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I’ve been involved in a accident…What happens now?

I’ve been involved in a accident…what happens now?

When involved in an accident your well-being is most the important aspect and we will fight to ensure your physical and emotional injuries are compensated. A personal injury accident can result in any of the following injuries:

• Loss of income (current or future income)
• Permanent or temporary physical impairment
• Decreased quality of life
• Overall pain and suffering

Do I have a case?
you should begin by asking yourself three basic questions: First, did you suffer a personal injury and not just property damage? Second, were your injuries caused by the negligence of another person or entity? Finally, do you have recoverable damages? If the answer to all three questions is “yes,” you may be able to obtain financial compensation for your injuries by bringing a personal injury lawsuit

Here’s some basic DO’s and DON’Ts when

dealing with a personal injury situation.

DO…..

1. Report your accident as soon as possible.

2. Seek medical attention for any injuries.

3. Gather as much information as you can about the accident.

4. Contact a personal injury attorney .

DON’T…..

1. Volunteer information to your insurance company regarding your claim.

2. Give your insurance company any recorded statement without talking to your Attorney first.

3. Admit fault.

4. Negotiate directly with the other driver.

5. DON’T accept or sign any settlements from any insurance companies before speaking to an attorney.

Contact our office when dealing with a personal injury matter

 

(773) 721-3333.

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Guidelines for having “The Talk” about Estate Planning

 

Guidelines for having “The Talk” with your parents about Estate Planning

Have you had “THE TALK” with your parents about their estate plans? If not, don’t worry you’re not alone. 34% of parents haven’t had a detailed conversation with their adult children about their living expenses in retirement 43% of parents said they haven’t had detailed discussions about their long-term-care plans, according to a survey of 221 parents (age 55+) and their adult children, conducted by Fidelity Investments. Here’s some questions to ask first when talking to your family.

1. Have you done any Estate Planning thus far? – Ask this question first, you might be surprised by the answer, many parents have started the process but need guidance completing it. This provides a great head start if some documents have already been drafted. You can now steer the conversation towards updating and amending them.

2. If you haven’t started Estate Planning yet, what do you have in mind? – Make it clear from the beginning your intentions are only to help and care for your parents. Make it clear they still have control over their own decisions.

3. Have you considered contacting an estate planning Attorney? – You can do some research on this before having the conversation with your parents. If might be helpful to even provide some insight on attorneys in the area you’ve sought out already.

4. What are your plans post retirement? – This question is crucial and determines how you move forward. Ask your parents what their plans are for the home and their finances, these things need to be discussed so documents can be drafted to protect their assets.

5. Who are you leaving your home to? Who will make financial and business decisions for you and where are the accounts located? – This will help determine what estate plans your parents need. A Land Trust for the home, and Powers of Attorney for them also. Depending on financials of the estate a Living Trust may be necessary also. The actual amounts in each account don’t need to be discussed or brought up only the locations of the accounts so Power of Attorney documents can be given to the proper institutions.

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Estate Planning Must Haves

 

Estate Planning Must Haves

 

Often times, people are adamant about using a Will instead of a Land Trust. The reasoning behind that is because many people simply don’t know what a Land Trust is, and the many advantages of placing their property in a Land Trust. We challenge you to educate yourself on Land Trusts and let us help you establish a proper estate plan.  Also, everyone needs Power of Attorney documents for healthcare and durable, The Law Offices of Theodore London includes BOTH Power of Attorney documents in the Estate Planning package.

 

  1. Land Trust – documentation used to simplify the transference of real estate upon one’s death. There are three important elements to a Land Trust:
  • The beneficial owner (the current owner(s) of the property)
  • The holder of the power of direction (the party with the power to direct the trustee to act)
  • The contingent beneficiary (the party who will inherit the property upon the owner’s death)

 

  1. Healthcare Power of Attorney – A Power of Attorney for Healthcare document allows a person, called the principal, to delegate another person, called the agent (a trusted friend or family member), the power to make decisions regarding healthcare that the principal is unable to make. The agent, who does not need to be an attorney, will speak for the principal and make decisions according to the principal’s wishes even when the principal is physically or mentally incapacitated.

 

  1. Durable (Property) Power of Attorney – A Power of Attorney for Property is a way for you to decide in advance who will handle, your financial affairs if you are not able to act on your own in the future. Executing this document will save your family from the burden of having to make financial decisions without knowing your wishes. It gives you (rather than for courts) more control over your life. For example, you may want to have the power to authorize real estate and stock transactions; to handle banking, tax or other types of business matters; to represent you in court; or to address other types of legal claims.

 

With these three documents, you can solidify your family’s future without the interruptions of probate court.

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Happy New Year!!!…have you done your estate planning yet?

If you haven’t…..we’re here to help!!!

  1. Land Trust – documentation used to simplify the transference of real estate upon one’s death. There are three important elements to a Land Trust:
  • The beneficial owner (the current owner(s) of the property)
  • The holder of the power of direction (the party with the power to direct the trustee to act)
  • The contingent beneficiary (the party who will inherit the property upon the owner’s death)
  1. Healthcare Power of Attorney – A Power of Attorney for Healthcare document allows a person, called the principal, to delegate another person, called the agent (a trusted friend or family member), the power to make decisions regarding healthcare that the principal is unable to make. The agent, who does not need to be an attorney, will speak for the principal and make decisions according to the principal’s wishes even when the principal is physically or mentally incapacitated.
  1. Durable (Property) Power of Attorney – A Power of Attorney for Property is a way for you to decide in advance who will handle, your financial affairs if you are not able to act on your own in the future. Executing this document will save your family from the burden of having to make financial decisions without knowing your wishes. It gives you (rather than for courts) more control over your life. For example, you may want to have the power to authorize real estate and stock transactions; to handle banking, tax or other types of business matters; to represent you in court; or to address other types of legal claims.

With these three documents, you can solidify your family’s future without the interruptions of probate court.

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We’re in The Chicago Defender!

📰EXTRA! EXTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT! 📰Check out this week’s The Chicago Defender to find out the good news about Estate Planning written by our office available everywhere TODAY! We will be contributing pertinent information on estate planning on a weekly basis! #thechicagodefender #estateplanningmatter 🗞

We will be contributing weekly, so stay tuned!!!

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What is a Living Trust? Do I need one?

 

What is a Living Trust? Do I need it?

What is a Living Trust? 

A Living Trust is a written legal document through which your assets are placed into a trust for your benefit during your lifetime and then transferred to designated beneficiaries at your death by your chosen representative, called a “Successor Trustee.” A Living Trust cannot be contested in court like a will, what’s written in the trust is much more secure.

 

What are the advantages? 

1. A living trust, AVOIDS probate, which often means a faster distribution of assets to your heirs—from months or years with a will down to weeks with a living trust. Your successor trustee will pay your debts and distribute your assets according to your instructions.

2. While a Living Trust is costlier to draft, it saves your estate thousands of dollars in probate court fees as the distribution of assets in the trust will NOT go through probate.

3. As a living trust is not made public, upon your death, your estate will be distributed in private. A will, on the other hand, is public record and so all transactions will be public as well.

 

Do I need a Living Trust?

Here’s a few things to consider when determining whether is Living Trust is right for you or not. A Living Trust is not mandatory when establishing an estate plan, but, if you’ve accumulated a substantial financial saving over a lifetime; a Living Trust is necessary. The first thing to consider is your financial standings, simply, the more money you have, the more you should protect it with a Living Trust.  Speak to your estate planning Attorney how you’d like the finances delegated.

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The Advantages of a Land Trust

 

Should I have a Land Trust OR Transfer On Death Instrument (TODI)?

Well, here are the similaries; both documents allow property to pass property from one person to another without probate.  AND THATS IT!

  1. The TODI must be recorded with the County Recorder of Deeds office before the owner passes, making the owners information public as well as the beneficiaries.  This is a major privacy concern and only a Land Trust can keep your personal information offline.  In the Land Trust,  the Trustee protects your privacy and will only disclose this information if required by law.
  2.  The TODI is also only applies to residential properties.  A Land Trust can be used for all types of properties including, but not limited to, residential, commercial, investment and industrial.
  3. In order to amend a TODI, the owner must follow a tedious process of re-drafting, and recording both a revocation of the previous TODI and a new TODI.  With a Land Trust, all you have to do it fill out a one page form and send it back to the title company.
  4. In order to establish or revoke a TODI, Power of Attorney documents cannot be used.  With a Land Trust, a Power of Attorney can be use to establish, amend or revoke a trust.
  5. A Land Trust Protects you from judgement liens, A TODI doesn’t protect you or your beneficiaries.

Land Trust is the way to go!

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Why You Want To Avoid Probate?

Probate is the legal process used to validate your will and settle your estate. It can be costly, take time, expose the details of your estate to public scrutiny, and freeze assets at a time when loved ones may need them most. Any assets that you can pass on without a will (by asset titling or naming beneficiaries) can go directly to heirs with no need to wait for the probate process.

Probate costs: 1%–6% of estate’s market value

Time required: 6–9 months minimum; can be 2 or more years on average.

So, what does this mean for my family?  This means…

1.)  Wasting time and money on probate court.

2.) Eliminating privacy – probate court is public record.

3.) Maximizes emotional stress on your family.

4.) Doesn’t protect from beneficiaries’ creditors, spouses, divorce proceedings, irresponsible spending and future death taxes.

5.) Allows the court to control inheritance of minor children. If you want to delegate specific amounts to money to children, your preferences are not considered. Everything is left for the courts to decide.

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Estate Planning in Chicago

Chicago Estate Planning

Estate PlanningDid you know that if you do not create your own estate plan, the state and IRS have created one for you?

Most people are completely unaware of this and their heirs are often surprised and disappointed at the consequences. Only through a carefully considered estate plan can you have complete control over who receives your legacy.

Proper estate planning is crucial for the protection of those you love.

We will work to ensure taxes do not consume too much of what you have accumulated over many years of hard work and that your financial legacy is passed on to your loved ones. Our goal is to ensure that your belongings are passed down to the people that you choose at the time you choose, and under the conditions that you choose – and not pursuant to the state’s plan.

Even if you have an existing estate plan, did you know that an incomplete or outdated plan could be worse than no plan at all? At the Ted London and Associates, we review many Chicago estate plans and often find their original objectives to be obsolete, and changed circumstances to be completely unaddressed. We will be happy to review yours.

A good Chicago estate plan is also a way of preserving your family’s legacy – protecting the assets you have left to your children or grandchildren from creditors, predators or, in some cases, from your children themselves. At the Morton Law Firm, we can create the proper type of plan that will protect your hard-earned assets from passing to anyone other than those you intended.

Why Plan Your Estate in Chicago

The knowledge that we will eventually die is one of the things that seems to distinguish humans from other living beings. At the same time, no one likes to dwell on the prospect of his or her own death. But if you postpone planning for your demise until it is too late, you run the risk that your intended beneficiaries — those you love the most — may not receive what you would want them to receive whether due to extra administration costs, unnecessary taxes or squabbling among your heirs.

This is why estate planning is so important, no matter how small your estate may be. It allows you, while you are still living, to ensure that your property will go to the people you want, in the way you want, and when you want. It permits you to save as much as possible on taxes, court costs and attorneys’ fees; and it affords the comfort that your loved ones can mourn your loss without being simultaneously burdened with unnecessary red tape and financial confusion.

All estate plans should include, at minimum, these important estate planning instruments: a durable power of attorney, a will, and a medical directive. The first is for managing your property during your life, in case you are ever unable to do so yourself. The second is for the management and distribution of your property after death. In addition, more and more, Americans also are using revocable (or “living”) trusts to avoid probate and to manage their estates both during their lives and after they’re gone.