Probate: Upon the death of an individual, there are certain assets that must be transferred through the probate process to the heirs or beneficiaries of the decedent.  Probate is the procedure whereby a deceased individual’s property is transferred to those named in a will.  If a person dies without a will it means they died intestate and, in such circumstances, the property must be transferred according to the laws of the State.  However, if a will was created and is proven valid, the process can be more manageable or, at a minimum, will proceed according to the deceased’s wishes rather than the State law.  However, family members can still contest items left to certain people in the will, which can postpone the probate process for months at a time.

Proper estate planning can sometimes avoid this probate process.  Please review the Area of Practice Section entitled Wills, Trusts, and Estate Planning to learn more about how you can avoid the probate process.

If however, you find yourself in a situation where you require the assistance of an attorney to probate certain assets of an estate, Eckinger Law Offices, Ltd. has experience in the probate process to efficiently and effectively complete all aspects of the probate process, including estate and individual taxation issues.

Estate administration can be further burdened to the fact that survivors of the deceased are also going through the grieving process and can be vulnerable.  Recognizing this, our experienced attorneys can provide professional services and personal attention that guide the client through the probate process.  Our attorneys move the process along as fast as possible while still providing sufficient explanation and advise to those involved.

Guardianship: In some cases, a guardianship is required for a person who is not medically or legally competent to manage their financial affairs, medical treatment or living arrangements, such as incompetent adults and persons under age 18. Eckinger Law Offices, Ltd. provides legal representation to file and obtain guardianship through the Probate Court. We have also been appointed as legal guardian for those individuals that do not have an appropriate or convenient family member or friend to act as legal guardian. We can also assist a guardian that requires legal representation to obtain court approval to expend funds, file the inventory report and various other guardianship matters.