1 mile west of the Chicago Premium Outlet Mall (800) 810 3100
DLaw_headshot-2015Law Elder Law is proud to announce that Diana M. Law has been chosen by Chicago Daily Law Bulletin and Chicago Lawyer as one of 2015’s “40 Under 40”. Diana was chosen from more than 1000 nominations for attorneys throughout Illinois.  Among the criteria for the award is intelligence, passion, success in the office, a desire to help community and a willingness to work hard at one of the country’s most important professions. Here’s what Chicago Daily Law Bulletin had to say about Diana: “Dedicated.  That’s the word that Diana Law’s colleagues use most often when describing this young elder law counselor.  Law, a partner with the Aurora law firm of Law Elder Law, has earned the respect of her peers, her clients and her community.  This isn’t surprising.  Law knows the ins and outs of elder law.  Just as importantly, she is intensely dedicated to her clients, working long hours to help them resolve their most difficult elder law issues.” Congratulations Diana!

  By Rick Law of the Estate Planning Center at Law Elder Law. Conveniently located Just west of the Chicago Premium Outlet Mall. Law Elder Law is pleased to announce our new partner, Zach Hesselbaum, J.D., LL.M. Taxation. Zach’s favorite things, mentioned here according to their priority, include spending time with his wife, Kelly, who works as a school social worker in Bloomingdale, Illinois. Together, Kelly and Zach have an adorable toddler named Rockne. Zach is also a sports enthusiast, and specifically a fan of the Chicago White Sox and Dallas Cowboys. In addition, he loves getting to know people and conversing with them. He says, “I love talking to people and getting to know them! I like to be a ‘connector’ — I search out ways to help people through connecting them to others I have met.” The only thing that really bugs Zach is losing, because he is a naturally competitive person. Zach’s other pastimes include attending sports events of any kind, collecting sports memorabilia, and spending time with friends. Zach and Kelly recently moved to Wheaton, Illinois from Chicago. While they often still go “downtown,” Zach and Kelly are getting to know the rest of the Chicago Metro area as well. Zach is a person of integrity, perseverance, and goodwill. He has been nurtured by three very important people: his mother Judi, his stepfather Phil, and his grandfather Jim. He says, “My mother, Judi, my life professor, has instilled in me an incredible work ethic with a drive towards helping people. Since a young age I can remember being taught that hard work will pay off if you are dedicated. Yet this was always conditioned by the warning that you cannot be selfish — you must consider others as you try to reach your goals. She taught this not only through practicing what she preached while working countless hours at Copley Hospital in Aurora, aiding her patients, but additionally, through creating an environment for me that would create success without having things handed to me. It amazes me to talk with my mom now and have her point out little things she did to shape me when I was younger that have become habit today. This is particularly true when we discuss my life goals and the drive I have to be successful in helping others. The best part about all of this is she continually expressed her love and desire for me to succeed while teaching me the correct way to do things. A lesson I have learned from my stepfather, Phil, that has paid off greatly for me, is that you can be a tremendous leader without losing your gentle nature. Through watching the way he deals with people, I have gained a great deal of “social intelligence.” I enjoy being in situations where I am the leader, because I like to rationally sort out situations and reach the desired goal without disregarding others’ feelings along the way. I believe this talent has been honed by watching my stepfather deal with tense situations in his profession as an oncologist — with a kind, gentle, yet decisive hand that he uses to create success in situations that look extremely bleak. My grandfather, James, has done a great deal to shape who I am. Since a young age my grandfather wanted me to be his protégé. I recall his teaching me the lessons he learned as a World War II pilot, and how he worked through his education on the G.I. Bill, and how he climbed the corporate ladder at Caterpillar to be a highly successful vice president. Even though he has now been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease, to this day I can hear his life lessons in my mind. When I find myself in a tough situation, I remember his words of wisdom, and they always head me in the right direction. Lastly, I have a great group of friends. I am constantly amazed by how loyal we have been to each other, staying in contact since we were so young. We are extremely dedicated to one another, and this is something I am constantly learning from as well.” Zach is a highly respected member of the Estate Planning Center at Law Elder Law and especially appreciated by all for his servant’s heart. He always seems to be looking for ways to help those around him. Education:
  • DePaul University College of Law: Masters of Law in Taxation candidate 2011
  • Valparaiso University School of Law: Juris Doctor
  • Valparaiso University: Bachelor of Arts, cum laude — double majoring in Political Science and Philosophy
Bar Admissions
  • Admitted to practice in the State of Illinois
  • Professional Affiliations
  • Kane County Bar Association
  • DuPage County Bar Association
  • Chicago Bar Association
  • Past presenter to the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) on veterans benefits
Sincerely, Rick L. Law, Attorney, Estate Planner for Retirees. Rick was named the #1 Illinois elder law estate planning attorney for the past 3 years in a row by Leading Lawyer Magazine. He is co-author of “Alzheimers and the Law”, published by the American Bar Association. Rick has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, AARP Magazine, TheStreet.com, and numerous newspapers and articles. Rick is the lead attorney for Law Elder Law, LLP, focusing in Estate Planning, Guardianship, and Nursing Home Solutions. His goal is to give retirees an informed edge when it comes to dealing with an uncertain future. Get flexible retirement strategies that work during good times and bad, plus information on how you can save your home and assets from being used to pay for long term care.

We are proud to announce that Diana M. Law, Partner at Law Elder Law LLP, has been admitted to Practice before the United States Supreme Court. Pictured below is Diana meeting Justice Ginsburg: dml and ginsburg Anyone who knows Diana will be able to pick her out in the photo below.  Hint….She’s the only person wearing pink to the U.S. Supreme Court! dml supreme court Congratulations Diana!

By Diana M. Law, Partner, Law Elder Law LLP These past few months, I’ve worked toward something I never dreamed I might want to do.  Inspired by a fundraiser to benefit the Zellmer Childhood Disease Foundation, I laced up my running shoes and ran a 10k.  Before this event, I couldn’t even run around the block – never mind 6.2 miles! My accountability partner and I agreed: even if we’re slow, even if we come in dead last, we want to say that we finished the race. As any lawyer knows, the first thing we needed to do was tackle our schedules.  We decided that between our clients, families, and life, the only time Inez and I could fit in training for our 10k was at the bleak, agonizing hour of 5 a.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. We had done our research and pulled together a Couch-Potato-to-5k program, and convinced our friend (who happens to be a running coach) to meet us and encourage us.  We met each morning of our training at a big, abandoned warehouse.  The perimeter of the building was .4 miles around—an eternally huge stretch when you’re not a runner. Initially, we ran just two minutes at a time, then walked for two minutes.  After a week, we could stretch that to three minutes running, two walking, and so on.  When we got to the point where we could run the whole way around the building, we were out-of-our-minds excited! After many more baby steps, the big day came! This race was particularly special: it’s the Zellmer Foundation’s annual “Hero Run.”  The idea is that you can dress up like a superhero to entertain the kids, all while raising money to help a really great charity (www.zcdf.org). When I asked my friends what they thought my super-power was, the answer I got was that I “sparkle” and “light up a room.”  That’s when I decided to dress head-to-toe in glitter for the run.  I even had a tiara and a wand that stayed in my hand the entire time!).vs1 In the end, all our hard work paid off.   I finished the race, and what’s more, I won Most Creative Costume!  We’re not marathoners, but to us, running a 10k was a huge accomplishment.  The strange thing is, I actually found that I now enjoy running.  I can take my shoes along on trips and find a place to run almost anywhere. The lesson that was reinforced for me is the you must have a step-by-step plan to overcome the obstacles that confront you.  Life is a little like an endurance race—you have to strap on your shoes every day and keep moving forward, one step at a time.  Planning is only the preparation.  It is worthless if you don’t get out the door and run. That’s why I’m lacing up my running shoes and taking the next step—and I hope you do, too. All the best, Diana M. law  

By Rick Law, Senior Partner at Law Elder Law In the five years that I have been privileged to work with Attorney Zach Hesselbaum, I’ve seen that everybody loves him:  clients, referral sources, colleagues and teammates. We are excited and proud to announce that Zach has earned an advanced degree as a Masters of Law in Taxation from DePaul University College of Law. Attorney Hesselbaum began his career with Law Elder Law as a law clerk.  We got to know Zach because we had done a Special Needs Estate Plan for one of his relatives, and they chose Zach to be a member of the Advisory Committee on behalf of his relative with a disability.  Zach was a sophomore law student at Valparaiso College of Law at that time, and he came into our office to learn more about Special Needs Trust Planning.  We asked him to clerk for us, and he officially joined our legal team five years ago. Zach has distinguished himself in the areas of Elder Law, Customized Estate Plans, and Asset Protection.  He is nationally known for his extensive knowledge in the area of Veteran Benefits for wartime veterans in need of long term care assistance.  Zach currently serves as Chair of the DuPage County Bar Association Elder Law Committee. On the personal side, Zach is the ultimate sports enthusiast and is a big fan of the Chicago White Sox and the Dallas Cowboys.  The MOST important priority in his life is his family.  Zach’s wife works as a school Social Worker, and they just welcome their first child, a baby boy, in October. Congratulations Zach!

Congratulations to Diana Law for again being named as a Rising Star by Super Lawyers (a rating service of outstanding lawyers)! Diana has received this honor every year since 2010.  We are proud of Diana and her hard work as both a partner at Law Elder Law and as Kane County Public Guardian and Administrator.

Our pledge is simple:  We will do everything possible to give our clients peace of mind!  We deeply appreciate testimonials from our clients, and want to share a recent letter with you: My sister-in-law and I first contacted Law Elder Law when we realized my mother would need permanent nursing home care for her rapidly declining dementia.  We had previously contacted a local attorney who claimed to specialize in elder law.  We weren’t comfortable with some of his proposals, however, and felt uneasy about retaining his services.  I had heard a radio commercial about Law Elder Law and decided we would at least like to hear what they had to say.  Our very first impression was amazing.  We felt that all our concerns were listened to and understood.  There was a team that immediately began helping us.  Someone was assigned to help us find the kind of nursing home we wanted.  We were given a detailed packet on what we would need to eventually obtain Medicaid for her and assured that someone would help us every step of the way.  My sister-in-law and I felt very confident about retaining the services of Law Elder Law that day. Naturally we were a little concerned that once our retainer check was received, we might not see the same level of attention.  After almost a year of working with Law Elder Law, I can assure anyone that the care you’re shown on the first day is what you’ll receive the entire time you work with this firm. I also discovered that the Medicaid process is an absolute nightmare.  I can’t even imagine trying to do it on my own.  I worked with Stephanie for several months on this process and I can never thank her enough for her tireless effort in organizing all that was needed. I would highly recommend Law Elder Law to anyone. They are highly professional, compassionate and attentive.  They have a thorough knowledge of all the existing and upcoming laws concerning the elderly.  They are prompt in answering all calls and emails.  They are all wonderful but I have to give special thanks to Stephanie and Gina! Sincerely, Pat O. At Law Elder Law, we are committed to using our experience and expertise to lighten these burdens for our clients. We offer a helping hand and a sympathetic and understanding ear.  If you need help with the overwhelming burden of long term care, call us at 800-310-3100 or 630-585-5200.  Your first consultation is absolutely free.  We’ll let you know what steps you need to take, right now, to protect yourself and your family.

By Rick Law of Law Elder Law LLP, providing Solutions For Estate Planning, Guardianship, Nursing Home Care, and Elder Abuse Financial Recovery Kerry Peck, Esq., renowned partner of Peck Bloom and Diana Law, Esq., partner of Law Elder Law were recently tapped by the Illinois Institute of Continuing Legal Education (IICLE) to present on the subject of “Ethical Issues in Guardianships.”  They were joined by the Honorable Jane Louise Stuart, Circuit Judge, Probate Division, Circuit Court of Cook County, Chicago. Kerry and Diana have been working tirelessly to focus their practices by litigating tough guardianship and disputed trust and estate administration cases.  Their recent presentation covered a number of topics:
  • Alternatives to Guardianship:  An overview of factors which give rise to the need for a guardianship, and when an attorney should recommend to the client to see other remedies.
  • Guardian’s Obligations to Property:  An overview of the knotty and difficult role of fiduciary relationship and the high standard and obligation of the guardian to safeguard the estate.
  • Guardian’s Obligations with Regard to the Person
  • Obligation to Insure the Ward Lives in the Least Restrictive Environment
  • Sterilization and the Illinois Guardianship Act
  • Factors to Consider Regarding a Ward’s Medical Treatment
  • Communication and Decision Making Obligations
  • Best Interest vs. Substituted Judgment Standard
  • Informed Consent
  • Obligation to Terminate or Limit the Guardianship
  • Consultations with Family and Others
  • End of Life Decisions
If you or one of your loved ones needs help with a tough guardianship problem in the Chicago metropolitan area, Diana Law of Law Elder Law welcomes you to call and find out your options.  With her experienced guardianship team, you can rest assured you’re in good hands.  Or, if you’d like to find out how to avoid guardianship in the future, give our office a call at 630-585-5200. Sincerely, Rick L. Law, Attorney, Estate Planner for Retirees Rick was named the #1 Illinois elder law estate planning attorney by Leading Lawyer Magazine. He has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, AARP Magazine, TheStreet.com, and numerous newspapers and articles. Rick is the lead attorney for Law Elder Law, LLP, focusing in Estate Planning, Guardianship, and Nursing Home Solutions. His goal is to give retirees an informed edge when it comes to dealing with an uncertain future.  Get flexible retirement strategies that work during good times and bad, plus information on how you can save your home and assets from being used to pay for long term care.  Call 800-310-3100 for your free consultation now!

At Law Elder Law, we are fortunate enough to work with clients that have served our country at some point in their lives. Often these individuals and their spouses are in need of monetary assistance. One of the many facets of elder law permits us to focus on counseling seniors on how to properly apply for Veteran’s Benefits if they are indeed eligible. The rules and process for determining eligibility frequently change. Because of this, it is to the advantage of the veteran to seek the guidance of a qualified VA consultant, such as an elder law attorney. Recently, Zach Hesselbaum wrote an article that was featured in the Illinois State Bar’s February newsletter.  In the article, Zach spoke about some recent changes at the VA that may affect your benefits… “On December 20, 2012 the VA released news that beginning in 2013, they will no longer require the submission of an Eligibility Verification Report for VA pensioners. This release caught VA practitioners by complete surprise because the EVR process was such an integral part of VA pension benefit planning. The VA is ceasing this annual recertification process to reallocate the caseworkers who typically process Eligibility Verification Reports to clear up the large backlog of claims of VA claims. The VA will recertify Veterans and Surviving Spouses receiving pension on an annual basis using alternative means. The VA will use reports issued to the VA from the Social Security Administration and the Internal Revenue Service to determine ongoing eligibility. When this news release was made official on the VA Web site, I was doing figurative back flips with excitement. For years, the EVR reporting that traditionally began in January and ended in March was a huge thorn in the side of our practice. We would spend January through March helping clients file these forms prior to the March 1st deadline. We would then subsequently spend March through December working with clients to have VA benefits reinstated for those who filed their EVRs incorrectly or not at all. In my opinion, this is a step in the right direction for the VA because it will benefit not only those already on the benefit but those who have a claim waiting in the mountainous backlog. How the VA will conduct maintenance on benefits is yet to be seen.” Congratulations to Zach on the publication of this very timely and interesting article!