Probate Attorney in Naperville, Chicago, and Western Suburbs
Illinois and Indiana probate attorneys help navigate estate administration procedures. Probate is the court process of distributing assets after someone dies while managing claims made against the deceased person’s estate. Probate court proceedings are necessary for various circumstances, including distributing assets, paying liabilities, or contesting a will or trust. The Illinois and Indiana probate process can be emotional and challenging when grieving the loss of a loved one. An experienced probate attorney in our Naperville office can help you and your family members understand and manage the probate process. We also serve residents of Northwest Indiana. So if you live in areas like Portage, Valparaiso, Chesterton, LaPorte, Michigan City, Crown Point, Cedar Lake, or Hobart, we can help.
Illinois and Indiana Estate Administration
Illinois and Indiana probate law provides structure for the distribution of assets and payment of debts following the death of a person. Individuals who have undertaken estate planning can direct the distribution of assets and nominate a trusted person to be executor of their estate by executing a valid will (testacy). If the decedent did not execute a will (intestacy), the court transfers the assets according to the laws of intestate succession which is a formulaic (not personalized) approach to managing the assets of the deceased person and appoints a person to administer the estate.
For smaller Illinois and Indiana estates (less than $100,000 in value and not including real estate), the personal representative may pay debts and transfer assets through a document sometimes referred to as a “Small Estate Affidavit” rather than through the court-monitored probate estate process. If Illinois or Indiana probate administration is required, then the executor named in the will is expected to conduct a legal process and follow complex rules until the court permits the distribution of those assets.
The Value of a Chicago Area and Northwest Indiana Estate Administration Attorney
Our experienced estate administration and probate legal team in our Naperville, Illinois, and Northwest Indiana offices will provide guidance and assistance to you as personal representatives (executors, administrators, and sometimes trustees) of a deceased person’s estate if you have been nominated to act as a personal representative. We provide the professional support required in fulfilling your duties, including the preparation of all the necessary documents, proper direction and advice, and attend the court appearances leading to the distribution of the deceased person’s assets after settlement of their valid liabilities.
Understanding Guardianship in Chicago’s Collar Counties and Northwest Indiana
“Guardianship” grants an individual legal authority to manage the affairs of a dependent minor child or disabled adult person when those persons are unable to make their own decisions due to physical or mental incapacity. Under the Illinois and Indiana Probate Acts, courts conduct proceedings leading to the appointment of guardians. The court must complete several steps before a person can be appointed, including filing and serving the appropriate legal documents and attending multiple court proceedings. In other circumstances involving temporary circumstances, a person may be appointed for a “short-term” or “standby” to meet the needs of the disabled person on a short-term basis without court proceedings.
The Importance of an Experienced Illinois or Indiana Guardianship Lawyer
Our attorney(s) can explain the responsibilities and duties that the guardianship appointment entails. We work closely with you to draft a short-term guardianship or begin legal proceedings to form a permanent guardianship in Illinois or Indiana. We educate you on the required legal procedures, such as gathering evidence and interviewing witnesses required to establish guardianship in the Chicago area and Northwest Indiana courtrooms.
The Law Office of Edward P. Graham, Ltd. has assisted clients like you and your loved ones for nearly 30 years and understands and implements successful strategies in estate planning, business law, Illinois/Indiana litigation, probate, family law, and real estate law. We urge you to contact our Naperville office to learn more about how we can help meet your probate and estate administration needs in DuPage County, Will County, Kane County, and other surrounding counties in Illinois. Contact our Indiana office to address probate and estate administration if you live in Porter County, Lake County, and LaPorte County in Indiana.