Peck Ritchey, LLC provides an array of services for seniors, including planning for health care decisions and end-of-life issues; long-term care planning; general estate planning and administration; and guardianship. Our legal team offers efficient and respectful service when locating the appropriate type of care, coordinating private and public resources to finance the cost of care and working to ensure that clients receive quality care.

The Importance of Estate Planning

Estate planning is the process of arranging for the management and disposal of an individual’s estate during their lifetime and after their death. This involves making decisions about the distribution of assets, the care of dependents, and the fulfillment of financial and health-related wishes. The importance of estate planning can be highlighted through several key aspects:

Asset Distribution and Wealth Preservation:

Intentional Distribution: Estate planning allows individuals to specify how their assets should be distributed among beneficiaries. This helps ensure that assets go to the intended individuals or organizations.

Minimizing Taxes: Proper estate planning can help minimize the impact of taxes on an estate. Strategies such as trusts and gifting can be employed to reduce tax liabilities, preserving more wealth for heirs.

Protection of Loved Ones:

Minor Children: Estate planning is crucial for parents with minor children. It allows them to name guardians who will care for their children in the event of the parent’s death.

Dependent Adults: For individuals caring for dependent adults, such as disabled family members, estate planning can ensure the continuity of care and financial support.

Avoiding Probate Delays and Costs:

Probate Avoidance: Proper estate planning can help bypass or minimize the probate process. Probate can be time-consuming and costly, and avoiding it allows for a smoother and quicker distribution of assets to beneficiaries.

Healthcare Decision-Making:

Advance Healthcare Directives: Estate planning includes creating documents like living wills and healthcare proxies, which specify an individual’s wishes regarding medical treatment and appoint someone to make healthcare decisions on their behalf if they cannot do so.

Financial Management in Case of Incapacity:

Power of Attorney: Estate planning allows individuals to appoint someone they trust to manage their financial affairs in case they become incapacitated. This ensures ongoing financial management and the ability to make important decisions.

Business Succession Planning:

Business Owners: For business owners, estate planning is critical for determining the future of the business. It allows for a smooth ownership transition, ensuring that the business can continue to operate successfully after the owner’s death.

Avoiding Family Disputes:

Clear Instructions: Estate planning documents provide clear instructions on asset distribution and the management of affairs. This helps minimize the potential for family conflicts and legal disputes among heirs.

Preserving Family Harmony:

Fair Distribution: Estate planning allows individuals to consider the needs and circumstances of each beneficiary, promoting fair and equitable distribution of assets. This can help maintain family harmony and relationships.

Charitable Giving:

Philanthropy: Estate planning facilitates charitable giving by allowing individuals to include charitable organizations in their estate plans. This can create a lasting legacy and support causes important to the individual.

Peace of Mind:

Personal Choices: Knowing that one’s wishes are documented and legally binding provides peace of mind. Estate planning allows individuals to control what happens to their assets and how their affairs are managed, both during their lifetime and after their passing.

In summary, estate planning is not just for the wealthy but a valuable process for individuals at all income levels. It allows for the thoughtful and organized transfer of assets, protecting loved ones, and fulfilling personal wishes, ultimately providing a sense of security and control over one’s legacy.

At Peck Ritchey we have assembled an array of elder law attorneys who concentrate in all those different areas.

Our Chicago elder law firm offers services that address all areas of elder care, including:

Finding the right elder law lawyer starts with an assessment of your needs. If you need help with estate planning, our Chicago elder law firm has strong estate planning experience. If your rights have been violated, our elder law litigation lawyers will go to court and fight for you and your loved ones.

Peck Ritchey’s extensive experience in the practice of elder law includes working with the city of Chicago’s Department on Aging to rewrite the Elder Abuse and Neglect Act. Kerry Peck founded the Elder Law Committee of the Chicago Bar Association, and Peck Ritchey is a proud National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys member.

Every one of our elder law lawyers cares about seniors, their unique needs, and their individual situations. We understand that you’ll be sharing very personal information with us and sometimes be making tough decisions. Our attorneys will listen to your concerns, evaluate your needs, and help you find the best way to meet those needs. Contact Peck Ritchey, LLC’s Chicago elder law attorneys today for a free initial consultation.



Tim and his staff was very helpful with my estate planning. I appreciated his thorough nature. I would recommend Peck Ritchey to others looking for estate planning.


My experience was flawless and very professional. Would highly recommend.


I worked with Jesse Footlik and he was great! He was so easy to work with, explained our options clearly, and had true heart for the matter. I could tell he cares about the people he works with, and searches for solutions that will fit best with their circumstances.


Tim and his team exude professionalism, timeliness, and have a unique dedication to client needs. It is a pleasure working with them. For estate planning, succession planning, or just a general factfinding conversation about what they may be able to do for you, there is no one better in the area.


Kerry Peck with Kyle Fahey did outstanding work helping settle a difficult, complicated, contentious and sensitive personal matter. They were available by phone, email and text at all times during the day, night and weekend to quickly resolve the matter with the best outcome possible for their client. Thank you!


I cannot say enough wonderful things about this firm. The professionalism, knowledge, skills, attention to details, and constant updates were above my expectations. And the bonus was having a better outcome than I could have imagined. Jesse & Nick managed an emotional and difficult situation with care and respect. They are a top-notch team with excellent customer service and have very fair and reasonable prices. I would not hesitate to use this firm for any of your needs.

–Debbie M.

Peck Ritchey did an excellent job of resolving a very difficult estate matter.

–Scott S., Barrington Hills, IL

Thank you so much for your consistent attention to our case this past year. We were fairly small potatoes, yet you actually ‘got back’ and stayed on it. There were times when the government seemed to drop the ball more than my little league outfield, but my attorney was there. I realize that you actually went beyond the scope; I truly do appreciate your work.

–Kirt G., Chicago, IL

My family is so grateful for the positive outcome in my mother’s guardianship trial that had divided our family. Tim Ritchey and the Peck Ritchey team were very professional and thorough in stepping up in an emergency situation and preparing for trial. Peck Ritchey provided us with the peace of mind that my mother will be cared for throughout the rest of her life.

–Kevin G. Chicago, IL

Peck Ritchey both represents us defending our funding decisions, but also represents the best in leadership and support for issues that can change the quality of life of older persons. We are grateful that we are represented by a group of thoughtful and skilled experts on the law, and great colleagues in making the law work for our older clientele.

–Jon L., Oak Park, IL

I was Legal Guardian and Executor for mother who had passed away 12 years ago. There were two wills. One my mom wrote and another an aunt forced her to change while she had dementia. My former attorney advised me to pay the surety bond for all these years. He lost the original will and the file and closed down his office. My brother who was on SSI was still living in my mother’s apartment, and the estate was left to my mother’s four children. One sister wanted us to buy her out. She was impossible. Peck Ritchey worked with sister’s attorney, helped my brother and closed the estate with all its complications in a few months. We were all concerned that this would turn into a legal mess but they were true professionals, kind, caring and answered all our questions. This the law firm you want on your side. I highly recommend them regarding estates, legal guardianships and drawing up wills.

–Ellie W., Chicago, IL
Accolades to Peck Ritchey (in particular, Ron Webb), for handling our estate issues professionally and expediently. We connected after attending a very informative presentation on estate planning, offered to retired educators. Everything was explained thoroughly, encouraging us to seek Ron Webb’s assistance and expertise. Thank you for a valuable experience and for giving us peace of mind for the future.
–Myrna B., Palos Heights, IL

Peck Ritchey was there with great advice when my family most needed it the most. They got my daughter’s guardianship done on time, and referred us to an expert social worker so we could get her cases through the complicated government systems. The social worker found that the trust put together by others were not in order. Peck Ritchey made new trust documents or amended existing trusts as needed and improved other existing documents. What I appreciate most is they explained it in plain English so I could understand what had to be and what has been done. I am grateful for everything they did and how they did it!

–Victor O., Chicago, IL

Very professional handling of my mother’s estate. Ron was there every step of the way and so were his paralegals I might add – from coming to Rush University when my mom was too sick to come to the office, and taking my phone calls, and always answering my questions, I can’t thank him enough! I am truly grateful for the wonderful experience with Peck Ritchey especially since it is already stressful enough when a loved one is ill. Thank you so much! We will be using your firm for our own estate planning in the very near future, I would definitely recommend Peck Ritchey.

–Brenda S., Crystal Lake, IL

Thank you so much for all of your work and time you spent in facilitating the purchase of our first home. I know we provided you with a short deadline and we appreciate both of you making it happen. The Escrow Officer commented on how seamless everything was for our close. We are extremely grateful for all of your effort. Thank you again!

–Steve T and Anna C

Kerry Peck and Jesse Footlik represented me in an extremely complex and litigious trust dispute involving numerous parties. After several years of litigation, the case was settled with a very successful outcome.

Kerry and his team of diligent attorneys help develop creative and detailed strategies that proved to be an excellent solution and produced the results I was hoping to achieve. During the duration of the lawsuit, communication with the attorneys was timely and thorough. Their passion and attention to detail was genuine and unwavering during the entire ordeal. I was very fortunate to have the Peck Ritchey team for representation and it was a great experience working with them. Knowing that the stakes were extremely high in the trust dispute Peck Ritchey, LLC was the right firm to handle a litigious case of this magnitude.

–Harvey C, Chicago

If you want a great experience with your estate planning needs, then you owe it to yourself to visit with Ron Webb at Peck Ritchey.

He explained all the intricacies of optimizing our estate planning needs in a knowledgeable and very friendly manner. It was truly a pleasure working with him and the staff at Peck Ritchey. We highly recommend their services.

–Larry and Judy F., Crystal Lake, IL

We would like to express our sincere gratitude to Kerry Peck and Jesse Footlik for the professional and courteous manner in which Peck Richtey have assisted us during the past couple years. You will never know how much it meant to us.

–Kathy S from Champaign

I was referred to Peck Ritchey by a former judge after he heard the problems I was having in my case with my first attorney. Kerry Peck and Tim Ritchey are experienced and professional litigators who helped turn my case around for me. I wish I would have gone to them first. They helped me in a contested will and trust matter and were exceptional. I would recommend them highly for any estate, will, or trust matter!

–J.F., Chicago

We were extremely impressed with Peck Ritchey’s representation of us in complex litigation involving contested deeds, powers of attorney, and hundreds of acres of family farmland. Kerry Peck and Jesse Footlik were steadfast in their commitment to winning our case, which ultimately resulted in a tremendous settlement for us. Although our case was located in “downstate” Illinois, Kerry and Jesse’s timely and thorough communication made us feel like their office was right next door. We could not be more pleased with their services and the outcome of our case.

–K.S and K.S., Edgar County, IL

When my Mom passed, I discovered that a family member had changed Mom’s will after she had dementia. For almost two years, I worked closely with Tim Ritchey and Kyle Fahey. They presented such a compelling case and clearly had no fear of taking it to trial, that the opposing counsel caved on the day of trial. With his outstanding negotiating skills, Tim was able to balance just the right amount of pressure, patience, and professionalism to give us a substantial advantage at the settlement table. In addition to the huge settlement we won, I am so grateful to Kyle and Tim for their thoughtful, compassionate and dedicated approach to such a sad family conflict.


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