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probate litigation Archives

How will divorce affect my estate plan?

Divorce causes a lot of changes in a person's life. This is especially true when it comes to estate plans, which many people neglect after their divorce has been finalized. Not updating your estate plan will cause major issues and may even result in probate court if you fail to remove your ex-spouse as an heir. Forbes explains what changes should be made to estate planning documents after a divorce so you can rest assured it continues to meet your wishes. 

Probate, beneficiaries and emotions

The probate process can present a number of hurdles for families to work through, and these issues can be especially tough after a loved one has passed on. In this post, we will look beyond the legal and financial impact of the probate process and examine the emotional side of this topic. Specifically, the emotional impact of the probate process from a beneficiary’s point of view. Whether you are in charge of your loved one’s estate plan and have to deal with disgruntled beneficiaries or you are a beneficiary yourself, it is important to understand this side of probate.

Avoid probate litigation with a beneficiary deed

If you have a family home in Illinois and several potential heirs, you may want to make arrangements before you die to keep it out of probate. For parents who have several children, this may cause a contentious situation once they have passed away. At Zapolis & Associates, P.C., we often assist clients in the probate and administration process.

Probate litigation and sibling disputes

Probate litigation can be challenging for countless reasons, but this process can be especially complicated when sibling disputes occur. There are different reasons why siblings may find themselves in the middle of a difficult dispute, whether they disagree over key issues regarding the way in which an estate plan is being managed or they have struggled with a longstanding rivalry. If you are going through a probate dispute involving one of your siblings, it is imperative to handle the situation properly and do what you can to minimize some of the problems that can arise during these disputes.

What are the signs of undue influence?

Undue influence refers to the act of one person inducing another to act in a way in which the victim would not have acted had he or she been acting of his or her own free will. Typically, the victim does not fully understand the consequences of his or her actions. Sadly, undue influence over disabled and elderly individuals is a pervasive problem in Illinois and throughout the U.S., especially as an aging person prepares to transition large sums of wealth via an estate plan. You can help protect your elderly loved one, yourself and other beneficiaries by recognizing the signs of undue influence.

What steps can I take to contest a will?

A valid estate plan expresses the wishes of the deceased in terms of property and assets. However, families in Illinois sometimes find fault with the contents of a will, and as a result they may choose to contest it. This is a time-consuming and expensive process, so before proceeding it's best to understand all that's involved.

Who can contest a will?

In Illinois, not just anyone is able to challenge or contest a will. However, certain groups of people or individuals can, as long as they fit the right criteria. Though they have a timeframe in which to act, it is important for anyone dealing with wills to know about the possibility.

What happens during the probate process?

If you have recently lost a friend or family member, you may be overwhelmed with emotions of hurt and loss. In addition to those feelings, you may have to help with the process of settling your friend or family member's estate. In some cases, the estate will enter into the probate process. In Illinois and in many other states across the nation, the probate process is designed to assist in finalizing any property and assets left behind by the deceased. Whether named by the deceased in the last will and testament or appointed by the court, the executor or estate administrator is in charge of seeing the case through the probate process.

What happens during a probate hearing?

When a person dies without a will or there are questions regarding its validity, the person's estate will move to probate. This process has many different components, from proving that a will is indeed valid to settling any remaining debt. The Balance offers the following information on what families can expect during a probate hearing.

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Mokena, IL 60448

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