Choosing an estate planning lawyer in Joliet is an important decision, the choice you make today can have ramifications for years. Finding an attorney locally can be a difficult and stressful process. We’d like to invite you to call one of our highly qualified estate attorneys and discuss the details of your matter. We’ll answer all of your questions up front and quickly, and tell you everything you need to know to create a solid estate plan.

The most effective way to plan your estate is to work with a verified estate planning lawyer in Joliet, Il and that’s where can help. We’ve hand selected attorneys serving the area based on experience, and practice focus specifically on estate planning, probate and related matters. We invite you to choose from our verified estate planning lawyers who serve Joliet and the surrounding communities to help you with your will, living trust or probate matter.

Choose a Verified Lawyer

Estate Plan Essentials

Your comprehensive estate plan will include at least one of the following, and possibly multiple elements:

  • Will – A will is a legally binding document within your plan that outlines who will receive your assets. Your beneficiaries do not have to be your relatives – you can leave assets to a charitable organization or an institution, such as your alma mater;

  • Power of Attorney – You can grant friends or family members power of attorney – the right to make medical, financial, and personal decisions on your behalf who can act in your best interest when you cannot make decisions for yourself;

  • Living Trusts – A living trust actually holds the legal title to your property, (usually real estate), then it legally transfers it to a beneficiary after you pass. This helps avoid a time consuming and expensive probate;

  • Instructions – You need to instruct for the care of your minor children or disabled adult children.

Probate (Death Intestate) – Death Without a Will or Living Trust

If you don’t have a will or living trust in place when you pass away, your assets are subject to Illinois’ intestacy laws. Even if you have written a will but not a living trust, your assets will likely go to probate. These laws determine which parties are to inherit a deceased individual’s assets depending on which descendants he or she has. This can be contested in probate court, but it is an expensive and lengthy process.

Probate is the process through which the court identifies and appraises a deceased individual’s assets, then pays the associated taxes and debts, followed by distributing the remaining assets to the deceased’s beneficiaries. Choosing an experienced Probate attorney in Joliet to help you draft or modify your plan can reduce or even eliminate the need for an estate to go through probate, which can be expensive for the deceased’s family and potentially create family arguments and problems.

After receiving assets, whether through a will or intestacy succession, beneficiaries can be subject to estate taxes if the deceased did not take careful measures to reduce or eliminate these taxes. In some cases, receiving assets can put a beneficiary deep into debt.

Choosing an Estate Planning Lawyer

An experienced estate planning lawyer is well-versed in Illinois law, federal law, and the products and investment options available to you. Instead of facing this confusing, complicated process yourself, work with one of our verified attorneys who can act as your guide and advocate. Schedule your initial consultation with a Joliet, Il estate planning law firm and be sure to prepare a list of questions and concerns before your appointment. A productive conversation about estate planning will lead to empowered, productive choices.