Northbrook Wills and Trusts Attorneys

Drafting Wills for Clients throughout Chicago’s North Shore

A carefully drafted will is essential to any thorough estate plan.  You want to ensure that your end-of-life needs are fulfilled and that your assets are distributed according to your wishes.  A well-drafted will can accomplish these things, along with several other legal objectives.  The knowledgeable Chicago-area wills attorneys at The Wochner Law Firm have been helping clients throughout the Chicago area, including Northbrook, Glenview, Deerfield, Highland Park, Lincolnshire, Evanston, Glencoe, Winnetka, Northfield, and other cities in Chicago’s northern suburbs, to execute carefully-drafted wills, trusts, and other estate planning documents.

What is a will?

A Will is a key component to every estate plan.  A will is a legal document that addresses a number of issues upon the individual’s death, including:

  • Choice of a personal representative/executor
  • Distribution of assets
  • Payment of debts
  • Designation of guardians for any minor children
  • Final wishes regarding funeral arrangements

By executing a carefully drafted will, you can also save your loved ones from the emotional turmoil of making difficult decisions and guesses regarding your end of life wishes.

What are the legal requirements for a will?

In order for a will to be valid and enforceable, Illinois law states that the individual must be at least 18 years of age and of sound mind and memory.   Illinois law also requires that the will be signed in the presence of at least two adult witnesses who are not beneficiaries under the will.

What happens if an individual dies without a will?

If an individual dies without a valid will, his or her estate administration and asset distribution will be dictated by Illinois law.  Without a valid will, a decedent’s debts are paid and assets distributed according to Illinois law, which may not be in accord with the decedent’s actual wishes. Without a valid will, moreover, the court probate process can be lengthy, time-consuming, and costly.  A well-drafted will, however, makes the probate process straightforward so that assets are distributed to the beneficiaries more efficiently and in keeping with the decedent’s objectives.

How Can The Wochner Law Firm help?  

For more than 35 years, the knowledgeable Illinois wills and trusts attorneys at The Wochner Law Firm have been helping clients obtain peace of mind by developing a thorough estate plan that includes the appropriate legal documents, such as a will, trust, and powers of attorney. Our founder, James A. Wochner, Esq., is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association and its Trusts and Estates section and of the American Association of Trust, Estate, and Elder Law Attorneys(AATEELA), in which he is a present Director and former past President.  Further, Mr. Wochner is a member of the Chicago Council on Planned Giving. Contact The Wochner Law Firm at (847) 272-7360 to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced Chicago-area wills and trusts attorneys.