The last thing that anyone would want after they pass away is their grieving family members to be haunted by creditors to settle debt obligations. Do the close family members really inherit the debts? Or does the debt follow the deceased person to the grave?

The answers to the above questions are not that simple.

A number of things determine who will be responsible to settle the debt obligations of the deceased person. Here we will take a look at the circumstances regarding the settling of debts in the state of Illinois.

Settling of Debt Obligations in Illinois

Residents of Illinois should know that the debts are not transferred to the family members. The person named in the will — called the Executor — is generally responsible for settling the financial affairs of the deceased person.

In case no will has been mentioned in the will, the court can appoint a person who can be the universal successor, personal representative, or administrator to settle to the affairs. The only situation when the relatives of the deceased person are liable for the debts is if they are joint account holder. Other than that, the debts generally die with the deceased person.

You should note that under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), the creditors or third party debt collection agencies are allowed to contact the spouse or the parent of the deceased to discuss debt obligations. But the creditors are not allowed to settle the debt obligations through personal assets of the deceased persons’ relatives.

Also, the creditors are prohibited from using unfair or abusive practices such as harassing the relatives to force them to pay the debts.

Importance of Hiring An Experienced Probate Attorney

While the beneficiaries or heirs of an estate are not personally liable for any debt obligations of the dead person, the debts will affect the amount that they will receive. That’s the reason you should properly structure your estate plan by calling a probate attorney in Illinois.

A probate attorney will guide you in making correct decisions regarding the future of the inheritance and other topics related to estate administration. The attorney can answer all the questions regarding estate planning so that you can make the best plan. This will help in protecting the assets for your loved ones in case of your uneventful demise.

The beneficiaries can also benefit from hiring an experienced probate attorney. They will know how to settle the financial obligations and also what actions to take to ensure the protection of their assets. You should consult a professional and experienced probate attorney in your area. For more information regarding any aspect of the probate process, you can contact Chicago Estate Lawyer by going to our contact page and filling out an intake sheet. An experienced probate attorney will contact you within 30 minutes of your submission to answer your questions and present you with some options.