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When Is Probate Required in Illinois

Prior to the death of a loved one few people have any familiarity with the Illinois probate process. In fact, most people I speak to have never been to court before – many have never even spoken to a lawyer. For those that have heard of probate, what they have heard isn’t good…. Read more →

Who Inherits If No Will in Illinois

In my experience a very low percentage of people bother to execute a will before their death and this low rate of estate planning is even more prevalent among people who die at a young age or unexpectedly. Because of this, people commonly ask, who inherits if no will in Illinois. This article… Read more →

How to Terminate a Month-To-Month Lease in Chicago

Having handled hundreds of security deposit disputes in Chicago, a common question I address is how to terminate a month-to-month lease in Chicago. Month-to-month leases come in two primary forms: Oral leases that were month-to-month at the outset; and Written leases that expire and the tenant continues to live in the unit and… Read more →

How to Retrieve a Will from a Safety Deposit Box in Illinois

When a close family member dies, one of the many tasks faced by his or her heirs is searching for, and locating, a will. In many cases the decedent (person who died) locks their will in a safety deposit box thinking that it is the best place for important documents. Historically, the people… Read more →

How Much Does Probate Cost in Illinois?

Losing a loved one is difficult. In addition to the emotional impact of the loss, there is often a lot of transactional work that must be done to wrap up the decedent’s affairs. The formal administration of a decedent’s estate in Illinois is called probate. Probate certainly gets a bad reputation in the… Read more →

Farmer Not At Fault For Reduced Visibility

Property owners owe certain duties to people who use their property with their permission. In Farrell v. Farrell the Third District Court of Appeals was asked to decide whether a landowner should be responsible for an accident allegedly cased, at least in part, by mature corn blocking the visibility of children riding dirt bikes and… Read more →

Illinois Security Deposit Law Less Than 5 Units

I am commonly asked about Illinois security deposit law when there are less than 5 units in the building. This question arises often because the Illinois Security Deposit Return Act only covers buildings of 5 units or more. The answer to this question is complicated and largely depends on where you live and what… Read more →

Is a Dog Owner at Fault When Their Dog Is on the Road?

Owning a dog can bring a lot of joy, but ownership also comes with a great deal of responsibility. Everyone knows that dog owners are responsible for dog bites – but is an owner responsible for other injuries caused by their dog? In this article, we look at a situation where a motorcyclist… Read more →

Avoiding Rental Scams

Rental scams are as old as the landlord-tenant relationship. Historically the most common scam was landlords keeping tenants’ security deposits, often with impunity. Laws like the Chicago Residential Landlord and Tenant Ordnance have curbed these practices so thieves have evolved. Since the world has gotten smaller, technology more wide-spread, and landlord-tenant relationships more anonymous, the opportunity for… Read more →

How Long Do Chicago Landlords Have To Return A Security Deposit

Almost every day we are asked how long a landlord has to return a security deposit in Chicago. The short answer is: usually 45 days after the tenant moves out. However, this is not the case in properties not subject to either our local law the Residential Landlord and Tenant Ordnance (“RLTO”) or the state-wide… Read more →

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