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Frequently Asked Questions ( FAQ )

What happens if someone dies without a will?

If someone dies without a will, Illinois laws called the "rules of intestate succession" apply. In Illinois, the intestate succession rules provide that all of the estate goes to the surviving spouse, if there are no children (or grandchildren). If there is a surviving spouse and children (or grandchildren), one-half goes to the spouse and one-half goes to the children. If there is no surviving spouse, but there are children, then all of the estate goes to the children.

 If there is no surviving wife or children, the estate goes to brothers and sisters and their descendants. If they don't exist, it goes to grandparents and their descendants. Call us For a full explanation of Illinois intestacy laws and how they might affect your situation.

 What does joint custody mean?

In the typical post-divorce arrangement, one ex-spouse will have custody of the child or children, and the other spouse has visitation rights. This means that the children live with the one parent, and then they stay with the other parent on, for example, alternating weekends. When the non-custodial parent lives out of town, the children might visit him or her on designated holidays or during parts of their summer vacation.

 Joint custody means that the two ex-spouses share legal custody of the children. In some cases, the children will rotate from parent to parent. In other cases, the children will live primarily with one parent, but the other parent plays an active role in their upbringing. Where both parents work, and they share school drop-offs and pick-ups, joint custody offers them more flexibility because either parent can sign school documents or grant sick-day permission. 

Do I have to give my ex-spouse visitation rights?

Yes, generally, unless you can establish to the court's satisfaction that your ex-spouse may flee with or harm the child.


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