$9,000,000.00 Estate Administration Settlement

We represented a surviving spouse who was scheduled to receive basically an income interest from her predeceased husband’s fortune while the husband’s substantial corporus was to be given to his distant relatives. After contested proceedings involving numerous parties and law firms in Illinois and Missouri the surviving spouse ended up with an estate in excess of $9,000,000.00 which she was then able to leave as she wished, to her side of the family and friends, including on a tax-free basis since she passed away in 2010, at time when there was no estate tax. If the surviving spouse had not contested matters timely, and if appropriate and aggressive action had not been taken immediately, she would have had relatively little to leave to her side of the family and friends upon her death.

$1,000,000.00 Recovery for Colorado Resident

We recovered in excess of $1,000,000.00 for a Colorado resident whose father passed away in Southern Illinois and whose trust was being managed by basically a rogue trustee. The trustee had prematurely helped themself to excessive trustee’s fees not to mention attempting to have the beneficiaries agree to take out unnecessary life insurance thereby resulting in additional profits to the trustee, who sold life insurance. Instead of our client receiving a lifetime monthly benefit of about $500.00 per month after lawsuits were filed, a settlement was reached whereby the trust was dissolved and our client walked away with an excess of $1,000,000.00 recovery.

Over $200,000.00 Recovered for Sisters

We represented sisters from South Carolina and New York in regard to a case involving their deceased mother, before she passed away, but at a time when her brother had power of attorney, unknowingly conveyed the family farm to her brother thereby depriving our clients in their share of the family farm upon the death of their mother pursuant to the estate plan of their mother.

$5,000,000.00 Missing from Estate

We represented a surviving spouse who had married a wealthy widower. Although a prenuptial agreement was entered into prior to the marriage, the widower made several changes to the estate planning documents benefitting his new wife and her children. There were also transfers of substantial assets from the husband to wife, many occurring within less than a year from the date of death of the widower. When the husband passed away, beneficiaries identified in his estate planning documents claimed there was in excess of over $5,000,000.00 missing in regard to which they were entitled to a substantial share. Issues were raised regarding fraud, undue influence, lack of mental capacity, duress and tortious interference with an expectancy. Our client prevailed and the complaining beneficiaries did not receive a favorable decision from the Court.

$75,000 Unpaid Child Support Recovery  

Our client had been married to an Anheuser Busch executive. There was a clause in the divorce settlement agreement that provided that our client was to receive child support with an additional bonus or override based on increases in income of her highly paid former spouse. Unknown and undisclosed to our client, her former spouse received substantial stock options after the divorce. Counsel for the former spouse claimed that the stock options were not income and therefore were not subject to the override or bonus for additional child support. We conducted discovery. We obtained copies of tax returns. The tax returns of the former spouse proved that he had considered same as income since they were identified as such on his tax returns. We recovered in excess of $75,000 for our client, possibly one of the largest back child support recoveries for an Edwardsville, Illinois law firm.

$585,000.00 Recovered in Divorce Case  

We represented a wife in a dissolution of marriage proceeding. Her husband was a successful business person in Southern Illinois, including in the agricultural and seed business. Tragic had struck our clients on many occasions before the divorce including losing three children in three separate accidents. Our client was not thinking straight. Her husband’s attorneys were attempting to coerce her into a meager settlement and divorce resolution, not in her best interests, but solely in the best interests of her husband because he had contacts with the right people. Once we agreed to become involved, we immediately disassociated ourselves from the settlement discussions that had transpired. After discovery, and after the intense settlement negotiations, our client received in excess of fifty percent (50%) of the marital estate, including because our client could not count on meaningful job opportunities in the future, and because her husband had a favorable financial future.

Wife Receives in excess of $3,000,000.00 in Divorce Case

We were involved in a divorce case where the wife received in excess of $3,000,000.00. The parties had been married for a number of years and the husband had extramarital affairs with several women. His wife had enough of it. The Judge took the position that the husband basically manipulated information and testimony in his best interests and that he lacked credibility. The wife could have settled for less. However, by proceeding with the matter through trial, the wife ended up with a substantially better result that had been offered by the husband.

Over $375,000.00 saved – Resolution Reached with the Internal Revenue Service

We were hired by a client who had previously paid in excess of $20,000.00 to a national tax representation firm that advertised on the media throughout the United States. Nothing had been accomplished that benefitted the client. After we took over, we immediately began communicating with the Internal Revenue Service, worked out a resolution, saved our client hundreds of thousands of dollars, kept our client in business and our client was grateful for the results obtained. We had recommended to our client that a new accountant be retained and we made a referral to a local accountant and tax return preparer. We filed suit against the national tax firm to recover substantial amounts on behalf of our client. We isolated the old corporation and then created a new limited liability company, to basically continue with the customers in regard to future work. This strategy saved our client in excess of $400,000.00. There was no criminal prosecution. We worked closely with our client for a period of time which included frequent office conferences, correspondence and telephone calls. At each step of the way our client was in contact with us regarding issues and concerns. We used a team approach which, in this case, meant that since more than one attorney was working on the file, someone was always available to respond to the concerns of the client and/or handle communications with the Internal Revenue Service. We treated the Internal Revenue Service with respect and responded to all telephone calls and inquiries. We explained to our client that the Internal Revenue Service has a job to do which is basically follow the law.

Over $425,000.00 Recovered from Phony Heir and Disqualified Administrator

We were hired by clients from the Centralia and Salem areas of Marion County in regard to a disputed estate. There was a person, who had retained counsel, that was claiming that he was the only heir that should receive anything from an estate in excess of $400,000. Not only that, the same person was serving as Administrator and neither he nor his attorney advised the Court that because of an adoption decades ago he was no longer an heir, was not entitled to serve as administrator and was not entitled to any proceeds from the estate. After Court proceedings and various pleadings were filed he was removed from office and his attorney discharged. If our clients had not hired counsel they would have been none the wiser and would have lost everything and no one would have known what occurred, except possibly the person was administering the estate that turned out not to be an heir and/or his attorney. With the tax-free recoveries received by our clients, they were able to pay off debts, take care of education expenses for their children and had savings for their retirement.

Dispute Involving $480,000.00 of Farmland

We prepared an estate plan for an elderly farming couple who wished to favor a child who had remained at and worked for the farm while the other children moved and/or had different careers. From a financial standpoint, some of the other children were not in agreement with the testamentary wishes of the parents. The parents were of sound and disposing mind and memory and knew what they were doing. We explained to all that even though the parents wished to favor a certain child that was their decision.

$150,000.00 Family Farm Saved

A client contacted us for his mother who had not paid real estate tax bills in regard to the family farm for many years. It was unintentional and the elderly mother had some medical issues. After filing suit, we were able to work out a settlement that restored the family farm, worth in excess of $150,000.00 to the family.

$300,000.00 Recovered for Beneficiary to Trust

We represented an out-of-state client in regard to a trust contest in St. Clair County, Illinois. After a period of litigation, including our law firm filing a motion for summary judgment claiming that there were no issues of material fact and that our client was entitled to distribution, an Order was entered by the Court and we recovered in excess of $300,000.00 for our client. Our client was ecstatic!

$580,000.00 Traffic Accident Settlement

We represented clients who recovered an excess of $580,000.00 in regard to a traffic accident. A pizza delivery business was negligent in basically forcing its drivers to hustle from store to store. There was an accident and our clients, a mother and daughter, sustained serious injuries. Without a trial, we were able to negotiate a settlement for over $580,000.00 and the expectations of our clients were succeeded.

$200,000.00 Saved from Filing an Appeal to U.S. Tax Court

We were hired by a client from Boca Raton, Florida who had a tax issue with a St. Louis tax attorney who withdrew from the case. We took over and worked out a resolution with the Internal Revenue Service whereby our client saved in excess of $200,000.00.

$80,000.00 Transfer Set Aside, Breach of Fiduciary Duties, Contested Guardianship Proceedings

We were involved in a case where an elderly person transferred $80,000.00 to his long-time friends. He had previously transferred a farm to a tenant farmer. He did not have a wife and he had no children. The recipients of the basically $80,000.00 transfer were considered by him to be his children, even though they were not blood relatives.

$500,000.00 Estate Dispute, Person Claiming to be Heir  was Denied Recovery

We were contacted by a group of relatives that hired us in regard to investigating the administration of an estate. It turned out that the person in charge, acting as Administrator, was not a beneficiary or an heir, including because he had lost rights to inherit by virtue of an adoption that occurred decades before the death of the decedent, and he should have been serving as Administrator. After this was discovered, the Court discharged the Administrator and one of our clients was placed in charge of the estate and our clients received an inheritance in excess of $500,000.00.

We prepared an estate plan for an elderly farming couple who wished to favor a child who had remained at and worked for the farm while the other children moved and/or had different careers. From a financial standpoint, some of the other children were not in agreement with the testamentary wishes of the parents. The parents were of sound and disposing mind and memory and knew what they were doing. We explained to all that even though the parents wished to favor a certain child that was their decision.