahlberg's answer
You need to contact an attorney and get a prenuptial agreement prepared setting forth whatever your agreement is. In conjunction with the prenuptial agreement, consider buying the house BEFORE you get married, putting it only in your name, and keeping it only in your name. This should be discussed and coordinated with the attorney who draws up the prenuptial agreement.

Q: Can I put a clause in a will that says I'll give money to my daughter UNLESS she moves abroad?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Dec 6, 2018
Ray Choudhry's answer
If this is not for an unlawful purpose, the provision should hold.

You have an absolute right to disinherit children.

Q: My father is very ill, my mother is still living and estate goes to her and in both names. Does she need to probate?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Illinois on
Answered on Dec 5, 2018
Ray Choudhry's answer
If father dies and everything is in joint names then it all goes to the joint owner.

If there is something in his name alone, it goes to the wife and children.

But there are spousal awards involved.

If there is something in his name alone, he needs to do a will. Not having a will makes it more complicated.

Q: If my husband and I are the joint- with survivorship on his deceased grandmothers bank accounts can they be

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Nov 9, 2018
Ray Choudhry's answer
If it's a true joint account, no.

That's the whole point of setting up the account.

But, if it was a convenience account, other heirs or legatees could argue that it belongs to her estate.

The signature card that was used to set up the account may help.

That is because now accounts can be set up in a number of ways, including pay on death.

Q: I have a life insurance policy on myself. The beneficiary owes child support.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support and Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Nov 5, 2018
Ray Choudhry's answer
The policy funds will go to the beneficiary.

The person owed back child support can get a court order to have these funds applied to the back child support.

Q: how is a property divided amongst surviving children of a deceased parent when no will is left?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Nov 4, 2018
Ray Choudhry's answer
Assuming deceased parent was not married at time of death, the estate is divided equally among all the children.

A deceased child's share goes to his or children.

Q: My mom wants to sell a condo and my sister doesn't. They both own the condo. How do we solve this issue?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Oct 25, 2018
Steve McCann's answer
The answer to your question is dependent on specific facts that are not provided here, such as the type of deed, the names on the deed, who has made majority of the payments, etc... As such, I recommend you organize everything in your possession regarding this matter, including the property address and PIN, and consult with an attorney individually to explore your options.

Q: My brother filed A probate to become the independent executor can I object .

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Illinois on
Answered on Oct 22, 2018
James G. Ahlberg's answer
You can show up on your own, though your odds of success should increase if you have an attorney. If your brother has an attorney, you should definitely have one. If you hire an attorney, bring him or her a copy of the will to review when you meet.

Q: Is there a monetary amount under which my heirs won't have to pay estate taxes?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Oct 20, 2018
Stephanie Sexauer's answer
Heirs don't pay estate taxes; the estate itself might pay estate tax, if the estate exceeds $11,180,000.00 in 2018. The estate may also be subject to income tax if the Decedent earned income that year (the same way a person pays their own income tax each year), or other taxes. Please note, you should consult with an estate planning attorney to clarify this question, as it was vague. This is not legal advice and we have not established an attorney/client relationship.

Q: deceased family member beneficiaries question

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Illinois on
Answered on Oct 16, 2018
James G. Ahlberg's answer
This is more complicated than you realize. No one can answer your question without knowing who the owner of the house was at the time of her death, how the title was held (Life estate? Joint tenancy with someone? Tenancy in common with someone?), whether your mother left a will or not, etc. Gather any documents you can find dealing with the matter and make an appointment with a lawyer.

Q: If I handwrite my will, is that considered a legal document as long as I signed it?

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Oct 6, 2018
Ray Choudhry's answer
A will can be hand written.

However, to be valid it must be signed before two witnesses who are both present and witness the signing.

Q: What rights do beneficiaries have to see a trust they are named in. Can they get a copy of the trust and certification?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Sep 25, 2018
Richard Winblad's answer
Your state probably provides remedies though the courts if a Trustee is uncooperative. These may include requiring that you be shown the trust and/or removal of a trustee. You will need the help of an experienced Illinois attorney.

Q: Question regarding death of executor and my Mom’s estate?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Sep 19, 2018
Ray Choudhry's answer
Has the final accounting been filed and or approved by the court.

If yes, then the funds are identified as belonging to the estate.

After you are appointed successor executor, you can request the court to order release of those estate funds to you.

Q: My grandpa didn't have a will. Now some guy claiming to be his estranged son wants part of the inheritance. If he can

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Sep 14, 2018
Ray Choudhry's answer
If he doesn't have a birth certificate, he will have to prove he is the son.

If there is no will and no spouse, it goes equally to children with the share of any deceased child going to his heirs.

That's just the way it is.

Q: Illinois: Does heir-at-law (child) who is NOT trust beneficiary have right to copy of trust after grantor (parent) dies?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Illinois on
Answered on Sep 8, 2018
T. J. Jesky's answer
In Illinois trusts are regulated by the Illinois Trusts and Trustees Act (see: 760 ILCS 5/1). There is no statutory provision in the Trusts and Trustees Act that gives the trustee a specific time period in which to provide a copy of the trust to a beneficiary. It also depends on the type of beneficiary making the request. Income beneficiaries are different than remainder beneficiaries and so are the fiduciary duties incumbent on the trustee.

Q: Do I have any claim to my best friends home if anything happens to them?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Sep 1, 2018
Jeremy Wang's answer
Without any estate planning directives - the answer is no.

Q: My father passed away from dementia his attorney also I find out has passed how do I get a copy of his will?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Landlord - Tenant, Probate and Real Estate Law for Illinois on
Answered on Aug 29, 2018
Jeremy Wang's answer
Sorry to hear about the passing of your father. If your father quitclaimed the house over to his girlfriend your father no longer owned title to the property when he passed - that is unless you can show the transfer was done under duress, or undue influence, or perhaps maybe even fraud.

If your father left a will - he would have most likely left a copy to someone who he trusted the most to handle the estate. If that was his girlfriend then she has a duty to open up a probate and enter...

Q: My father passed,his wife said she got everything. She is signing over a policy of$18k to me sounds odd as he was wealth

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Illinois on
Answered on Aug 25, 2018
Ray Choudhry's answer
When someone dies leaving a will, in Illinois whoever has the will is required to "lodge" it with the clerk of court.

The will then is available for review by anyone.

Failure to lodge the will is punishable.

If she is the named executor and fails to open an estate, then the successor executor, of if he or she fails to do it, then any of the children can open an estate.

If she fails to open an estate Anyway, if she is the named executor.

An estate is only...

Q: If I drafted my will in Montana do I need a new one now that I live in Illinois?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Aug 22, 2018
Stephanie Sexauer's answer
In my experience, you should. All estate planning documents should be drafted to be specific to the state where you live, by an attorney who knows the laws of Illinois.

You should contact an attorney near you who practices solely in estate law.

Best of luck to you!

Q: If you establish a trust do you still need a will?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Answered on Jul 27, 2018
Ray Choudhry's answer
Yes. To cover the unforeseen.

Sometimes assets are left out of the trust or may not have been put in.

Those are passed through the will.

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