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Mark T. Neil Lawyer

Mark T. Neil

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Estate, Estate Planning, Trusts, Wills & Probate, Business
We Listen to Our Clients' Needs and Develop Practical Solutions.

Mark T. Neil is an Honors graduate of Shimer College and a graduate of Northwestern University School of Law. He served as law clerk to Honorable Howa... (more)

Ira  Silverstein Lawyer

Ira Silverstein

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Estate, Elder Law, Power of Attorney, Divorce & Family Law, Accident & Injury

Senator Ira I. Silverstein was first elected to the Illinois Senate in 1998. Throughout his tenure representing the 8th Senate District, he has been a... (more)

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Michael  Zweig Lawyer

Michael Zweig

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Accident & Injury, Workers' Compensation, Bankruptcy & Debt, Estate, Divorce & Family Law

Mr. Zweig was admitted to the Illinois State Bar, New York State Bar, the California Federal Court and United States Army Court of Military Review in ... (more)

Sidney B Margolis Lawyer

Sidney B Margolis

VERIFIED
Income Tax, Estate Planning, Trusts, Wills & Probate
Sophisticated Income and Estate Planning, Income Tax Return Preparation, and Probate Practice.

Sidney B. Margolis earned a Bachelor of Science in Accountancy Degree from the business school at the University of Illinois at Champaign, Illinois, a... (more)

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Erik B. Diggs Lawyer

Erik B. Diggs

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Divorce & Family Law, Estate

I am a problem solver, not just an Attorney. I look at the whole picture of the problem in order to help you resolve it, whether it is divorce, custod... (more)

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800-942-1310

John  Haderlein Lawyer

John Haderlein

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Bankruptcy & Debt, Real Estate, Estate, Accident & Injury, Workers' Compensation

John Haderlein is an experienced attorney who has been licensed to practice law since 1988. He is licensed in Illinois, Wisconsin and California... (more)

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Donna L. Otis Lawyer

Donna L. Otis

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Estate, Wills & Probate, Elder Law, Power of Attorney, Medicare & Medicaid

Donna L. Otis is recognized for her knowledge of elder law, estate planning, administration, and probate (including decedent's estates and guardianshi... (more)

Monica-Kaye (MK)  Gamble Lawyer

Monica-Kaye (MK) Gamble

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Estate, Business, Divorce & Family Law, Real Estate, Accident & Injury
experience working and representing businesses, government entities, and individuals in Illinois

The peace of mind attained through competent legal representation is priceless. We make this goal easily attainable. We strive to address individual... (more)

Kenneth  Stoppa Lawyer

Kenneth Stoppa

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Estate, Real Estate, Trusts, Wills & Probate

A founding member of the Law Offices of Garrido & Stoppa, P.C., Kenneth Stoppa is a dedicated attorney who consistently strives to provide affordable,... (more)

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LEGAL TERMS

LIFE INSURANCE

A contract in which an insurance company agrees to pay money to a designated beneficiary upon the death of the policy holder. In exchange, the policyholder pays... (more...)
A contract in which an insurance company agrees to pay money to a designated beneficiary upon the death of the policy holder. In exchange, the policyholder pays a regularly scheduled fee, known as the insurance premiums. The purpose of life insurance is to provide financial support to those who survive the policyholder, such as family members or business partners. When the policyholder dies, the insurance proceeds pass to the beneficiaries free of probate, though they are counted for federal estate tax purposes. group life insurance Life insurance available through an employer or association that covers participating employees and members under one master insurance policy. Most group life insurance policies are term insurance policies, that terminate when the member or employee reaches a certain age or leaves the organization and do not accumulate any cash surrender value. term life insurance No-frills life insurance, with neither cash surrender value nor loan value (an amount that can be used as collateral for a loan). Term life insurance provides a pre-set amount of coverage if the policyholder dies during the period of time specified in the policy. Policyholders usually have the option to renew at the end of the term for the period of years specified in the policy. Unlike whole life insurance, premiums generally increase as the insured person gets older and the risk of death increases.universal life insurance A type of whole life insurance that offers some additional features and advantages. Like whole life insurance, universal life insurance accumulates cash value through investment of the premium payments. The unique feature of universal life insurance is that it has variable premiums, benefits and payment schedules, all of which are tied to market interest rates and the performance of the investment portfolio. Also, universal life plicies normally provide you with more consumer information. For example, you are told how much of your policy payments goes for insurance company overhead expenses, reserves and policy proceed payments, and how much is retained and invested for your savings. This information isn't usually provided with whole life policies.variable life insurance A type of whole life insurance in which the amount of death benefits varies, depending on the performance of investments. The insurance company places some or all of the fixed premium payments into an investment account; some companies let the insured person decide how the money is invested. The policyholder bears the risk of investment losses, though there is a guaranteed minimum benefit payment. One benefit of variable insurance is that interest and dividend income from the investment account is not taxed until it is paid out to the policyholder.variable universal life insurance A type of whole life insurance that provides greater potential for financial gain--and brings greater risks. Like universal life insurance, variable universal life insurance offers flexible premiums, payment schedules and benefits. But variable universal life policies are riskier because the premiums are invested in stocks, rather than more predictable money market accounts and bonds. Also called universal variable life insurance.whole life insurance Life insurance that provides coverage for the entire life of the policyholder, who pays the same fixed premium throughout his or her life. The policy builds up cash reserves that may be paid out to the policyholder when he or she surrenders or partially surrenders the policy or uses the cash reserves to fund low-interest loans. The annual increase in the cash value of the policy is not taxed. If the policyholder surrenders the policy, a portion of the payment is not taxable. Also called straight life insurance or ordinary life insurance.

PETITION

A formal written request made to a court, asking for an order or ruling on a particular matter. For example, if you want to be appointed conservator for an elde... (more...)
A formal written request made to a court, asking for an order or ruling on a particular matter. For example, if you want to be appointed conservator for an elderly relative, you must file a petition with a court. See also complaint.

REMAINDERMAN

Someone who will inherit property in the future. For instance, if someone dies and leaves his home 'to Alma for life, and then to Barry,' Barry is a remainderma... (more...)
Someone who will inherit property in the future. For instance, if someone dies and leaves his home 'to Alma for life, and then to Barry,' Barry is a remainderman because he will inherit the home in the future, after Alma dies.

ESTATE TAXES

Taxes imposed by the state or federal government on property as it passes from the dead to the living. All property you own, whatever the form of ownership, and... (more...)
Taxes imposed by the state or federal government on property as it passes from the dead to the living. All property you own, whatever the form of ownership, and whether or not it goes through probate after your death, is subject to federal estate tax. Currently, however, federal estate tax is due only if your property is worth at least $2 million when you die. The estate tax is scheduled to be repealed for one year, in 2010, but Congress will probably make the repeal (or a very high exempt amount) permanent. Any property left to a surviving spouse (if he or she is a U.S. citizen) or a tax-exempt charity is exempt from federal estate taxes. Many states now also impose their own estate taxes or inheritance taxes.

ADEMPTION

The failure of a bequest of property in a will. The gift fails (is 'adeemed') because the person who made the will no longer owns the property when he or she di... (more...)
The failure of a bequest of property in a will. The gift fails (is 'adeemed') because the person who made the will no longer owns the property when he or she dies. Often this happens because the property has been sold, destroyed or given away to someone other than the beneficiary named in the will. A bequest may also be adeemed when the will maker, while still living, gives the property to the intended beneficiary (called 'ademption by satisfaction'). When a bequest is adeemed, the beneficiary named in the will is out of luck; he or she doesn't get cash or a different item of property to replace the one that was described in the will. For example, Mark writes in his will, 'I leave to Rob the family vehicle,' but then trades in his car in for a jet ski. When Mark dies, Rob will receive nothing. Frustrated beneficiaries may challenge an ademption in court, especially if the property was not clearly identified in the first place.

QTIP TRUST

A type of trust for wealthy married couples that allows a surviving spouse to postpone estate taxes. A QTIP trust allows the surviving spouse to make use of the... (more...)
A type of trust for wealthy married couples that allows a surviving spouse to postpone estate taxes. A QTIP trust allows the surviving spouse to make use of the trust property tax-free. Taxes are deferred until the surviving spouse dies and the trust property is received by the final trust beneficiaries, who were named by the first spouse to die.

AB TRUST

A trust that allows couples to reduce or avoid estate taxes. Each spouse puts his or her property in an AB trust. When the first spouse dies, his or her half of... (more...)
A trust that allows couples to reduce or avoid estate taxes. Each spouse puts his or her property in an AB trust. When the first spouse dies, his or her half of the property goes to the beneficiaries named in the trust -- commonly, the grown children of the couple -- with the crucial condition that the surviving spouse has the right to use the property for life and is entitled to any income it generates. The surviving spouse may even be allowed to spend principal in certain circumstances. When the surviving spouse dies, the property passes to the trust beneficiaries. It is not considered part of the second spouse's estate for estate tax purposes. Using this kind of trust keeps the second spouse's taxable estate half the size it would be if the property were left directly to the spouse. This type of trust is also known as a bypass or credit shelter trust.

GRANTOR

Someone who creates a trust. Also called a trustor or settlor.

GRANTOR RETAINED INCOME TRUST

Irrevocable trusts designed to save on estate tax. There are several kinds; with all of them, you keep income from trust property, or use of that property, for ... (more...)
Irrevocable trusts designed to save on estate tax. There are several kinds; with all of them, you keep income from trust property, or use of that property, for a period of years. When the trust ends, the property goes to the final beneficiaries you've named. These trusts are for people who have enough wealth to feel comfortable giving away a substantial hunk of property. They come in three flavors: Grantor-Retained Annuity Trusts (GRATs), Grantor-Retained Unitrusts (GRUTs) and Grantor-Retained Income Trusts (GRITs).

SAMPLE LEGAL CASES

In re Estate of Feinberg

This case involves a dispute among the surviving children and grandchildren of Max and Erla Feinberg regarding the validity of a trust provision. The circuit court of Cook County found the trust provision unenforceable on the basis that it is contrary to the public policy of the state ...

In re Estate of Feinberg

In re ESTATE OF Max FEINBERG, Deceased (Leila R. Taylor, as Independent Coexecutor of the Will of Max Feinberg, Deceased, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. Michael B. Feinberg, Individually and as Coexecutor of the Will of Max Feinberg, Deceased; Fifth Third Bank, as Trustee under ...

In re Estate of Ellis

Grace Ellis executed a will in 1964 naming Shriners Hospitals for Children (Shriners) as beneficiary of her estate if she died without direct descendants. In 1999, she executed a new will naming James G. Bauman as sole beneficiary. Bauman was the pastor of the church of which ...