Pros and Cons of Disclaiming Inherited Property in Illinois

  • Illinois Probate Law
pros and cons of disclaiming inherited property in Illinois | estate and probate legal group

When someone receives an inheritance, the first reaction is usually a joy. The second reaction is often; I can’t afford that! What if you receive an inheritance you don’t want or can’t afford to keep? Can you turn down an inheritance? The good news is, yes, you can turn down an inheritance by filing an Illinois Disclaimer of Interest – but should you? Here are some pros and cons of disclaiming inherited property in Illinois.

What Is An Illinois Disclaimer of Interest?

A beneficiary of property in Illinois can disclaim all or part of their interest in that property according to 755 ILCS 5/2-7(a). This document must:

  • be received no later than 9 months after the transfer is made or the date of death
  • be in writing
  • declared a disclaimer
  • signed by the disclaimant or a legally authorized representative
  • describe the disclaimed property

7 Pros and Cons of Disclaiming Inherited Property in Illinois

  1. You may want to disclaim the property so another heir, such as your child, can inherit the full property.
  2. The inherited property may be deeply in debt or even in bankruptcy.
  3. You may be a co-owner with other heirs who you do not get along with.
  4. It may be very expensive to pay the annual taxes on the property.
  5. The property may be more expensive to maintain than it is worth.


  1. If a trust is involved, federal tax law could make the disclaimer taxable if it is not carefully managed.
  2. You likely do not have control over who the property passes to after you disclaim it.

Do You Have Questions About Your Inheritance?

With expert guidance from the estate planning attorneys at Estate & Probate Legal Group in Illinois, we can answer your questions about your inheritance and give you peace of mind. Contact us today at 630-864-5835.

AREAS WE SERVE: DuPage, Kane, Lake and Will counties.