If you have lost someone who was important to you, you may have been selected to present their will for probate. The Naperville courts are authorized to distribute assets according to a will. However, if the deceased did not leave a testamentary document, a tribunal could follow the laws of probate, and apportion the estate per statute.

You could have extensive responsibilities if you have been asked to serve as the representative of a loved one’s estate. A Naperville probate lawyer may be able to provide you with experienced guidance throughout the process.

Probate in Naperville

Probate in Naperville is subject to the Probate Act of 1975, which has been codified by the Illinois Compiled Statutes. The court in Naperville is authorized by statute to either probate a will or distribute assets through rules of intestate succession. Persons who have passed away without a testamentary document, such as a will, are referred to as decedents who have died intestate.

Probating a Will

Generally, the assets that are identified in a will may be distributed as directed by the decedent. Per 755 ILCS 5/4-13, any real and personal property that has been described in a valid testamentary document may be apportioned after the will has been admitted to probate.

In order to get a will accepted for probate, the executor must first file the document with the Naperville county clerk as soon as possible after the death of the decedent. Persons who deliberately hide or withhold a will for more than 30 days after the deceased has passed away could be subject to criminal charges.

As is explained in 755 ILCS 5/6-2, any person who would like to have the will admitted for probate must also file a petition with the Naperville court. If 30 days have passed since the filing of the will with the county clerk, a tribunal may begin to probate the document absent a petition for probate. An adept Naperville probate attorney may be able to submit paperwork on behalf of clients so that court deadlines may be met.

Intestate Distribution

Per 755 ILCS 5/4-14, if there is no last will and testament, the Naperville court may apportion the real and personal property of the deceased via intestate distribution. Moreover, even if there was a will, there could be additional assets left over, because they were not identified in the document.

Leftover property is called residue, and the court may award it by following the statutes regarding intestate apportionment. Generally, if the deceased leaves behind a spouse and children, those persons may receive the bulk of the assets, because there is no document indicating otherwise.

As has been described in 755 ILCS 5/2-1, if the decedent left no will, but they had a partner and children, one-half of the estate would be awarded to the spouse. The other half might be divided equally among the children. A capable probate lawyer in Naperville may be able to assist with cases involving a missing will or residue.

Call a Naperville Probate Attorney Today

If you need some guidance with the probate process, there are local attorneys who may be adept in this area of law. A Naperville probate lawyer may become a well-informed source of information for you.

If you need to discuss probate after the death of a loved one, call today to schedule a consultation. A skilled legal professional may be able to answer your questions and address any probate issues that have arisen.