Bankruptcy is the legal process where persons declare that they are unable to pay their debts and request relief from the court. There are two basic purposes of bankruptcy: to give the debtor a fresh start and to repay creditors to the extent that the debtor has non-exempt assets. Bankruptcy comes in two forms, liquidation and reorganization. The four types of bankruptcies available to private individuals fall under one of these two forms. Liquidation Chapter 7, also known as “liquidation,” is usually the simplest and quickest form of bankruptcy. In […]
Yes, but some restrictions do apply. In 2005, the Bankruptcy Code was amended to impose additional requirements on anyone wishing to file a bankruptcy case. The new law now requires that debtors perform a “means test” to determine whether or not they are capable of paying back a portion of their debts. If a debtor qualifies under the means test, he, she or they may file under Chapter 7. However, if the debtor does not meet the means test’s standards, the debtor likely will have to file their case under […]
Whether bankruptcy is an option for you depends very much on your particular financial circumstances and what you hope to accomplish. You should consider first whether bankruptcy will “discharge” (i.e. release you from liability) enough of your debts. Debts that are “non-dischargeable” will have to be paid even after bankruptcy. The primary debts that are non-dischargeable are as follows: Income tax debt, unless: – the debt is more than 3 years old, and – a correct & timely tax return was filed. Student Loans, unless repayment would cause undue hardship […]
Probate is the judicial process whereby a will is “proved” in a court of law and accepted as a valid public document that is the true last testament of the deceased, or whereby the estate is settled according to the laws of intestacy in the state of residence of the deceased at time of death in the absence of a legal will.
Illinois law requires that any person who possesses the Will of a decedent file it with the Clerk of the Circuit Court of the county in which that individual resided within 30 days after the death of the testator is known to him.
If the decedent had a will, the person named in the will as the Executor will usually serve, if eligible. If that person is unable or unwilling to serve as Executor, or if there is no Will, then any interested family member or person can petition the Court to be the administrator of the Estate.
Illinois law provides that the Executor is entitled to “reasonable compensation” for their services. This amount could vary and is case-dependent.
If trust was drafted properly and is fully funded, then usually no. Sometimes, if a trust was prepared years ago and was never updated, then newly-acquired assets may not be owned in the name of the trust and must therefore go through probate. That is why it is so very important that you have regular reviews of your plan and assets so the planning you do now works as planned later.
Assets owned solely in the name of the deceased person are subject to probate. Assets that pass by means of title, such as real estate titled as “Joint Tenants with Right of Survivorship,” or accounts titled as “Transfer On Death” are usually not subject to the probate process. Assets that pass by means of a beneficiary designation, such as life insurance or some retirement accounts, are also not subject to probate.
The length of time of a probate will depend on several factors. It usually takes a minimum of 12 months and can take up to two years or even longer for some cases.
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