1305 D’Adrian Professional Park
Godfrey IL 62035

JOHN W. HOEFERT JR. Attorney at Law

General Practice of Law Concentrating in: Personal Injury, Estates, Wills and Estate Planning

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JOHN W. HOEFERT JR. Attorney at LawPersonal injury is a legal term for an injury to the body, mind or emotions, as opposed to an injury to property.

Estate planning is the process of anticipating and arranging for the disposal of an estate during a person's life. Estate planning can be used to eliminate uncertainties over the administration of a probate estate and to maximize the value of the estate by reducing taxes and other expenses. The ultimate goal of estate planning can be determined by the specific goals of the client, and may be as simple or complex as the client's needs dictate. Guardians are often designated for minor children and beneficiaries in incapacity.

The law of estate planning overlaps to some degree with elder law, which additionally includes other provisions such as long-term care.

The most common types of personal injury claims are road traffic accidents, accidents at work, tripping accidents, assault claims, accidents in the home, on a cruise ship, product defect accidents (product liability) and holiday accidents. The term personal injury also incorporates medical and dental accidents (which lead to numerous medical negligence claims every year) and conditions that are often classified as industrial disease cases, including asbestosis and peritoneal mesothelioma, chest diseases (e.g., emphysema, pneumoconiosis, silicosis, chronic bronchitis, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and chronic obstructive airways disease), vibration white finger, occupational deafness, occupational stress, contact dermititis, and repetitive strain injury cases.

Depending upon the intent or negligence of a responsible party, the injured party may be entitled to monetary compensation from that party through a settlement or a judgment. Attorneys often represent clients on a "contingent fee basis" in which the attorney's fee is a percentage of the plaintiff's eventual compensation, payable when the case is resolved, with no payment necessary if the case is unsuccessful. Typically, a Plaintiff attorney charges 1/3 of the proceeds recovered if a case is settled out of court or 40 percent if the matter proceeds to trial.

Probate is a process where 1) the decedent's purported will, if any, is entered in court, 2) after hearing evidence from the representative of the estate, the court decides if the will is valid, 3) a personal representative is appointed by the court as a fiduciary to close out the estate, 4) known and unknown creditors are notified (through direct notice or publication in the media) to file any claims against the estate, 5) claims are paid out (if funds remain) in the order or priority governed by state statute, 6) remaining funds are distributed to beneficiaries named in the will, or heirs if there is no will, and 7) the probate judge closes out the estate.

A will or testament is a legal declaration by which a person, the testator, names one or more persons to manage his or her estate and provides for the distribution of his or her property at death. For the devolution of property not disposed of by will, see inheritance and intestacy.

1305 D’Adrian Professional Park Godfrey IL 62035