Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Illinois

My brother recently died and he was suppose to do a will I havent been able to find as of yet his ex who he wasnt married to but has three minor children with got a lawyer before his funeral and the lawyer text me that they are suing for everything house car motorcycle and all belongings that were in the house he was living in that was not his. I know my brother was not in his will leaving it to his children as he has been estranged from them he just recently started seeing his sons for a couple of hours after not seeing for like 5 years due to his ex not allowing him. He did pay all bills insurance and child support . what are my options. Thank you

Asked on 5/06/20, 1:37 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Virginia Prihoda Law Offices of Virginia Prihoda

If a person dies without a will, the laws of the state of Illinois provide that the persons entitled to be recognized as heirs to the financial estate are the spouse, if any, one-half, and the remaining half to the children. If your brother was unmarried on the date of his death, it's all to the minor children. However, the minors' shares for each of them will need to be managed until the children attain age 18 or 21 (depending on certain facts). The management will probably be by court order (guardianship). What are your options? To inherit, probably no chance. To influence management of your brother's estate for the benefit of his children--maybe some chance. You'd need to talk to a lawyer in your community to see if your interests are worth pursuing.

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Answered on 5/06/20, 1:54 pm
Henry Repay Law Offices of Henry Repay

I am sorry for your loss. I agree with the earlier answer. I would add, do a diligent search for the will. First, check with the Circuit Court Clerk for the county in which your brother lived to be sure that no will is on file. Next, contact any attorneys your brother may have dealt with in the past to inquire. If you are unsuccessful, you might even go as far as calling all area law firms.

I would note, if your intent is to protect the children, you may not be as far apart from the ex as you think unless she is entitled to child support. Also, there may be an issue of control of the funds going forward. In any event, hire a probate attorney regularly practicing in the county where your brother lived.

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Answered on 5/07/20, 4:47 am

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