Recent Blog Posts

Why a Title Search Is Essential in Every Real Estate Deal

 Posted on June 27, 2023 in Real Estate

Cook County Real Estate LawyerA title search involves investigating the history of a property’s ownership and legal status to ensure there is a clear and marketable title. It is a vital step in any real estate transaction and should never be overlooked. When engaging in any real estate transaction, whether buying or selling a property, conducting a thorough title search is paramount, providing essential information that protects all parties involved and ensures a smooth transfer of ownership.

Rightful Ownership

One primary purpose of a title search is to establish the rightful owner of the property. By examining public records, including deeds, mortgages, and liens, the title search uncovers any existing claims or encumbrances on the property. These can include unpaid taxes, outstanding mortgages, judgments, or other legal disputes. Identifying such issues in advance helps prevent costly surprises and potential legal battles in the future.

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What Are the Benefits of an LLC?

 Posted on June 06, 2023 in Business Law

Cook County Business Law AttorneyWhen you start a business, one of the most important decisions you will need to make is what business structure your company will have. Structuring a business as a Limited Liability Company (LLC) offers several advantages that make it a popular choice among entrepreneurs. Whether you are starting a small business or embarking on a new venture, considering the benefits of an LLC can help you make an informed decision. The following are some key advantages of structuring a business as an LLC. For more detailed information, contact Whitacre & Stefanczuk LTD for legal assistance.

Limited Liability Protection

One of the primary benefits of an LLC is the limited liability protection it provides to its owners, referred to as members. The personal assets of the members are generally protected from business debts and liabilities. In the event of legal claims or financial obligations, the members’ personal assets, such as homes or savings accounts, are typically shielded from being used to satisfy business-related liabilities.

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What Business Formation Is the Right One for Your Company?

 Posted on May 31, 2023 in Business Law

Cook County Business LawyerBusiness formations refer to the legal structures that entrepreneurs can choose when starting a business. These structures determine issues such as liability, taxation, ownership, and decision-making processes. The following is a brief overview of the four most common types of business structures. For more detailed information, contact Whitacre & Stefanczuk LTD.

Sole Proprietorship

A sole proprietorship is the simplest and most common type of business formation. In this structure, a single individual owns and operates the business. It offers ease of setup and allows the owner to have complete control over decision-making. However, the owner is personally liable for the business's debts and obligations.


Partnerships involve two or more people who share ownership and responsibilities. There are two main types of partnerships: general partnerships and limited partnerships. In a general partnership, all partners have equal authority and are jointly liable for the business's obligations. In a limited partnership, there are general partners who manage the business and limited partners who invest but have limited liability.

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What Types of Trusts Are Available for Your Estate Plan?

 Posted on May 15, 2023 in Estate Planning

Cook County Trusts LawyerThere are multiple estate planning tools available that can help ensure your family is protected when you are no longer here. One of the most common instruments used is trusts. Trusts allow individuals to transfer assets to their beneficiaries while avoiding probate and minimizing tax liabilities. There are several different types of trusts available, each with its own unique benefits and limitations. The following is a brief overview. For more detailed information, call our office to speak with a seasoned estate planning attorney.

Revocable Trust

A revocable trust, also known as a living trust, is a trust that can be amended or revoked during the lifetime of the grantor. This type of trust allows the grantor to maintain control over their assets while alive. Upon the death of the grantor, the assets are then turned over to the beneficiary of the trust, avoiding the probate process for those assets.

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Key Considerations for Your Partnership Agreement

 Posted on April 26, 2023 in Business Law

DuPage County Business Formation AttorneysA business partnership allows a company to benefit from the skills, experience, and unique perspectives of multiple people. Partnering with another person also allows you to share expenses and job responsibilities, promoting a healthier work-life balance.

However, partnerships are not without risk - especially if you do not have a solid partnership agreement in place. To give your company the best chances of long-term success and reduce the risk of conflict, make sure you have a well-written partnership agreement that includes details about decision-making authority, profits and distribution, ownership percentages, and how the partnership can be modified or dissolved.

Ownership and Capital Contributions 

Define the ownership percentages of each partner in your agreement. Each partner's share of ownership is usually proportionate to how much capital each partner has contributed (or will contribute) to the business, such as start-up costs or ongoing investments.

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Compelling Reasons to Set Up an Advance Directive ASAP

 Posted on April 13, 2023 in Estate Planning

DuPage County Estate Planning LawyerFor many people, estate planning and incapacitation planning are responsibilities that get put off as long as possible. Understandably, most people do not want to face their own mortality and plan for incapacitation or death. However, these responsibilities are extremely important and should not be procrastinated. A severe injury or illness can occur at any time to anyone.

Advance directives are legal documents that allow you to make decisions about how your medical and financial decision making will be handled if you cannot make the decisions yourself.

Types of Advance Directives

Advance directives allow you to remain in control of your personal affairs even if you are incapacitated by a medical condition. Using these documents, you will make decisions in advance so that there is no question as to what your wishes are, in the event that you cannot express the wishes yourself. Some of the most common advanced directives include:

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Understanding the Eviction Process in a Post-Covid Society

 Posted on March 17, 2023 in Real Estate

DuPage County Landord-Tenant Dispute LawyerLandlords wear many hats and juggle countless responsibilities. For many landlords and property owners, one of the worst aspects of the job is handling tenant evictions. It is an unpleasant process that nobody wants to face, and the global pandemic has presented landlords with even more challenges when it comes to evicting tenants.

Although most eviction moratoriums and other covid-related restrictions have been lifted by now, the pandemic changed the nature of the landlord-tenant relationship. Many tenants are set on doing everything they can to avoid meeting the terms of their lease agreements while remaining in their homes. If you are struggling to evict a tenant, it is important to understand the current eviction process in order to ensure that you are following the law and protecting your rights as a landlord.

Cook County, Illinois Eviction Process

Most evictions occur because a tenant is not paying rent or otherwise violated the lease. In Illinois, evictions are a judicial process. The first step is serving a notice to the tenant. If the eviction notice is based on failure to pay rent, the notice is a 5-day notice. If the tenant is in violation of the lease agreement, it is a 10-day notice. Month-to-month renters must be served with a Notice of Termination of Periodic Tenancy. The type of notice you will need to provide depends on many different factors, including the Illinois county where the rental property is located. This is why many landlords work with real estate lawyers to ensure they are following the current law correctly.

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Appealing a Property Tax Assessment of a Commercial Real Estate Property

 Posted on March 06, 2023 in Real Estate

DuPage County Commercial Real Estate LawyerPurchasing a commercial property represents an exciting opportunity for any investor. If you own commercial real estate, you know this firsthand. Whether you plan to use the commercial property yourself or lease it out to another party, you likely have ambitious plans for the future. Unfortunately, many commercial real estate investors find their plans derailed by excessive property tax obligations.

In this blog, we will discuss the legal options available to commercial real estate owners in this predicament. It may be possible to lower your tax burden by filing an appeal or taking advantage of certain tax incentives.

How to Appeal a Property Tax Assessment for a Commercial Property

An old saying states that the only things certain in life are death and taxes. Still, your tax bill should not be so demanding that it ruins your future ambitions. If you think a commercial property tax assessment is too high, you should consider filing an appeal with the local taxing authority. The exact process for appealing depends on your jurisdiction, but here are some general tips to keep in mind:

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Will My Children Automatically Inherit My Home? 

 Posted on February 27, 2023 in Estate Planning

cook county estate planning lawyerMany people put off conversations about estate planning for years, and understandably so. Conversations about end-of-life care, inheritance, and other sensitive topics around estate planning can be uncomfortable and sad for parents and children. Furthermore, many parents assume that if they do not write a will, their children will automatically inherit anything they have. If the family home is the single or most valuable possession they will pass on, they may assume the children will inherit it equally. 

Unfortunately, this is not always true. Although making an estate plan can bring up unpleasant thoughts and feelings, putting it off or not doing it at all is a mistake for the parents and the children. If distributing your property after you pass away is important to you, it is essential to create an estate plan reflecting your wishes. 

What Happens to a Home If There is No Will? 

If one partner in a married couple passes away and there is no will, what happens next will depend on whether the deceased partner has any living descendants. If there are no children, grandchildren, or great-grandchildren, the surviving spouse inherits the full property of the deceased spouse. If there are living descendants and no will, the surviving spouse receives half of the deceased spouse’s inheritance, and the first line of living descendants (usually the deceased spouse’s children) will divide the other share. If there is only one parent alive and that parent passes away, the children inherit everything. 

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An Overview of Short Sales in Illinois

 Posted on February 10, 2023 in Real Estate

Oak Brook residential real estate lawyerRising mortgage rates, property taxes, and other economic challenges mean that many homeowners are struggling to make monthly payments on their homes. This can put enormous pressure on a family and require them to make a decision about how to manage their spiraling mortgage debt fast. One option may be putting a house up for short sale. If you are interested in learning more about short sales, how they work, and how one might be helpful to you, read on and then contact an Illinois residential real estate attorney. 

What Is a Short Sale? 

A short sale is when a homeowner sells their house for less than they owe on their mortgage. The biggest benefit of a short sale is that the homeowner has a better chance of selling the home before it is repossessed in a foreclosure by the mortgage lender. If someone makes an offer on the home, the mortgage lender has to decide whether to accept the offer. 

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