Good Neighbors. Great Lawyers.

Estate Planning, Wills, & Elder Law

Recommended Lawyers:

| Robert P. Smyth | Maureen L. Kinney | Ellen M. Frantz | Gregory S. Bonney (Retired) | Sonja C. Davig | Brian G. Weber | Brandon J. Prinsen | Anthony R. Gingrasso | Ellen Atterbury | Katelyn K. Doyle |

Johns, Flaherty & Collins attorneys can be your best asset when it comes to planning for the future.

We assist clients in:

  • Durable financial powers of attorney
  • Durable powers of attorney for healthcare
  • Estate planning documents, such as trusts and income agreements
  • Wills

We also represent clients in estate and trust disputes and assist in planning for taxes, retirement and the succession of family-owned businesses.

Representative Matters

  • Medicare
  • Medicaid
  • Long-term care issues

A couple who had a child with a disability wanted to save for the child's future needs without impeding the child's access to Social Security benefits and other assistance. Working with Johns, Flaherty & Collins, they established a special irrevocable trust where they could deposit money regularly. When the time came for the child to live independently, the couple had enough in the trust to purchase a house for the child - a purchase which, if made by the child, would have rendered him ineligible for benefits. The child now rents the house from the trust and enjoys a nice, clean, safe living environment while still receiving assistance.

One Johns, Flaherty & Collins client had farm property in Illinois that she had inherited from her parents. Hoping to avoid probate - required in each state where property is owned - she worked with Johns, Flaherty & Collins to establish a limited liability corporation with her as sole owner. Now, when she passes, the LLC will continue and the new owners, her children, will be able to dispose of the land without going through probate in Illinois.

Johns, Flaherty & Collins helped a couple minimize estate taxes by forming an irrevocable life insurance trust. The trust then purchased a second-to-die policy on the couple so upon the second person's death, the policy proceeds will go into the trust which will then pay the beneficiaries. Because life insurance proceeds are not taxable, the heirs will avoid estate taxes on that inheritance. It's not uncommon for people to list beneficiaries on life insurance, retirement and bank accounts to allow them to bypass probate and go directly to children. But Johns, Flaherty & Collins helped another couple do the same with their home, thereby avoiding probate altogether.

Johns, Flaherty & Collins recently completed settlement of a wealthy client's complex estate using trust vehicles rather than probate of the estate. As a result, the estate was settled in less than one year and a fraction of the cost of a probate proceeding.

A disabled woman filing for Social Security benefits followed all the form submission instructions and was denied benefits at a subsequent hearing, a not-uncommon scenario. She came to Johns, Flaherty & Collins for help. Attorneys here helped her re-file the paperwork in the way the Social Security administration wants it presented. The woman was approved for benefits without even going to a hearing.