Tom Benson’s daughter wants probate battle back in county court

U.S. District Judge David Ezra set a court date of May 21 to hear whether the fight over Tom Benson’s estate will remain in federal court or will be shifted back to a San Antonio probate court, the Times-Picayune reported on April 14.

The order was in light of a petition filed by Renee Benson, the daughter of the multi-billionaire sports teams owner, to move the case back to Bexar county probate court. Tom Benson’s lawyers initially moved the case out of the probate court and wanted it to stay in federal court.

Earlier this year, Tom Benson announced he was changing successors to his sports empire from his daughter and her two children, to his wife of 10 years, Gayle Benson. Renee Benson responded by filing petitions declaring her father incapable of running the family’s fortune.

Being embroiled in a probate dispute like this could threaten your financial future. As such, enlisting the help of a seasoned probate attorney is necessary to ensure that your rights will be taken care of at this crucial time. If you are facing probate issues in Chicago, seek the guidance of our team at Peck Ritchey, LLC, by calling (855) 328-5787 today.

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The pervasiveness of Alzheimer’s disease in America

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimer’s disease is considered the 6th leading cause of death in the country. In fact, the agency said the disease kills more people than prostate and breast cancer combined. 5 million Americans are estimated to be living with Alzheimer’s disease, which means an individual develops the disease every 67 seconds.

Women over 60 years of age are considered at highest risk of this disease. In fact, two-thirds of Alzheimer’s disease patients are women, and the likelihood of getting Alzheimer’s among women is twice as high as breast cancer.

The prevalence of Alzheimer’s in the country necessitates that everyone is prepared for this disease. If your loved one is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, our elder law attorneys at Peck Ritchey, LLC, know how important it is to secure the financial welfare of your loved ones and can discuss any legal issues surrounding the creation of a will, administration of an estate, and other subjects. Call us at (855) 328-5787 to get legal help today.

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Zsa Zsa Gabor’s daughter dies, left unclaimed

Zsa Zsa Gabor’s husband and conservator Frederic Prinz von Anhalt looks into the possibility of arranging the funeral of Zsa Zsa’s only daughter, Francesca Hilton, who recently died of a stroke or heart attack, according to a report by the Mail Online on January 8.

As Gabor’s court-appointed conservator, von Anhalt wants to know if he has the legal standing to take care of Hilton’s funeral and estate. Things had been very rough between Hilton and her stepfather von Anhalt. In 2012, Hilton requested for an independent conservatorship over her ailing mother. The court agreed but appointed von Anhalt as the temporary conservator of Gabor’s fortune.

Hilton, who died at 67 at a restaurant in West Hollywood, is Gabor’s daughter to multimillionaire hotel tycoon Conrad Hilton. Her body remained unclaimed in a Los Angeles hospital morgue.

At Peck Ritchey, LLC, we are prepared to assist Chicago residents in a wide range of estate, probate, trust, and guardianship matters. Call us at (855) 328-5787 to get legal help today.

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Estate Arguments: When Should You Contact a Probate Attorney?

Estate PlanningThere can be a myriad of factors the can cause a dispute over a deceased person’s estate.

Perhaps there is an issue with the will. Do you suspect it was signed under questionable circumstances, like after a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease? A Chicago probate attorney can investigate the legitimacy of the will to help ensure that the rightful beneficiaries obtain what was promised to them. The attorney will go to probate court to contest the will and then inspect if it is valid.

It takes a while to file the necessary paperwork, close accounts, and sell off property after an individual passes away. Estate administration is a time consuming and tedious process. Sometimes, unfortunately, the person responsible for handling the distribution of a deceased person’s property and assets may not be qualified; other times he may take money for himself instead of distributing it to the rightful beneficiaries. If you are an heir or beneficiary of a person who passed away, and suspect that something isn’t right, it would be well advised to consult with a Chicago probate attorney.

A probate attorney can challenge any aspect of a decedent’s estate. Probate lawyers can get the court to step in to supervise the administration of the estate. This would mean that an inventory would have to be made as well as an accounting of all the financial transactions. This will better allow the court to see if there are any improprieties or mistakes in handling the deceased person’s final accountings. This would also force the administrator to get permission from the court to do anything related to the estate; the administrator would have to get the court’s permission to sell off property, give away assets to beneficiaries or to close accounts.

After a loved one dies, it can often be a trying time for anybody close to that person. If you are questioning or arguing with family and friends about the deceased’s final wishes, then it’s time to connect with a Chicago probate attorney. Peck Ritchey, LLC’s attorneys will provide a free 30-minute phone consultation. Put your mind at ease and call (855) 328-5787.

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New Year’s Resolutions

With 2012 quickly coming to a close, people begin drafting their lists of New Year’s resolutions.  While many will join a gym or vow to stop smoking as a way to improve their lives, they will often overlook getting their legal paperwork in order.

It may not be a priority for all, but updating beneficiaries after major life events such as marriage, divorce, the birth of a child or the passing of a family member is an important thing to do.

Talk to an estate planning attorney about what is best for you and your family. A well thought out and properly prepared estate plan can help you save time and money.

Take inventory of your documents. Where are insurance policies, retirement paperwork and investment information saved? It’s critical to have this kind of information at hand in case of an emergency.

And while making legal decisions is often difficult, our team offers compassionate, informed, and dedicated service. Peck Ritchey, LLC staff counsels clients with up-to-the-minute advice that will protect their assets during their lifetime and for their family after the client’s death.

Peck Ritchey estate attorneys will meet at an office location that is most convenient for their clients; Peck Ritchey has office locations in Chicago, Northbrook, Orland Park and Skokie. The firm also provides legal services for DuPage County.

Take the opportunities over these next few months to examine how happy and healthy your older relatives’ lives really are. You can help avoid future emergencies by productively discussing their current and future living situations now.

Resolve to get your legal affairs in order and contact the attorneys at Peck Ritchey by calling (855) 328-5787 for a 30 minute no-cost consultation and start the New Year off right.

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Consulting With Chicago Estate Attorneys: 4 Tips That Can Help You Prepare For The Future

Young people tend to think they’re invincible and most don’t want to look too far into the future, reasoning that they have years to prepare for retirement or write a will. Unfortunately, unexpected circumstances can crop up at any time, and if you aren’t familiar with estate planning or wills, you may find yourself caught off guard. You may be years away from retirement, but understanding Chicago elder law issues will be crucial if your parents need assistance or you become incapacitated or pass away suddenly.

Don’t wait until it’s too late to prepare sufficiently for the future. An estate attorney in Chicago can help you prepare for the unexpected by assisting you in the preparation of an iron-clad will, guiding you through the legal ramifications of guardianship of your parents or elderly loved ones, and protecting your property, assets and children in the future.

Chicago Elder Law Consultations – The Time Is Now

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that having a Chicago will attorney isn’t relevant to your own family just because you’re young. Consulting with an elder law attorney can help you prepare for the future by giving you an understanding of all the legal issues involved in setting up an estate, writing a will, and stipulating guardians for your children if you pass away while they are minors.

You can also learn a great deal about issues surrounding becoming a legal guardian for loved ones who are already entering their twilight years. If you have a parent or parents who will need assistance in the near future, meeting with a Chicago will attorney or Chicago estate attorneys is the first step in preparing the legal documents you’ll need.

You should discuss the various documents you can use to outline a plan for your own care as you grow older. Among the most common reasons for consulting an elder law attorney before you’re retired are preparing a will that clearly outlines who inherits what from your estate, instituting a medical power of attorney that outlines which life saving measures you do and don’t want exercised on your behalf and putting someone you trust in charge of important decisions if you are incapacitated.

Why Now Is Better Than Later: Chicago Elder Law Issues Affect Your Life Today And Tomorrow

Most people don’t like to think about meeting with Chicago estate attorneys, particularly when they are young and have children who are still little. It’s not a comfortable thing to think about, and some people worry that preparing a will is tempting fate. It’s a serious mistake, however, to assume you have plenty of time; unexpected illness or death can leave your children  and  legacy unprotected if you don’t have a will, power of attorney or other estate planning documents in place.

Meeting with estate attorneys while you’re still young is an excellent way to ensure that your children are properly cared for both financially and physically. Establishing a good working rapport with Chicago will attorneys is one of the best steps you can take. Chicago elder law attorneys who prepare estate documents can help you put your finances into proper order in the event you are injured or pass away while your children are young. Chicago will attorneys who are already familiar with your financial situation and your final wishes will be better able to carry out those wishes and protect your heirs in court.

Dying without a will in place or without instructions for the care and placement of your minor children can lead to your children suffering additional financial and emotional burdens they should have never had to face. Chicago estate attorneys can minimize or avoid the probate process.

Estate Administration & Inheritances

In addition to helping you write up your own will or estate plan, Chicago estate attorneys can help you handle the complexities of administering a loved ones estate, should you be appointed executor, or representing you as a beneficiary of any inheritance that comes your way.

Will Contests

Disputes over wills arise every day. They can tear a family apart, particularly if your parents or grandparents died without a will, revised their will suddenly before their death or left behind an ambiguous, difficult to understand will. Scheduling a family meeting with a Chicago will attorney can help clarify inheritance issues and prevent feuds in the future so that your parents can rest easy, knowing you and your siblings will be properly provided for.

Now is the time to consult with a Chicago elder law attorney or Chicago estate attorneys. By having your entire family meet with an estate attorney, you can ensure that three generations of your family are protected and cared for when you or your parents pass away.

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Chicago Probate Attorneys Can Prevent Family Inheritance Feuds

There’s never a good time for family disputes, but after the death of a loved is certainly one of the worst times. Many families find the probate period extremely stressful, particularly when there is a disagreement over the terms of a will. Family members may be contesting the will because they feel they’ve been treated unfairly or because they honestly believe the estate isn’t being handled properly. Regardless of the reasons, a family feud can quickly escalate. If you’re handling an estate in Illinois, hiring Chicago probate attorneys to handle the estate is the best option when things get heated.

Are The Claims Real?

Chicago probate attorneys often see cases in which one child or grandchild threatens to contest a will immediately after it is read to the heirs. Often times this is simply a knee-jerk reaction based on their disappointment and the sorrow of losing someone they cared about or a feeling that the  estate was distributed unfairly and they deserve more. In these situations, Chicago probate attorneys may not be needed, although a consultation with an attorney is always a good idea.

How Much Is Being Disputed?

The larger the estate, the more often Chicago probate attorneys are needed. It’s simply human nature. Greed increases in proportion to the size of the inheritance, and many families who have gotten along fine for years will suddenly turn against each other if a significant amount of money or property is at stake. Individuals are more likely to put serious effort into contesting a will if they feel that they could end up with a significant amount of cash.

Who Is Handling The Probate Process?

If you are  designated as the executor of the will, you will be responsible for monitoring the division of assets. This is a difficult and sensitive situation and you may feel a bit overwhelmed. Hiring Chicago probate attorneys to walk you through the process is one way to protect yourself and see that the probate process is handled properly.

Chicago probate attorneys can advise you on proper legal procedures and make sure that all legal deadlines are met. Handling the probate process is an important responsibility, and you can be subject to legal consequences if you don’t handle the estate correctly. If there are any questions at all about the terms of the will, hiring Chicago probate attorneys will protect you as well as the estate. The cost of hiring probate attorneys is minimal compared to the peace of mind you’ll have knowing you have qualified legal representation.

Some disputes seem inconsequential at first, causing executors to delay in hiring probate attorneys. Unfortunately, even seemingly small disagreements can quickly escalate after the death of a loved one. Hiring probate attorneys before the situation becomes too difficult is the best course of action for everyone involved.

If you are administering the estate and have never handled a probate matter before, hiring probate attorneys can come as quite a relief. You won’t have to worry that you’ve missed a deadline or whether you’ve filed anything incorrectly. Of course, if you’ve already filed paperwork improperly or made other errors before you hire probate attorneys, the cost and time involved in settling the estate will increase. For this reason, it’s best to hire probate attorneys early on.

Hire Chicago Probate Attorneys If You Aren’t Confident Every Step Of The Way

It’s tempting to tell yourself that you can handle the estate, but even minor details can cause significant headaches during the probate process. You’re taking a risk every step of the way if you aren’t familiar with the legal process or there are questions about the will. Good Chicago probate attorneys will clarify each step in the process and smooth the way for you in court. If the will is contested in court, you’ll have the advantage of working with attorneys who are familiar with the estate and the court system.  Chicago probate court can be intimidating; having legal counsel you’re comfortable working with is important.

The death of someone you love is always stressful. You can reduce your stress level and avoid unpleasant complications by hiring probate attorneys at the beginning of the probate process.

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