Rockford Wills & Probate Lawyer, Illinois


Includes: Estate Administration, Living Wills, Wills

Keith  Morse Lawyer

Keith Morse

VERIFIED
Divorce & Family Law, Collaborative Law, Wills & Probate

Attorney Keith S. Morse has more than 45 years of experience representing clients in a diverse range of practice areas. Drawing on his various experie... (more)

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CONTACT

815-967-5000

Mark C. Johnson

Lawsuit & Dispute, Real Estate, Contract, Wills & Probate
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  28 Years

Jeffrey E. Hardyman

Wills & Probate, Corporate, Franchising, Banking & Finance
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  32 Years

Curtis D. Worden

Wills, Wills & Probate, Corporate, Banking & Finance
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  59 Years
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Gary L Ecklund

Construction, Wills, Wills & Probate, Trusts
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  58 Years

David E Mayfield

Construction, Wills & Probate, Franchising, Banking & Finance
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  52 Years

David L Davitt

Government Agencies, Wills & Probate, Family Law, Banking & Finance
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  39 Years

Timothy Whitham

Wills, Estate Planning, Business, Personal Injury
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  23 Years

Thomas S. Johnson

Estate Planning, Corporate, Wills & Probate
Status:  In Good Standing           

Deron Robert Benson

Real Estate, Family Law, Trusts, Wills & Probate
Status:  In Good Standing           Licensed:  28 Years

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LEGAL TERMS

ABATEMENT

A reduction. After a death, abatement occurs if the deceased person didn't leave enough property to fulfill all the bequests made in the will and meet other exp... (more...)
A reduction. After a death, abatement occurs if the deceased person didn't leave enough property to fulfill all the bequests made in the will and meet other expenses. Gifts left in the will are cut back in order to pay taxes, satisfy debts or take care of other gifts that are given priority under law or by the will itself.

CURATOR

See conservator.

EMPLOYEE RETIREMENT INCOME SECURITY ACT OF 1974 (ERISA)

A federal law passed to protect pension rights. ERISA: sets minimum standards for pension plans, guaranteeing that pension rights cannot be unfairly denied to o... (more...)
A federal law passed to protect pension rights. ERISA: sets minimum standards for pension plans, guaranteeing that pension rights cannot be unfairly denied to or taken from a worker provides some protection for workers in the event certain types of pension plans cannot pay the benefits to which workers are entitled, and requires that employers provide full and clear information about employees' pension rights, including the way pension benefits accumulate, how the company invests pension funds, and when and how pension benefits can be collected.

SUMMARY PROBATE

A relatively simple probate proceeding available for 'small estates,' as that term is defined by state law. Every state's definition is different, and many are ... (more...)
A relatively simple probate proceeding available for 'small estates,' as that term is defined by state law. Every state's definition is different, and many are complicated, but a few examples include estates worth up to $100,000 in California; New York estates where property, excluding real estate and amounts that must be set aside for surviving family members, is worth $20,000 or less; and Texas estates where the value of property doesn't exceed what is needed to pay a family allowance and certain creditors.

PROVING A WILL

Convincing a probate court that a document is truly the deceased person's will. Usually this is a simple formality that the executor or administrator easily sat... (more...)
Convincing a probate court that a document is truly the deceased person's will. Usually this is a simple formality that the executor or administrator easily satisfies by showing that the will was signed and dated by the deceased person in front of two or more witnesses. When the will is holographic -- that is, completely handwritten by the deceased and not witnessed, it is still valid in many states if the executor can produce relatives and friends to testify that the handwriting is that of the deceased.

TESTAMENTARY TRUST

A trust created by a will, effective only upon the death of the willmaker.

TRUSTEE

The person who manages assets owned by a trust under the terms of the trust document. A trustee's purpose is to safeguard the trust and distribute trust income ... (more...)
The person who manages assets owned by a trust under the terms of the trust document. A trustee's purpose is to safeguard the trust and distribute trust income or principal as directed in the trust document. With a simple probate-avoidance living trust, the person who creates the trust is also the trustee.

MINERAL RIGHTS

An ownership interest in the minerals contained in a particular parcel of land, with or without ownership of the surface of the land. The owner of mineral right... (more...)
An ownership interest in the minerals contained in a particular parcel of land, with or without ownership of the surface of the land. The owner of mineral rights is usually entitled to either take the minerals from the land himself or receive a royalty from the party that actually extracts the minerals.

SPECIFIC BEQUEST

A specific item of property that is left to a named beneficiary under a will. If the person who made the will no longer owns the property when he dies, the bequ... (more...)
A specific item of property that is left to a named beneficiary under a will. If the person who made the will no longer owns the property when he dies, the bequest fails. In other words, the beneficiary cannot substitute a similar item in the estate. Example: If John leaves his 1954 Mercedes to Patti, and when John dies the 1954 Mercedes is long gone, Patti doesn't receive John's current car or the cash equivalent of the Mercedes. See ademption.

SAMPLE LEGAL CASES

In re Estate of Ellis

... Bauman was the pastor of the church of which Ellis was a member. When Ellis died in 2003, the 1999 will was admitted to probate. ... The circuit court of Cook County dismissed all counts as untimely pursuant to section 8-1 of the Probate Act of 1975 (755 ILCS 5/8-1 (West 2006)). ...

Wackrow v. Niemi

... James Woods died in August 2002. Letters of office were issued and Woods' will was admitted to probate on October 23, 2002. ... The estate did not deliver the property or the $300,000 to plaintiff. On October 24, 2003, the probate court denied plaintiff's claim against the estate. ...

In re Estate of Feinberg

... freedom. The Probate Act places only two limits on the ability of a testator to choose the objects of his bounty. ... desire. Under the Probate Act, Max and Erla had no obligation to make any provision at all for their grandchildren. ...