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IL estate planning lawyerCaring for a loved one with special needs requires careful financial and estate planning. Special needs trust is one powerful tool that can provide peace of mind for families. This legal arrangement helps protect the financial security of individuals with disabilities, ensuring they receive the necessary support while preserving eligibility for government assistance programs. If you have a family member with special needs and are looking to protect their financial future, contact an estate planning attorney to begin the process of setting up a special needs trust. 

Here Are Three Reasons Why Special Needs Trusts Are Important 

  1. Preserving eligibility for government benefits - One of the most significant advantages of an Illinois special needs trust is that it allows individuals with disabilities to maintain eligibility for government assistance programs, such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid. These programs often have strict income and asset limits, which, if exceeded, can result in the loss of critical benefits. By placing funds in a special needs trust, the assets are not considered as the beneficiary’s own, thus safeguarding their eligibility for these essential programs. 
  2. Ensuring a lifetime of financial support – A special needs trust provides a lifetime of financial security for your loved one with special needs. The trust can be designed to supplement government benefits by covering additional expenses, such as medical care, therapy, education, transportation, and recreational activities. This ensures that your loved one’s quality of life is not compromised due to limited financial resources. Moreover, the trust can be managed by a trustee, who will distribute the funds according to your specific instructions, ensuring that your loved one’s needs are met even when you are no longer able to provide support. 
  3. Protecting inheritance and family assets – A special needs trust also safeguards the inheritance and family assets intended for the individual with special needs. Without proper planning, a direct inheritance may disqualify your loved one from government benefits or lead to misuse of funds. By establishing a trust, you can designate how the funds should be used and who will manage them, ensuring that your loved one receives the necessary support and that the assets are protected from creditors, lawsuits, and potential financial exploitation. 

Contact a Wheaton, IL Estate Planning Lawyer

For legal representation in creating a special needs trust for a loved one, contact the experienced DuPage County estate planning attorneys with A. Traub & Associates. Call 630-426-0196 for a private consultation. 


DuPage County estate planning lawyerIt is generally considered a great honor to be named as a beneficiary of someone’s will or trust. It demonstrates that someone cared enough about you to ensure you were included in their estate plan. In many cases, beneficiaries receive the benefits they are entitled to according to the will or trust of the deceased without any issues or complications. However, in other cases, numerous sources of frustration can arise as the process of receiving your benefits plays out. If you are a beneficiary concerned with the course of the estate administration and probate process, contact a knowledgeable attorney who will ensure your rights remain protected and that you receive the benefits you are entitled to.

Improper Estate Administration

When someone is named as a beneficiary, they are tasked with relying on the executor chosen by the deceased to take care of issues relating to their estate. Usually, the deceased selected the executor because they believed the person would be up to the task. However, this is only sometimes the case. In many cases, an executor may be overly busy, not aware of the gravity of the situation, or perhaps they wish to take advantage of the process. In any event, inadequate estate administration is a common reason why a beneficiary may want to consult with a lawyer. 

Contesting Documents

Sometimes, a beneficiary may feel the need to dispute the legitimacy of a document such as a will or another estate planning document. For example, suppose the loved one who named you beneficiary assured you of specific considerations in their will. But, during the probate process, new estate planning documents are discovered that suspiciously exclude you or make other changes you may have reason to believe are unlawful. Suppose you believe the deceased was unfairly influenced or the documents do not represent their wishes. In that case, a lawyer can assist you in challenging the documents in question so that your rightful position as a beneficiary is respected.


DuPage County estate planning lawyerMore likely than not that you have heard of a will. In case you need a refresher, a will is a legal document that serves as the foundation of an estate plan. In addition, the document acts as a road map and guide for allocating someone's assets and property after they pass away. Finally, creating a will is an important step that grants someone’s  family security and peace of mind.

So, you may be wondering, what is a living will? Essentially, a living will is a written document that functions as an advanced medical directive, which allows you, while you are still alive, to make specific decisions regarding what medical treatment you would like to receive if you become incapable of making such choices for yourself in the future. You may know other medical directives, like do-not-resuscitate orders and mental health treatment declarations. If you are interested in creating a living will, consider contacting an experienced living will attorney who can help you or a loved one navigate this sensitive time with the utmost compassion and knowledge of the best procedures moving forward. 

Determining Your Wishes for the Living Will

When drafting a living will, a critical issue is your values and what you consider an acceptable quality of life. Is there any circumstance where you would feel life is not worth living? Are you someone who would like their life extended in any situation? Or would you only want treatment in case a cure is possible? These are questions to ask yourself as you address possible end-of-life choices in your living will. 


DuPage County estate planning lawyerWhen planning for the future, there is no greater gift to grant a loved one than security and peace of mind. Questions like, “What will happen when I die?” or “Will my family be secure if something were to happen to me?” can be overwhelming but essential questions one must ask oneself. Building an estate plan that fits your and your family's needs is a critical step in ensuring that your family will be protected no matter what life throws at you. In addition, wills and trusts are excellent ways to grant yourself and your family the assurance that your family will be taken care of adequately in case of the unexpected. 

What is a Will, And What Does It Include? 

Essentially, a will is a legal document that serves as the foundation of an estate plan. This document organizes the allocation of a person's assets, property, and more after passing away. A will is customized to fit your family's financial and familial circumstances. While a lawyer is not required to make a will in Illinois, it is wise to hire a lawyer for the will-making process to ensure the document is legally binding and will hold up in a court of law against any legal challenges. 

Under Illinois law, every will must be in writing. However, when drafting a will, there are specific provisions that you may include. These include: 


IL estate planning lawyerResponsible adults of every age and wealth level can benefit from setting up an estate plan while they are sure of their wishes and sound mind. While the end of life is rarely a pleasant thing to contemplate, people are often surprised at the peace of mind they get when they know their wishes will be respected and their family members are protected.

Unfortunately, an unexpected death may have left your loved one unable to create an estate plan, leaving you - the executor or beneficiary - trying to determine what to do. If you are responsible for managing the estate of a deceased person (the “decedent”), consider meeting with an Illinois estate planning attorney to find out whether a small estate affidavit could benefit you.

Small Estate Affidavit in Illinois

When someone dies without an estate plan, their property must go through the Illinois probate process. This can be long, difficult, and expensive, to say nothing of the emotional burden of managing an unplanned estate after the loss of a loved one.

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