Estate and Trust Litigation
There are many circumstances where an individual may need the assistance of a probate litigation attorney or trust litigation attorney. These include, but are not limited to, representation of an estate representative (executor or administrator) or trustee in a contested administration, representation of an heir/legatee or beneficiary in a probate estate or trust, presenting claims against an estate, and will and trust contests.
Representation as Estate Representative or Trustee
If you are named as an estate Executor in a Last Will and Testament or Trustee of a Trust, and the administration becomes contested, you will need an experienced probate litigator or trust litigator. As an estate representative or trustee, you are acting in a fiduciary role and there are certain requirements and considerations to take into account if a matter becomes contested.
At Dutton Casey & Mesoloras, PC, we also represent individuals who wish to become an estate administrator (in estates where there is no Will), when there are others with the same level of “preference” who also are seeking the role, under the Illinois Probate Act.
Protecting Your Interesting in a Trust or Estate
If you are an heir or named legatee in a probate estate or a named beneficiary in a trust, but are not appointed as the estate representative or trustee, you may benefit from representation. As an heir or legatee of an estate, you have certain rights under the Probate Act. Similarly, if you are a named beneficiary in a trust, you have certain rights under the Illinois Trust Code.
In these circumstances, our probate litigation lawyers and trust litigation lawyers can ensure your rights are protected and that you receive what you are entitled to from an estate or trust. If you are concerned about your inheritance, we can protect your interest.
Claims Against an Estate
Creditors seeking payment of amounts owed by an estate must file proper claims against the estate within a time frame allowed by Illinois law. We assist creditors to properly file their claims against an estate or trust and ensure they are paid what they are owed.
Will and Trust Contests
A Last Will and Testament or Trust may be challenged as invalid by an interested party. To successfully challenge and Last Will and Testament or Trust, an interested party must meet strict deadlines and certain standards of proof. If you are an estate representative or trustee and an interested party files a contest, it is your responsibility to defend a proceeding to contest the validity of the will or trust. We represent both interested parties and representatives of estates and trusts in will and trust contests.
Citations to Recover
If a representative of an estate discovers that the decedent was financially exploited during their lifetime or a person is improperly concealing estate assets, our probate litigation lawyers can file citations to discover and recover assets to recover assets on behalf of an estate.