Chicago Arbitration or Mediation Decedent’s Estate Litigation Attorneys
Losing a loved one is never easy. In addition to the obvious emotional turmoil that comes from knowing that you will not get to spend time with that person again, there are often a large number of tasks that are required to tie up various loose ends and deal with the decedent’s estate.
Unfortunately, unresolved emotional issues among family members or other beneficiaries can often lead to disputes, especially when there is a significant amount of property or money at stake. These conflicts may sometimes get so ugly that they seem destined to end in litigation.
However, many people want to do what they can to avoid this type of outcome, especially if they are interested in preserving their relationships. Fortunately, there are options that make it possible for individuals to meet halfway rather than spending untold amounts of time and money in courts. The experienced Chicago decedent’s estate litigation attorneys of Peck Ritchey, LLC can work to help you and your family reach a mutually beneficial outcome through arbitration or mediation.
Call us today at (855) 328-5787 for a free case evaluation, and we will help you understand how we can help you resolve your legal conflicts peacefully.
What Situations Lead to Estate Disputes?
There are many reasons why people end up in conflict with one another over a loved one’s estate. A few of the most common include:
- Failure of Intentionality – This is when the decedent has left a person out of their will or has given them what could be perceived as a lesser proportion of the estate. This often leads to the affected family member questioning the validity of the will.
- Perceived Inequity – This is a dispute that usually emerges among the decedent’s children. Even if the children have received equal proportions of the estate, unresolved issues among the children can lead to a belief that one or more of the children should be able to claim a greater amount than the others. This can be due to one of the children caring for the parent toward the end of their life and feeling as though this entitles them to a greater proportion of the estate.
- Wrongful Acts During or After a Decedent’s Lifetime – This usually involves some level of distrust in a beneficiary’s actions or intentions, such as suspicion about how they managed the decedent’s assets.
How Can Families Avoid Litigation?
Litigation for these kinds of matters can be both expensive and time-consuming. Furthermore, going to court can damage relationships among family members, sometimes beyond repair.
Fortunately, there are forms of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) that can help families and other relevant parties agree on a favorable outcome without needing to take one another to court. Two of the most common methods of ADR are arbitration and mediation.
What Is Arbitration?
Arbitration is a form of ADR that involves at least one neutral arbitrator. This person will be agreed upon by the conflicting parties, and the arbitrator will be responsible for making a decision about the case. They closely examine the evidence in the case and make a ruling that the parties must agree to follow.
In these ways, arbitration functions much like a court case. However, when compared to litigation, one major benefit of the arbitration process is that it is a private proceeding. This means that the proceeding and its records are closed to the public. Furthermore, arbitration often reaches a resolution much sooner than litigation does.
What Is Mediation?
Mediation is another form of ADR. In mediation, a neutral mediator negotiates with the parties to find a solution to the dispute. The major difference between mediation and arbitration is that a mediator does not make a judgment. Instead, they facilitate discussion between the family members and try to find a solution that everybody can agree to.
Mediators often employ creative techniques, coming up with solutions that both parties will find favorable. These types of solutions are usually not available in litigation. Mediation’s effectiveness also lies in the fact that it commonly results in compromise.
What Happens if ADR Is Not Successful?
Alternative dispute resolutions can be effective, but they are not successful in every case. The parties involved may go into the process with the best intentions, but a lack of trust may prevent one or more individuals from overcoming the negative opinions or feelings that led to the dispute in the first place.
If your arbitration or mediation efforts do not resolve in a way that is mutually beneficial for everyone involved, the likelihood of litigation increases significantly. If this happens, you will want to be sure to have an experienced attorney on your side who will fight for your best interests.
Call an Experienced Chicago Decedent’s Estate Litigation Attorney Today
If the loss of your loved one has resulted in conflict among people in your family, the attorneys of Peck Ritchey, LLC understand how challenging and heartbreaking this can be for everyone involved. Our lawyers have over 100 years of combined experience helping families work out their legal troubles, and we are committed to helping our clients attain the favorable resolution they are looking for.
If you are interested in resolving estate disputes among your family with an Alternative Dispute Resolution method such as arbitration or mediation, we are here to help. We see ourselves as partners in your ADR actions and can provide you with legal advice and service of the highest quality. At every step of your arbitration or mediation, we will give you a frank and forthright assessment of what your options are and what you should expect, with the goal of attaining an outcome that is mutually beneficial for you and your family.
In the event that your ADR efforts are unsuccessful and litigation becomes necessary, we will be ready to aggressively fight in your corner. We are unafraid to stand up to those who are treating you unfairly, and we will do all we can to resolve the matter in a way that is in line with your best interests.
Contact us today for a case evaluation. Call us at (855) 328-5787, and we will be happy to give you our assessment of your legal options.