Death Related Probate is the legal process for determining and distributing assets and property after an individual’s death. The process is automatic, paperwork-heavy, and generally includes fees for both the attorney and the executor of the estate. Fortunately, in Illinois there are many options for avoiding probate and streamlining the process of administering an estate.
Probate involves the administering attorney, estate administrator, and the state. Additionally, any entity involved in a contractual, financial, or direct family relationship with the deceased may be involved with probate.
Probate can be a long, expensive and confusing process. The loss of a loved one is an emotional and traumatic event for families. The legal aspects of settling an estate through probate can be stressful, and even a financial disaster for the bereaved. Additionally, probate may not best represent the wishes of the deceased.
The best way to avoid probate is through estate planning now. Everyone should have a Will. It is also important to create trust documents, designate a successor trustee, and decide which trusts will be revocable or irrevocable. Designate who is payable on death in your financial instruments. The beneficiary for your bank accounts, financial vehicles and property can be designated on most legal forms in Illinois. Forms include vehicle registrations, deeds and registrations for securities. Beneficiaries may include trusts, and carry tax benefits for your beneficiaries. Joint tenancy is also protected from probate.
Eileen Kerlin Walsh P.C. and Associates offer extensive estate planning and trust experience. Please call 708-448-5169 to schedule a consultation. Eileen will help you prepare the documents and create a detailed plan to ease the burden of your loved ones.