Probate in Illinois is a legal proceeding that settles all legal issues related to a decedent’s estate. Probate can either be initiated by an executor who is nominated by the decedent in a Will, and appointed by the court to gather the decedent’s assets, to pay the decedent’s debts and final expenses, and to distribute the decedent’s property to those who are named in the Will, or who are otherwise entitled to receive the property by operation of law.

If the decedent did not have a Will at the time of his or her death, then a person can be appointed as an administrator, upon filing a petition with the court to do so. An administrator will perform much the same functions as an executor: gather assets, pay debts and final expenses, and distribute property to those who are entitled to receive it by law. Because the decedent did not leave a Will, the law of intestacy states who and how the administrator is to distribute property belonging to the decedent at the time of his or her death.

Probate proceedings can range from very simple administration to very complex. The reasons for how or why a Probate proceeding may be more complex are many and varied. Examples may include an unhappy heir, or child, who believes that he or she did not receive a fair share of a parent’s or other relative’s estate. Other issues may involve those who take unfair advantage of an elderly person before his or her death, and exerts undue influence over the elderly person so that he or she writes his or her Will in a manner that does not truly reflect their true intentions. Still other reasons may involve poor planning on the part of the decedent before his or her death.

The attorneys at Smith & Weer, P.C. have more than 35 years of handling Probate estates. Some of these Probates are of the more complex nature as mentioned above. The objective of Smith & Weer, P.C. is to expedite the handling of estate matters, to settle the estate, and to distribute the estate’s property to the proper beneficiaries in a timely and cost-effective way.

Call us today at (309) 347-4300 for a free, no-obligation consultation regarding your Probate matter. We look forward to hearing from you and to helping you in any way we can.

Peoria Probate Attorney

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