When determining beneficiaries’ designations and the receiving of assets in Lombard, it is important for you to understand that there are steps that you could take to exude a measure of control over who receives what. With the help of an attorney, you could ignore the order of priority set forth in intestacy laws and better plan for the future.

How Titling and Beneficiary Designations Impact the Distribution of Estate Assets

Titling and beneficiary designations could impact the distribution of assets from an estate because those assets that have those beneficiary designations pass outside of probate. They are passed directly from the financial institution to the named beneficiary. The same goes for assets that are titled jointly. The law of joint pendency dictates that when one of the joint owners dies, the title is immediately vested into the surviving joint owner. There is no probate required and there is no will required.

Even if the person has a will, and even if it disregards the intestacy statutes, if there are joint accounts or beneficiary designations, those assets go directly to those beneficiaries without regard for what is in the will or what is in the intestacy statutes. Beneficiary designations and joint titling of assets could have a significant impact on how a person’s estate is distributed. Because the impact on receiving assets in Lombard is so significant, looking to beneficiary designations with a lawyer could prove useful.

Defining Surviving Family in Lombard

The closeness that a person has to be to in familial relations to legally be considered a surviving family member in Lombard depends on whether or not there are children or descendants. The difference between an heir and a descendant is a descendant is someone who is in one’s direct bloodline, like children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. They descend directly from the decedent.

Other family that, in certain circumstances, could be heirs are the relatives of a decedent’s parents, like their parents’ brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, and cousins because everyone shares some blood. If there are descendants, those descendants, those children or grandchildren, are going to be the surviving family in terms of an intestate estate.

If there are no descendants, like someone who was never married and never had any kids, siblings could be regarded as surviving family. If there are no siblings, then it could be nieces and nephews. If there is nothing below a decedent after they die, no children or grandchildren, then it goes up and out the branches of their family tree.

At What Point Does the City of Lombard Receive a Decedent’s Assets?

Lombard would receive the decedent’s assets only if there was nobody anywhere. It is extremely rare to have a situation whereby a person’s estate escheats to the state. Everyone has heirs. Even if they were never married, even if they have no kids, even if they had no siblings, and even if their parents and grandparents are not alive, everyone could trace a line. If they have the information, everyone could trace further back, up, and out the family tree. Everyone has an heir somewhere. If those people could not be found at all, then in those circumstances it winds up going to the State of Illinois. It is not common because with the internet, it is easier to find heirs.

In those rare situations in Illinois, all jurisdictions operate that way. If there are unknown heirs and it has to be deposited with the county treasure, eventually, if enough time passes, assets would go to the state.

Intestacy and Domestic Partnership

In Lombard, a domestic partnership is not regarded in the order of priority set out by intestacy laws. Illinois does not recognize common-law marriage. The State of Illinois only provides for a surviving spouse, which is someone who has a valid marriage to the decedent, or that person’s heirs, which is someone with blood relationship. There are no provisions for an unmarried domestic partner.

Let an Attorney in Lombard Help Designate Beneficiaries and Distribute Assets

There is a clear connection between designating beneficiaries and receiving assets in Lombard. Despite who you may wish to have assets from your estate in the future, there may be exceptions to your desires—specifically if your estate falls in line with intestacy laws. If you wish to retain a measure of control for the future of your estate, choose to work with an experienced lawyer.