Probate, Estate & Trust Administration
Our Orland Park Trust & Estate Lawyers Can Help You Avoid Probate
Probate, estate, and trust administration are the processes through which estate assets are transferred after death. When probate avoidance planning has not been implemented prior to death, the state will require a probate court proceeding.
Probate Avoidance in Illinois
Because probate can be a lengthy, costly and public process, many people strive to avoid it. There are a number of legal strategies that allow you to pass property to another person after death, without going through probate.
- Joint Tenancy & Tenancy by the Entirety. Adding another person to your assets as a joint owner or “joint tenant with rights of survivorship” will allow your property to pass to them upon your death without going through probate.
- Beneficiary Designations. Illinois allows Transfer on Death (TOD) or Pay on Death (POD) beneficiary designations to be added to bank accounts. Beneficiary designations like these are preferable to joint tenancy in that they allow you to transfer property only upon your death without giving away current ownership.
- Revocable Living Trust. A Revocable Living Trust is a legal document that allows you to establish a separate entity (the trust) to “hold” legal title to your assets while you are alive, and to name trustees to manage those assets according to the trust terms. A properly drafted trust can accomplish many goals, including guardianship and probate avoidance for your estate and bloodline, marital and creditor protection for your children.