DuPage County Guardianship Lawyer

Carol Stream probate and guardianship attorney

Attorneys for Probate and Guardianships of Minors or Disabled Adults in Wheaton and Winfield

In certain situations, a person other than a child's parent may provide care for the child and act in a parental role. Whether this occurs because of a parent's death, illness, incarceration, or other reasons, establishing legal guardianship for the child can ensure that a guardian will be able to make decisions for the child and provide the care they need. In some cases, a legal guardian may be needed to provide care for an adult who is disabled or has special needs. A skilled family law attorney can ensure that matters related to guardianship are addressed correctly.

The law firm of McSwain Nagle & Giese, P.C. can help you address a wide variety of legal issues related to parents, children, or other family members. With over 65 combined years of legal experience, we understand how the laws will affect your situation. In addition to helping establish guardianship for minors or disabled adults, we can provide representation in probate cases involving decedent's estates.

Types of Guardianship

A legal guardian may be appointed by the court to ensure that the needs of another person, known as a "ward," are met. The Illinois Probate Act (755 ILCS 5) specifies two different types of guardianship:

  • Guardianship of the person - These guardians will have the responsibility to provide for the ward's personal needs. For wards who are minor children, a guardian of the person will have custody of the child, and they will provide them with food, clothing, shelter, and education. For wards who are disabled adults, a guardian of the person must ensure that the ward's ongoing needs are met, including addressing their living situation, providing for their daily needs, and making sure they receive the proper medical care.
  • Guardianship of the estate - These guardians will be responsible for managing the property or assets owned by a ward. For wards who are minor children, this may include handling an inheritance or other assets owned by the ward, using these assets to provide for the ward's needs, and passing control of the assets to the ward once they have reached adulthood. For wards who are disabled adults, a guardian of the estate will manage the ward's financial affairs and use the assets owned by the ward and the public benefits the ward is eligible to receive to meet their ongoing needs.

Probate Court

Following a parent's death, a probate court may appoint a guardian for their children based on the terms of the parent's will. If the parent did not have a will, or if the person named in the will is unable to serve as a guardian, another person may be nominated and appointed as the child's guardian. In other situations where guardianship is needed for a child or disabled adult, parties may make an agreement to name a guardian and specify the guardian's rights and responsibilities, or a guardian may be nominated by an interested party, and the court will decide whether guardianship should be established.

Probate courts also address matters related to the disposition of a person's estate after their death. The executor named in a person's will or a person named as the personal representative of a decedent's estate will take an inventory of the deceased person's assets and distribute the assets to the person's heirs according to the terms of their will. If a person did not have a will, assets will be distributed according to Illinois' intestate succession laws. The executor or personal representative is required to provide the probate court with a full accounting of how the assets were distributed, as well as any other financial issues related to the disposition of the estate.

Contact Our Warrenville Probate Attorneys

At McSwain Nagle & Giese, P.C., we can help you establish guardianship for a minor child or disabled adult, or we can help you follow the right procedures as the executor or personal representative of a loved one's estate. Contact our office at 630-407-1200 to set up a free consultation and learn more about how we can assist with your case. We provide legal help with guardianship and probate cases in DuPage County, Will County, Kane County, Kendall County, and Cook County, including Naperville, Carol Stream, Wheaton, Winfield, Glendale Heights, Warrenville, and Glen Ellyn.

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