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Illinois Estate Planning Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Elder Law for Illinois on
Q: Uncle left house to another family member with stipulation my parents could live for set rent price for life.

My mother took care of my great uncle years ago before he passed away. He left the house she lives in, to his granddaughter with the stipulation my parents could live there for life for a set rent price. They sold the property to another company and that is not being honoured anymore. Rent has... Read more »

Charles E. Hutchinson
Charles E. Hutchinson answered on Jan 20, 2022

If your great uncle stipulated in his will or in his trust that your parents could live in the house at a set rent price, then depending on how those instructions were worded - it is possible that your mom has a case. If this was an "understanding" not in writing, the case becomes much... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Probate for Illinois on
Q: What can the disabled ward do? When the ward and guardian disagree? What options does the ward have
Stephanie Sexauer
Stephanie Sexauer answered on Jan 17, 2022

A Ward has the opportunity to seek to restore himself or herself at any time. This request can be made to the Judge directly or to the Guardian ad Litem (if one was appointed). Though it's not required, it would aide the Judge in making a determination that your circumstances have changed so... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Elder Law, Estate Planning and Health Care Law for Illinois on
Q: If a parent is put in a memory care assisted living by a POA. As a heir can I find or get a look at the POA

I believe fraud is Occurring

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Dec 8, 2021

There isn't a real good way for you to get a look at it, because neither the principal nor the agent are obligated to share it with you. But if you have good grounds to suspect that elder abuse (financial or emotional or other) is taking place, then report it to your local Adult Protective... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: My mother passed away in July. There is a will that states to split evenly between me and my sibling.

He paid for funeral, paid off her car, her house payment, some bills (like electric and so on until the house was sold last week. What expenses are considered acceptable? Now, when splitting the money. Does he get to factor in those expenses and basically leave me with nothing? Just doesn't... Read more »

Stephanie Sexauer
Stephanie Sexauer answered on Nov 5, 2021

I'm so sorry to hear about your mother; I hope you're hanging in there.

Yes, it's appropriate for most costs in "finalizing" your mother's affairs be deducted from an estate before any heir receives their share. All bills of an estate must be paid, and...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: what power do a executor over a will have
Charles E. Hutchinson
Charles E. Hutchinson answered on Oct 17, 2021

Executors have the power to fulfill the wishes of the grantor of the will. They have the power to pay all debts owed by the estate of the deceased, to collect money owed to the deceased on behalf of the estate, to pay all taxes, and to distribute all remaining assets after debts have been paid, to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Family Law, Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Illinois on
Q: how to get a family member out of home.

3 brothers have inherited a large home, one of the brothers are living there and cannot maintain the home due to alcoholism. Each has a 1/3 of real estate as stated in the will. He refused to pay the other 2 brothers rent or expenses. He needs to go to detox and rehab. He is incapable to help with... Read more »

Bryan R. Bagdady
Bryan R. Bagdady answered on Oct 1, 2021

Illinois has a partition statute to handle situations concerning jointly held real property. The statute is found at 735 ILCS 5/17-101, et seq. If you read section 105 you will see that the court has the power to determine if the property can be divided among the parties without prejudice to any of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: I have been separated from my husband for years and he has recently passed away. Am I entitled to anything of his
Bryan R. Bagdady
Bryan R. Bagdady answered on Sep 14, 2021

If your husband died with a will, you should review the provisions of the will. If he died without a will, then the Probate Act provides at 755 ILCS 5/2-1, that "Sec. 2-1. Rules of descent and distribution. The intestate real and personal estate of a resident decedent and the intestate real... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law, Estate Planning and Business Law for Illinois on
Q: Can I list a specific chapter of a fraternity as a beneficiary on a 401K?

I'm opening a 401k with my new employer and want to know if I can list my former fraternity's chapter specifically as my beneficiary or not. Assume that there will be no spouse in the picture and that the beneficiary will be updated if there is.

Charles E. Hutchinson
Charles E. Hutchinson answered on Sep 13, 2021

I would NOT list your fraternity as a beneficiary to your 401K, but rather make other arrangements in your estate plan. As to if you can name a specific chapter in your fraternity - that could depend on the fraternity, so I cannot give you a good answer on that, you would need to speak to them.... Read more »

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Q: Bout identity theft. Ant inheritance

My gmaw passed away an I was post to get one fifth of the inheritance. I was in prison. Now they say that it all got stolen an there is nothing I can do. I no my mom got my gmaw van n lost it n my sis got a few things I never received anything. They haven't ss# n all my info I think they might... Read more »

Kevin E. Flynn
Kevin E. Flynn answered on Aug 4, 2021

I am so sorry that this happened to you. Your question went out to attorneys that file patents for inventions. There is not a category for paRents which is what you may have been trying to hit. You may want to add Family Law to the category set.

You may want to contact Legal Aid near...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Illinois on
Q: Hello my name is Amber . My gma recently passed and her nephew is executer . he hasnt said much of anything of will .

he is beneficiary of her bank accounts apparently i found out there is allot of money and he isnt speaking of any of it should i get attorney i am named in the will as a beneficiary too

Charles E. Hutchinson
Charles E. Hutchinson answered on Jun 28, 2021

Sorry for your loss, Amber. If you are sure that there is a will, and if you are sure that your cousin is the executor, you should ask the executor. These things do take time to work themselves out, so depending on "recently", it may still have a lot of time before it is all said and... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: Do I have to be informed that I'm named to a will? How can I find out if I'm also named in the trust?

I'm from Illinois. I was named in my fathers will. There is also a trust attached to the will. I am estranged from my family so simply asking the executor is out of the question. I was never notified of the will being filed in probate (I found out doing a probate search online). My question is... Read more »

Charles E. Hutchinson
Charles E. Hutchinson answered on Jun 16, 2021

Being named in a will does not necessarily mean that you will inherit from the will. I doubt that the attorney who drafted the will is going to answer your questions. If the decedent's estate plan included a trust, it is very unlikely that the probate attorney will be of much help unless... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: Good Morning, I am writing to you because my mother is 83 years old and wants to get her estate done.

We do not know to go about it so if you steer us to the right direction, we would really appreciate it. Also you can let us know what would she need to get her things in order. Thank you

Charles E. Hutchinson
Charles E. Hutchinson answered on Jun 10, 2021

Good Morning!

Your mother should contact a few estate planning attorneys to find one she is comfortable working with on her estate plan. The attorney can discuss options based on the initial consultation about how she might best set up her estate plan.

3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Illinois on
Q: My dad passed away and without my knowledge my sister sold his home and kept the money.What can I do to receive my part?
Steven J. Fromm
Steven J. Fromm answered on Jun 5, 2021

Without knowing the specific facts it is hard to tell what is going on here. For example, if your dad had transferred the real estate to her during his lifetime, then she is within her rights to sell the property as she is the rightful owner. You could check with the Recorder of Deeds in the... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: I am moving to the suburbs and I have a condo I want to give the condo to my son .

There is still a mortgage on it and just want to know as long as he takes over the mortgage I want to give him the property

Charles E. Hutchinson
Charles E. Hutchinson answered on May 10, 2021

There is not a question, only a situation. And it really isn't estate planning.

You cannot give him the property as long as he takes over the mortgage. How do you plan on giving him the property, and when? Is this transfer to be done in your will? Will you deed the property over...
Read more »

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4 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: At what size Net Worth should I consider a Trust instead of a Will?
Stephanie Sexauer
Stephanie Sexauer answered on May 5, 2021

Hi there,

Congratulations for considering an estate plan! It's so important to do this as soon as you're able, but we know most people don't (which makes their estates ultimately much messier and more expensive when they become disabled or die). I'm assuming you're...
Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights, Estate Planning and Probate for Illinois on
Q: Can you fight the family of a deceased transgender woman, who legally changed her name, on trying to bury her as a “him”
J. Richard Kulerski Esq.
J. Richard Kulerski Esq. answered on Apr 10, 2021

The law school that I went to never touched this subject. I would suspect that there is no authority whatsoever answering your question.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Illinois on
Q: There's a trust fund and it's my brother & I but he's refused to let me see any of the paperwork do I have a right

There's also a house he claimed he bought from my parents I asked him

Show proof he will not its part of the asset well time is up and he will not add the house just wants to split the trust as is what is my legal right he also had to take money out of the trust fund to pay off this... Read more »

Charles E. Hutchinson
Charles E. Hutchinson answered on Apr 8, 2021

If you are a beneficiary you have a right to see at least some of the trust paperwork, and likely all of it. Some trusts may include language limiting information which can be shared. It sounds like your brother is the named trustee. To start, you can ask to see the names of trustees in the... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Arbitration / Mediation Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Illinois on
Q: Thank you. I do understand that to be true.... 1 family member however that is wanting to sell, does not want to...

Give up their mineral rights to the land... can they really have the best of both worlds & ultimately screw the other 2 family members.

Charles E. Hutchinson
Charles E. Hutchinson answered on Mar 29, 2021

When it comes to selling and buying, most everything is negotiable. If they are not willing to sell 100% of their share, then the value of that share may be greatly diminished. The remaining plaintiffs could sue in court demanding that the sale include mineral rights, although nothing is... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Arbitration / Mediation Law and Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: So for the family members that don’t want to sell

Isn’t there any way to stop this?

It has been in our family a very long time & it is not divided up...

this isn’t right - there has to be away to stop it

Charles E. Hutchinson
Charles E. Hutchinson answered on Mar 27, 2021

Those who don't want to sell can buy the fair market value of those who want to sell. Otherwise, there may be language in the will or trust which has provisions regarding the sale of items such as a specific number or % of beneficiaries required to sell assets.

2 Answers | Asked in Arbitration / Mediation Law, Real Estate Law and Estate Planning for Illinois on
Q: Inherited undivided interest in a large amount of land, that has mineral rights. Can one of the family members force the

The other family members to sell the land? This land has been in our family for an extremely long time & some don’t want to sell.

J. Richard Kulerski Esq.
J. Richard Kulerski Esq. answered on Mar 27, 2021

Those who want to sell can file a lawsuit for Partition. They will win. This will give the court the power to sell the property at auction and divide the proceeds among all the owners. An auction sale is not likely to bring in as much money as a regular sale.

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