Women Face Unique Challenges in the CRE Market

DuPage County real estate lawyersAlthough great strides have been made in achieving gender equality in America, women continue to face significant challenges in the commercial real estate market. In fact, studies show that women are still making less than their male counterparts, even though they are doing the same work. Learn how you can overcome the issues you are facing in the CRE market, and discover how a seasoned attorney can assist you in the process. 

Gender Equality Issues in the CRE Market

In a study published by RETS, a commercial real estate recruitment and staffing firm, 618 women in entry- to senior-level CRE market positions revealed their biggest concerns. A startling 87.2 percent said they are concerned about the lack of equal pay, and 65 percent said they had learned that a male counterpart made more than them. Of those, 75 percent claimed they had heard on two or more occasions that a male agent made more than them. 

Advancement opportunities were another great concern. In fact, 79.2 percent said they felt they did not have any advancement opportunities within their company, and 61 percent said they felt they had been passed up for an advancement opportunity. Of those women, 85 percent said it had happened on more than one occasion. Additionally, 79.1 percent of women said they did not feel that their opinions were as valued as their male counterparts. 

Overcoming Challenges in the CRE Market 

While there is little that women can do about the gender gaps in the CRE market, there are measures they can take to ensure their opinions are valued, and that they receive the best possible  chances at advancement. First and foremost, women need to speak out when they feel they are being discriminated against over gender. Second, know where to find assistance if you feel you are facing gender discrimination in the workplace, as this is against the law. Lastly, women are encouraged to utilize the resources that are available to them, such as the aid of a lawyer when growing their portfolios. 

Contact Our DuPage County Real Estate Attorneys

The CRE market is one of the leading employers in the nation, which means there are many women who could be at a disadvantage on the job. Stock, Carlson, Oldfield & McGrath, LLC advocates for these women to ensure their rights are protected, and we assist them in making sound investment decisions so they can grow and expand their wealth. Discover how our seasoned DuPage County real estate attorneys can assist you. Call 630-665-2500 and schedule a personalized consultation with us today. 




Single and Retired? Try These Strategies When Creating Your Illinois Will or Trust

DuPage County wills and trusts lawyerWhile those who are married or have kids typically have a built-in plan, should anything happen to them, singles rarely have this option. As such, they may find themselves incapacitated or ill with no one to protect their interests. Even worse, if they pass away, their entire life’s earnings could be lost. Thankfully, there are ways that single people can protect themselves from such a fate. Learn more, and discover how a seasoned will an trust lawyer can assist with the process. 

Examining the Role and Responsibilities of a Proxy or Trust

A trust or proxy is someone who makes medical, financial, or estate decisions for an incapacitated or deceased party. Used by single and married people alike, this person must be appointed by the individual in question ahead of time, and their roles and responsibilities must be clearly outlined. These may include:

  • Financial responsibilities – Making decisions on behalf of the individual and handling of their finances, should they become incapacitated; 
  • Healthcare responsibilities – Making medical decisions if the individual becomes incapacitated; and
  • Will or trust executor responsibilities – Handling of the estate and final expenses, should the individual pass away.

Ensuring Your Proxy is Prepared for Their Role

Your will or estate plan can be as simple or comprehensive as you like, but keep in mind that your proxy only knows what you tell them. For example, if you do not want to have excessive measures taken to keep you alive, you must outline this in your will or estate plan. Additionally, if you only want your proxy to handle certain aspects of your estate, you will want to ensure this is clearly stated and explained. Of course, it can be difficult to plan for all scenarios, especially on your own. As such, individuals are highly encouraged to seek legal counsel when drafting their will or estate plan. 

You will also want to ensure that your proxy has all the information they need to handle their responsibilities (i.e. passwords for online banking, credit cards, and online banking), and they will need a list of your debts and assets, along with a copy of your passport and information on any insurance policies you may have. This information can be placed in an envelope and given to your proxy. Just be sure to also supply your attorney with a copy, and update the information anytime something changes. 

Contact Our DuPage County Estate Planning Lawyers

With more than 40 years of experience, Stock, Carlson, Oldfield & McGrath, LLC has the knowledge and skills to help ensure your estate plan is created with your best interests in mind. Schedule your personalized consultation with our DuPage County estate planning lawyers to learn more. Call 630-665-2500 today. 




Small Businesses in Illinois Are Experiencing Record Profits But There May Still Be Trouble on the Horizon

Wheaton small business lawyersDuring the Great Recession, many small business owners struggled to make ends meet. Many had to close their doors. Today, things look very different. In fact, small businesses have been a major contributor to the nation’s recovery, and most are seeing record profits. Sadly, financial experts believe there could still be trouble on the horizon. Learn how you can safeguard your company against some of the challenges that may arise over the next few years, and discover how a seasoned small business lawyer can help with the process. 

Record Profits for Small Businesses Across the Nation

According to the new Small Business Optimism Index, published by the National Federation of Independent Business, small businesses are experiencing record profits, nationwide. What is more, the reporting of poor sales has fallen to a near record low. Sadly, there are some concerns over whether this trend will continue, especially in Illinois, where business taxes may soon increase, thanks to the state’s massive debt level. For smaller companies, the increase could be especially crippling, as many are pass-through entities, meaning they pay taxes out of their own personal income. 

To make matters worse, there are politicians who want to increase the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour over the next few years. That is an increase of about 70 to 80 percent in wages; few small businesses could handle such a hike. In fact, those in Cook County, where the minimum wage is $13 an hour, are already struggling, yet it is likely only a matter of time before the increase occurs state-wide. Thankfully, it is possible to start mitigating against the challenges now, long before they are approved. 

Preparing Your Small Business for Potential Tax and Wage Increases

While there is little that a small business can do to avoid the tax and wage hike issues, there are ways to prepare for the challenges that may arise because of them. First, the business can have a financial expert examine their books to look for any potential cut-backs. Second, small business owners can seek the aid of a lawyer. The benefit here is that a lawyer can examine the company for vulnerabilities like confusing verbiage in their employment contracts or company policies. As such, the business can reduce their risk of a wrongful termination or discrimination lawsuit, which could completely bankrupt them if the taxes and wages do increase. 

Contact Our Wheaton Small Business Lawyers

At Stock, Carlson, Oldfield & McGrath, LLC, we understand the challenges that small businesses face because we are a small company ourselves. Backed by more than 40 years of experience, our seasoned Wheaton small business lawyers also have the knowledge and foresight to assist you in preparing for the possible challenges ahead. Start by scheduling a personalized consultation. Call our offices at 630-665-2500 today.