Private Client, Trusts and Estates

BETTER PROTECTION When trust and hands-on attention meet
Your hard work and determination led you to where you are today. Protecting and passing your wealth and wisdom is critically important to you and future generations. And it’s our priority.

Our full-service Private Client, Trusts & Estates team advises on all your important interests, whether it’s your business, real estate, taxes or philanthropic endeavors. We are committed to working with you to preserve and grow your wealth and build a legacy that stands the test of time.

A Holistic View

Good counsel requires a holistic view of your unique circumstances. It starts with a comprehensive understanding of your personal and professional goals and values and determining how different factors, will impact your ability to accomplish them. Our sharp focus on both individual and business interests is highlighted by the personalized, creative solutions we bring to every scenario. This extends to the individual and philanthropic beneficiaries of your wealth as well as your business successors.

Our client base is just as diverse as their needs and goals are. We represent families, individuals, entrepreneurs, businesses, trustees, beneficiaries, not-for-profit entities and special needs community, among many others. Our clients benefit from the dedication and depth of experience among our team of more than 10 attorneys.

Trusts and Estates Attorney - Shannon Bauer, woman dresses in a black blazer
Shannon BauerAssociate
John Wiktor Attorney
John R. WiktorChair | Private Client, Trusts and Estates Group
Man dressed in a light pink dress shirt with a black suit jacket.
Jeffrey A. ZaludaPartner | Board of Directors
It's Estate Planning Awareness Month. Is Your Plan Up-To-Date?October 6, 2023

October is Estate Planning Awareness Month. This annual reminder offers the opportunity to review your estate planning and ensure it is up-to-date and accomplishes your goals. Funding your Revocable Trust Your estate planning is prepared. You signed it. Mission accomplished? Almost…. There is a very important step, called “trust funding” that often gets missed after executing a trust. If you…

Your Guide to the Second Half of 2023: Gift Giving & Tips for Parents with College StudentsAugust 9, 2023

As we find ourselves well into the latter half of the year, the thoughts of winter travel, holidays and the bustling activities of the upcoming months begin to occupy the minds of many. It is also an opportune moment to reflect on your estate plan and decide if any aspects require careful attention before the year's end, including contemplating annual…

Estate Planning Awareness Week 2022October 17, 2022

Why Estate Planning Awareness Week? In 2008, Congress designated the third week of October (October 17-23, 2022) as National Estate Planning Awareness Week as a reminder to the public of the importance of estate planning. Having a proper estate plan is important to ensure that you and your loved ones are taken care of. When done well, estate planning aims…

Prejudgment Freezing Orders in the US To Combat Evasive Debtors in the Current Pandemic EnvironmentJanuary 14, 2021

The 2021 pandemic environment is showing trends toward evasive debtors trying to protect their wealth by moving assets fluidly around the world as creditors evaluate the value of assets and the ability to recover claims and debts.

Trusts and Estates Checklist of Information to be MaintainedFebruary 27, 2020

The first step in implementing your estate planning is to prepare lists of personal and financial information.  These should include lists of assets, estate planning documents, personal information, important people and personal directives.  Once gathered and organized, keep the information up-to-date and stored in a safe place...

Letters of Wishes: An Administrative and Moral Headache in Disguise?February 4, 2020

Trustees may have difficulties determining whether to make distributions when the grantor’s intentions are unclear.

Recycle Your Charitable DollarsJune 6, 2014

For private foundations interested in a "return on investment" on the distribution of their foundation's charitable dollars (that is, a return beyond the satisfaction of doing good), Program Related Investments ("PRI's") are generally the tool of choice. A PRI can be counted as part of the foundation's required 5% annual distribution provided that the investment accomplishes one or more the foundation's charitable purposes, is not made to achieve a significant investment return, and is not used for lobbying or political campaigns...

Jennifer F. Kuzminski Presents "A Guide to Life, Legacy and Divorce: Taking Control of Life's Transitions" on MomLifeTVFebruary 27, 2024

Jennifer F. Kuzminski joins MomLifeTV for a webinar focused on navigating life's transitions. She provides insights on family law, estate planning and legacy to help you take control of life's changes.

Attorneys in Action: Keith H. Berk and John R. Wiktor Give Back with Northmoor Education FoundationFebruary 21, 2024

Northmoor Education Foundation awarded $90,000 of college scholarships to 15 outstanding Northmoor employees. The Northmoor Education Foundation (NEF) was founded in 2018 to assist Northmoor Country Club employees, caddies and their children who plan to continue their education in college or vocational school programs. Scholarships are offered each year for full-time or part-time study at accredited institutions of the student’s…

Congratulations to HMB Attorneys Named to 2023 Leading LawyersFebruary 21, 2023

Congratulations to Jeralyn H. Baran, Keith H. Berk, Aaron L.Hammer, Jeffrey H. Hechtman, James L. Jerue and Jeffrey A. Zaluda for being named 2023 Leading Lawyers! Only lawyers who are most often recommended by their peers and later approved by the Leading Lawyers Advisory Board are selected.

Jeffrey A. Zaluda Presents, “Creating Intelligent Philanthropic Legacies in any Economic Climate” hosted by FELNET – 11/16/22November 15, 2022

Have questions about charitable giving? Join HMB’s Jeffrey A. Zaluda and Scott Vender of Morgan Stanley for the Friends of ELNET’s upcoming seminar, “Creating Intelligent Philanthropic Legacies in any Economic Climate” on November 16th.

Alyssa J. Karpinski Presents, “Illinois Probate Process: In 7 Simple Steps” hosted by NBI – 12/30/22November 2, 2022

Alyssa Karpinski is presenting at the National Business Institute’s upcoming course, “Illinois Probate Process: In 7 Simple Steps” on December 30th. She will address creditor claims, discuss resolving disputes and explore how to navigate probate litigation.

HMB Welcomes Jennifer F. Kuzminski And Alyssa J. Karpinski To Its Private Client, Trusts And Estates GroupJuly 26, 2022

HMB is pleased to welcome Jennifer Kuzminski and Alyssa Karpinski to its Private Client, Trusts and Estates group.

Jeffrey A. Zaluda Presents a Webinar, "ESG: No Longer a Trend You Can Ignore" to the Northern Trust Institute Wealth Planning Symposium - 4/22/21February 9, 2021

4/22/21 6 credit hours for CLE, CPE and CFP offered. The Northern Trust Institute’s inaugural Wealth Planning Symposium will examine key themes transforming wealth planning from leading industry thought leaders. This two-day virtual conference will provide unique perspectives and actionable insights on how to embrace this moment and advise clients with a more collaborative, data-driven and purposeful approach. "ESG: No…

Client Success: HMB Represents Caption Access LLC in Sale to Australia-based Ai-MediaJanuary 8, 2021

Illinois-based CaptionAccess is a deaf-owned and managed company providing communication access services to the government, corporate and education sectors. CaptionAccess is strongly positioned in the education sector, providing a broad and complementary expansion of Ai-Media’s enterprise customer base in the region.

SLAT’s: An Old Idea with New UrgencyOctober 8, 2020

Client calls are coming in droves regarding the need to engage in estate planning if Joe Biden wins the White House and the Democrats have a majority in the Senate.  And for good reason. There is every reason to think that the currently high estate tax exemptions will be substantially reduced as part of a tax overhaul relatively early in…

Jeffrey A. Zaluda Honored with JCUA's 2020 Rabbi Robert J. Marx Social Justice AwardJuly 6, 2020

Each year, the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs honors an individual with the Rabbi Robert J. Marx Social Justice Award, recognizing their commitment to JCUA’s mission of fighting racism and poverty in partnership with Chicago’s diverse communities. This year on July 20, the award will be presented to Jeff Zaluda for his lifelong dedication to pursuing social justice and a…

John R. Wiktor Win Trial to Enforce $1M Oral Pledge to Non-Profit CongregationJuly 1, 2020

John R. Wiktor filed claims on behalf of a non-profit Congregation to enforce two oral pledges made by one of its prominent and beloved members, who died suddenly before fulfilling his pledges. The Congregation filed claims in the probate proceedings in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois asserting that its member made a $1 million dollar oral pledge towards…

John Wiktor will Discuss Legal Issues Relating to COVID-19 at the JourneyCare Virtual Town Hall - 5/28/20May 21, 2020

5/28/20 11:00AM - 12:00PM CT Please join John Wiktor, with President and CEO of JourneyCare, Kimberly Hobson and Greg Hummel of BCLP, LLP, for a virtual town hall to discuss legal issues and changes in the time of COVID-19. This is your opportunity to learn from industry leaders about estate planning tools and changes, tax law updates, and new employee/employer mandates…

Economic Downturn Plus Low Interest Rates Equals An Excellent Opportunity for Estate PlanningMay 12, 2020

While the world continues to adjust to the COVID-19 pandemic, the current interest rate environment creates excellent opportunities for advanced estate, income and creditor protection planning.  The following are eight tips/opportunities that should currently be considered in the current market environment: 1. Review Your Plan Before getting into advanced estate plan strategies, for clients with existing estate plans, now is…

An Estate Planning Check-up in Light of COVID-19March 27, 2020

As we hunker down during COVID-19, here are seven tips to make sure your estate plan is in good health: 1. Make Sure Your Basics Are Covered At a minimum, every adult should have a Will, Power of Attorney for Health Care, Power of Attorney for Property and HIPAA Designation. Parents of minor children should be certain their Wills include…

HMB Elevates David Machemer and Tim Rybicki to PartnerJanuary 8, 2020

Chicago, IL December 12, 2019 HMB Legal Counsel, a preeminent provider of legal services in Business and Finance, State and Local Tax, Trusts and Estates, Bankruptcy, Reorganization and Creditors' Rights, Real Estate and Litigation announced that three associate attorneys were elevated to partner. David W. Machemer David is a member of the firm's State and Local Tax (SALT) Group.  He…

New Year, New Trust LawDecember 16, 2019

New Beneficiary Notice Requirements For Trusts that Become Irrevocable After December 31, 2019 Effective January 1, 2020, the Illinois Trust Code (“ITC”) will replace the Illinois Trust and Trustees Act as the law governing Illinois trusts. With the adoption of the ITC, Illinois becomes the 34th state to adopt a form of the Uniform Trust Code. Most of the new…

Ken Goldstein, Jim Plucinsky & Joe Tamburello present "Small Business Tax Considerations"-Chicago Bar Foundation Justice for Entrepreneurs Project-10/31/19October 30, 2019

10/31/19 Chicago, IL Ken Goldstein, Jim Plucinsky and Joe Tamburello present an in-depth discussion of the tax considerations for small businesses.  Attendees will learn detailed information regarding tax compliance requirements based upon the choice of entity as well as tax planning and savings strategies for single-member LLCs, multi-member LLCs, partnerships, S corporations and C Corporations. The CBF Justice Entrepreneurs Project…

Jeff Zaluda presents "Some Trends in Philanthropy Impacting Large Publicly Supported Charities" - Jewish National Fund - 9/18/19September 6, 2019

09/18/19 Chicago, IL While Americans remain the most generous and philanthropic people in the world, the landscape for giving is changing at an accelerated rate. Jeff Zaluda discusses how Millennial and generational subgroups have dramatically impacted the manner in which philanthropy is carried out. He will examine some of the reasons behind the changing landscape and ways in which donors…

Attorneys in Action: John Wiktor Gives Back as Bethesda Board MemberAugust 23, 2019

On 8/15/19, John Wiktor, Chair of HMB's Private Client, Trusts & Estates Group and pictured above in the blue shirt, joined the groundbreaking ceremony for Bethesda Cornerstone Village, in Victoria, Minnesota. The community, one of the first of its kind in the United States, will provide an inclusive environment for active seniors and independent adults with disabilities. John is a Board…

Collectors in Conversation: Charles Mottier with Richard M. HorwoodMay 4, 2017

Asian Art Council, Art Institute of Chicago, May 4, 2017 Mr. Horwood is a partner in the Trusts and Estates Group of Horwood Marcus & Berk Chartered and advises collectors regarding key issues such as authentication; provenance; collection management; tax matters; disposition and charitable, museum, and family gifting. Mr. Mottier is a collector who, over the course of three decades,…

The Best Laid Plans: Avoiding Administrative and Judicial Challenges, Chicago Bar Association, 5/3/17May 3, 2017

Two key takeaways from this presentation: The disclosure of information can be as useful of a risk management tool as any. A client who understands how a corporate fiduciary will interact with all parties will have a more positive experience.…

Investment Banker Customary FeesJune 14, 2010

In our previous two articles we walked you through the reasons to hire an investment banker for the sale of your middle market business (i.e. transaction valued between $25 million and $250 million) as well as typical terms for how the relationship will work. Now your attention turns to fees. Our experience is that terms vary among investment banking firms…

Investment Banking Customary TermsApril 14, 2010

In the first of our three part series we walked you through the process of deciding whether to hire an investment banker for your middle market business (i.e. transaction valued between $25 million and $250 million). So now that you have decided to sell your business, we will discuss customary investment banking terms in this article and will wrap up…

In Support of the Investment BankerDecember 14, 2009

So why do business owners want to hate investment bankers? Too often, it is based on cocktail party chatter. Have you ever heard, "the investment bankers added no value to the process? I already knew the buyer. We were competitors for years." Or, "the investment bankers wrote a nice book, but at the end of the day my lawyer and…

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