The thought of planning their estate is stressful to many people, but the Glen Ellyn estate planning attorneys at Wolfe & Stec can do the work for you and take the stress away. While no one wants to consider their own death, the unexpected can happen at any time, so it is important to be prepared. By formulating legally solid estate plans with the help of our skilled attorneys, you can rest easy by ensuring that your wishes are properly carried out, that your family is spared unnecessary expense and delay, and that someone you trust will be in charge if you ever become unable to manage things on your own.
When you call a Glen Ellyn estate attorney from Wolfe & Stec, we will meet with you to discuss your goals and wishes and then prepare your plans accordingly. We will explain the different estate planning documents and draw up necessary documentation based on your needs. We will address all of your estate planning concerns and ensure that your interests and those of your beneficiaries are protected.
We provide a free consultation to discuss your individual situation, so call us today at (630) 305-0222 to get started.
While individual situations vary, the estate planning documents that all Illinois adults need include:
Depending on your situation, Illinois residents may also want to consider taking measures to avoid probate, a court proceeding which can be expensive and time consuming, such as with a living trust, and we can handle this as well. Taxes may also be an issue, and if your estate exceeds $4 million, you may wish to discuss ways to avoid the Illinois estate tax, imposed on only the wealthiest families.
If you die without a will or trust, your assets will be divided according to Illinois intestacy laws, regardless of what you may have wanted. This generally means:
An estate planning lawyer in Glen Ellyn will examine your circumstances and counsel you on your estate planning matters as well as what documents you need.
Depending on your circumstances and goals, it can be beneficial to put property and assets into a trust. A trust is generally an agreement where you (the trustee) hold and manage property for your beneficiaries. Assets that are placed into a trust avoid going through the probate process, so your trust beneficiaries are spared the long and expensive hassle of probate. And, depending on the type of trust, there may be tax and other financial benefits.
If you create a trust under your Will, it’s called a testamentary trust. If you create a trust while you are alive, it’s called a “living” trust. If your circumstances warrant a trust, you have two options:
Your trust agreement names the trustee and the beneficiaries you wish to receive the assets. The agreement defines everyone’s rights and duties, and usually says that you retain power to amend or revoke it whenever you want. A trust is not filed in court, so its provisions are private, unlike a Will, which must be filed in court at death.
Also, if you die without a will, your trust will not be subject to intestate succession, which is when the state decides how a deceased person’s property is distributed. The property in your trust will go directly to the specific beneficiaries you named in it.
Not everyone needs a trust, however. Heirs of people with no real estate and an estate valued under $100,000 are allowed by Illinois state statutes to file a small-estate affidavit to claim an estate without probate.
An estate planning lawyer in Glen Ellyn can review your needs, advise you whether a trust may benefit you, and set one up if desired. Contact Wolfe & Stec for a free consultation by calling (630) 305-0222.
Unless you have in-depth knowledge of estate law and its intricacies, you leave your will or trust open to challenges if they were drafted without legal help. In situations where you failed to name someone who thinks they should inherit as a beneficiary (such as a child you wish to disinherit), that party may decide to bring litigation to challenge your will. Our attorneys will listen to your wishes, discuss the best way to ensure they are followed, and prepare a will or trust for you that is legally definitive and makes sure your intentions are clearly understood. We’ll make sure that those you want to inherit your assets and property actually do.
If litigation is brought and your will or trust is successfully contested, your final wishes will not be carried out. The most common reasons that wills and trusts can be contested include:
All documents have to be done properly, and some require witnesses and notarized signatures. Do not be caught unprepared should something unexpected happen and you wind up being unable to let your decisions be known. Call Wolfe & Stec today at (630) 305-0222.
There is no reason to put off planning for the future when you have the help of a skilled Glen Ellyn, IL, estate planning attorney. We have the extensive experience needed to ensure that your estate plans are legally sound so you can control your end-of-life decisions and who gets your hard-earned assets and property.
Call Wolfe & Stec today to schedule a free consultation at (630) 305-0222. We look forward to helping protect your estate and your family’s future.