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Paul A. Smolinski

Elder law Attorney at Frankfort, IL

4.3   15 reviews

also known as Palos Elder Law, Ltd.

Virtual consultation available
Virtual consultation available
  • Licensed for 37 years
    State IL
    Acquired 1987
    Active and Authorized to Practice Law No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Paul

Learn Paul’s areas of practice.

Practice areas
  1. Elder law
    Helping clients and their families understand the complexities of the laws and societal issues regarding aging. Our goal is to understand the needs of each family and work out a plan that is in our client's best interest now and as life changes. Planning now .... saves money and reduces anxiety later.

    36 years, 1,200 cases

  2. Medicaid and medicare
    Understanding Medicaid is a very important part of Elder Law. Our firm assists clients in understanding Medicaid and how it may pertain to their situation in dealing with disability and long term care. We also assist clients in filing Medicaid applications for nursing home care.

    18 years, 250 cases

  3. Probate
    Guardianships, Will Contests and Deceased Persons Estates are all under the jurisdiction of the Probate Court. Our firm has been involved in all of these types of cases and, it is our hope, that our clients have benefited from our knowledge of the law, the court system and from our desired to understand the needs of our clients.

    37 years, 400 cases

  4. Trusts
    We have prepared revocable or living trusts, special needs trusts, irrevocable trusts and many other types of trusts for our clients. The most commonly used trust is called a "living trust." It's purposes can include: probate avoidance, reduced estate taxation and an orderly transfer of assets within a family with the least amount of conflicts. Trusts are commonly used with other important legal documents such as Wills and Powers of Attorney.

    37 years, 800 cases

  5. Estate planning
    The term "estate planning" really covers many different areas. Often associated with something that is only done by "the wealthy" the process of understanding what documents and plans might be helpful is valuable for everyone! It is time to review what estate planning documents that you have (or don't have), talk about your family (including your concerns and goals) and then listen to a professional (us) about how you can protect your assets and your good family relations by acting now.

    37 years, 1,500 cases


Paul Smolinski has been practicing law in Palos Heights since 1988.  We work diligently to understand clients concerns and to offer clients logical and practical solutions.  It is our goal to a establish a long term partnership with you and your family!


We are an Elder Law firm.  Elder Law includes matters pertaining to nursing homes, probate court, guardianships, estate planning documents, medicaid and tax laws.  But our experience comes also from having practiced in the areas of:  bankrutpcy, divorce, adoption, real estate and business representation.  Our broad experience helps you receive answers based on real-life situations and real-life resolutions to problems.


 "Protecting Clients ... Families ... and their Assets - that's what we do!"

Photos and videos


Palos Elder Law, Ltd.
19550 S. Harlem Avenue
Suite 2
Frankfort, IL, 60423


4.3 / 5.0
  15 customer reviews
Posted by Marybeth | June 28, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Your search ends here with Paul!
When my dad passed away in early 2015, there were no provisions left for my mom who is in mid-late stage Alzheimer's. I took the book the social worker gave me and found Paul. I honestly can't tell you how relieved I was when I met and hired him and Palos Elder Care. I needed a fast course in elder care law on how to proceed with taking care of my mom. Paul is not your average stuffy lawyer. He is fun and caring and generous with his time and information. He has met my mom many times now, and they are friends! The first thing Paul would do before our meetings was dance with my mom! He made sure mom felt important, and if she wanted to sing and dance, he was right there with her even if it meant our appointment took longer than scheduled. I love that Paul cares about us so much. He's almost one of the family at this point! Aside from making my mom feel like a wonderful human being, Paul is incredibly knowledgable at elder care law. Everything he told me happened in the order he said it would, and I felt very confident and assured by him and his amazing staff. Everyone cares at Palos Elder Law. We were not just another case/client. Working with Paul, I gained full Guardianship of my mom even though I resided in California. I traveled every month to care for mom to ensure the best was being done for her. Paul helped me through selling my parent's home, and offered me additional information about other memory care facilities in the area. (Autumn Leaves in Orland Park was absolutely amazing if you can do private pay for a while!) After securing Guardianship and selling mom's home, my next task was to relocate my mom out here to California to be by me on a full-time basis. Paul understood our need to be together geographically, and so we began the process of soliciting the court to permanently move mom to CA. Paul helped me with this every step of the way. I know my dad is extremely pleased watching over us, and he's thrilled Paul was there to help me and mom! My mom is now here in CA! She is in a wonderful memory care facility 25 mins from my house! Paul and I finished my first year of accounting for mom, and he got all my petitions granted and our case is about to be closed with him in Illinois. If you are still reading, I know you care about your loved one as much as I love and adore my mom. Paul is your guy....Palos Elder Care is your law firm. You can stop your search right now and just pick up the phone and call Colleen for your appointment. You will not be disappointed. Paul & Pam will forever have a warm place in our hearts for taking an awful situation and making it easy for me to understand with successful outcomes. All my best to you, Marybeth.M p.s. Go hire Paul now!
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Posted by anonymous | March 8, 2009
Expert Lawyer at Your Service
The passing of a parent is sad and emotional - unfortunately it is also difficult working out the details of an estate with 5 siblings. Who even knows where to begin - we thought it was all worked out, unfortunately it was a mess. Paul Smolinski's expertise and knowledge in elder law is just what we needed to sort things out. Along with his knowledge, he delivered a high standard of ethics & compassion. Thank You Paul! Wilma
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Posted by Linda | April 20, 2023
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Elder Law
I had a consultation for my mother today with Paul. He is a wonderful attorney. Very kind, very personable, very helpful, very instructive. He was genuine and spent a great deal of time with us going over what our next steps need to be. I cannot express our gratitude and appreciation for his expertise in his field. If you need an attorney that truly represents his clients, please contact him. You will not be disappointed.
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Posted by Kent | February 10, 2017
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Initial Consultation - A+
Paul was a pleasure to deal with for our initial consultation. He was very accommodating given I was remote (dial-in) and primarily facilitating the meeting between him and my father. He was compassionate, listened and quickly understood the issues and hand and gave straight honest answers and actionable next-steps. He was willing to think "out of the box" and showed a sense of urgency where it mattered. Ultimately, I think I would have been hard pressed to find someone better suited to my needs in the Chicago area. Thanks Paul! Looking forward to working with you!
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Posted by Michael | August 10, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
A Good Lawyer and Excellent Legal Services
I hired Paul Smolinski to handle a financially modest but legally complicated part of my deceased father's estate. Mr. Smolinski provided accurate, useful and timely information which allowed me to make the correct decisions and complete my work. Mr. Smolinski was always friendly and upbeat, along with having the perseverance to keep the process moving forward. Mr. Smolinski's fees were appropriate and never excessive. I would recommend him for estate and probate legal work.
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Posted by Michael | July 7, 2011
A true professional
Paul Smolinski is an absolute professional in his practice. I have come across several different lawyers and after working with Mr. Smolinski, I will never work with anyone else. He handled my mother’s case in which the nursing home was trying to sue me for negligence of cost. Among many of his other cases, Mr. Smolinski took such an interest in my case that I never felt neglected or unsure of the process.
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Posted by Richard | August 16, 2010
Per review
I have referred clients to and have worked as a co-counsel with Mr. Smolinski over more than 15 years. He has proven to be knowledgeable and on the leading edge new and developing trends in the areas of elder law and estate planning. Ascertaining and fulfilling client needs are at the top of his concern in each matter he handles. I am so confident in Mr. Smolinski's services I have referred my closest family members to family to him for estate planning services.
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Posted by Keith | August 12, 2010
Collecting inherited funds held by State
I had been trying to collect an inheritance held by the state from a distant relative who died twelve years ago without a will, but I had been unable to prove to the state that I was related to the deceased. Several lawyers I contacted had no clue how to get this done. Paul, however, knew exactly how to go about it, and was very confident from the start. I was skeptical, given the discouraging feedback from other attorneys, but Paul performed true to his word and things proceeded exactly as he had laid out until I finally received the inheritance from the state. Paul's fee was very reasonable to boot.
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Posted by Matt | January 27, 2010
Great Counsel
I recently ran into some issues with my aging parents who live in the Chicago area. I live on the east coast so I had to find an attorney how could provide me help and guidance on some key issues. After looking for some leads on lawyers, I found Paul Smolinski who provides, as one of his specilty, counsel on elderly issues. Paul was instrumental in helping me and my parents understand the complexities of the documents and steps we had to take on our issue. He was easily availabe during the process when we had questions or to review documents. His advice on ederly care and asset protection was extemely helpful. I wouldn't hesitate to pick up the phone and call him again...I know he would be there for me.
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Posted by anonymous | March 21, 2009
paul smolinski review
Mr Smolinski has provided several services to our family. Most recently he cared for the disposition of my mother's estate. This included a trust agreement, a will and the sale of her home. During a very difficult time, Paul demonstrated professionalism and was quite empathatic to our situation. Communication was responcive, explanation of the various documents was clear and he demonstrated a high degree of patience. Our family would certainly retain Paul's services in the future.
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Posted by anonymous | March 19, 2009
Dennis G.
Paul assisted me in the incorporation of my business. Initially I was unsure of which entity was best, but Paul explained the various options and provided guidance in selecting the appropriate form. Paul also provided the necessary paperwork,and completed the documentation for me. Pauls expertise and knowledge on the subject matter greatly simplified the process, and provided assurance that I was making the the appropriate choice. Thanks Paul!
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Posted by anonymous | March 18, 2009
Evaluation of Services
I consider Paul an excellent attorney who handles thing efficiently and expeditiously. Paul has proved to be approachable, reliable, and has handled a variety of items for me.
Posted by tom | September 6, 2014
I called and left e-mail and noted as requested I need real estate attorney. Never got back to me I figured RE was "Below" his state of current expertise !
Response from Paul Smolinski July 6, 2015
Interesting. If we didn't get back to Tom then I apologize. Our firm does represent clients with respect to real estate transactions IF they are related to administration within a trust or estate. We no longer represent individuals in other real estate transactions; however, we will offer referrals to other attorneys that can assist.
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Posted by Kimberly | November 9, 2020
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
No Goood (In My Opinión)
I gave him part of $3500 with some other people to get money from a probate case. I receive the money, but that went to another agency within the Cook County maze of departments. I went to that agency and was told that I needed a distribution letter to release my funds. Sooooooo, my part of that $3500, didn't constitute a distribution letter? Reallllly? You be the judge....
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Posted by anonymous | June 24, 2015
estate nightmare
I hired Mr. Smolinski to help with my mother's estate. after 3 year and tens of thousands of dollars I fired him. Instead of providing sound legal advise, he delayed actions. I also hired him to author a Will and Trust for myself. When it came time to utilize the Trust with a home purchase, he didn't return my phone calls. the attorney who managed my house purchase informed me the Trust he authored was unusable because it was so poorly written. Do not hire this attorney.
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Response from Paul Smolinski January 19, 2016
We are well aware of who this "anonymous client" is because, as she indicates, our firm worked with her for over 3 years. Frankly, my staff was relieved that she "fired" us because she was/is an irrational and unreasonable person. I stand by the work that I performed for her at her request. I have been listening to clients for almost 30 years and I make "sound legal recommendations" to clients and when they agree, I draft documents to meet the clients needs and objectives stated to me. Lastly, I am still looking for the "tens of thousands of dollars" that this former client paid to my firm. Quite the overstatement; however, that statement is consistent with her daily approach toward other humans that do not agree completely with her vast knowledge gained via the internet.
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  • Hourly Rates $ 375-400 per hour
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card


AVVO RATING 8.3 (Excellent)

Work Experience

  • President
  • Palos Elder Law, Ltd.
  • 1992 - Present
  • Investigator
  • Chicago Police Department
  • 1982 - 1984


  • John Marshall Law School, Chicago
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1987

Sample of Legal Cases

  • Estate of Margaret Guss
  • Favorable Settlement - Will Contest


  • National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys
  • Member
  • 1989 - Present
  • Chicago Bar Association
  • Member
  • 1988 - Present
  • American Bar Association
  • Member
  • 1987 - Present
  • Illinois State Bar Association
  • Member
  • 1987 - Present
  • Southwest Bar Association
  • Member
  • 1987 - Present
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Litigator
  • National Association of Trial Lawyers
  • 1989


  • Elder Law News - Illinois
  • Beware Agents - Changes to the Illinois Power of Attorney Laws - 2011
  • 2011

Speaking Engagements

  • Elder Planning Solutions - 2010
  • Medicaid Planning in 2010
  • 2010
  • Various Locations
  • Elder Law & Probate Avoidance
  • 2009
View all speaking engagements

Attorney endorsements

Received (17)
Given (21)
Endorse Paul
Estate planning Attorney | Jan 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Paul's insight offered in the AVVO community is impressive and I endorse him."
Elder law Attorney | Jul 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Unknown Attorney | Dec 16
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Lawyers who serve the avvo community as much as Mr. Smolinski are few and far between. It takes passion, concern and dedication to devote so much time. You have my endorsement and kudos."
Elder law Attorney | Feb 16
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Attorney Smolinski has an excellent rating on AVVO and gives quality answers in this forum."
Estate planning Attorney | Jan 06
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I have read many of Mr. Smolinski's answers here at Avvo. He is very careful in his analysis, making sure he understands the facts and his opinions are well considered. These are the characteristics of a fine lawyer. I strongly endorse this lawyer."
Probate Attorney | Aug 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse Attorney Smolinski. He and I practice in some of the same areas of law and I have had the opportunity to review hundreds of his answers. His responses to Avvo questions demonstrate not only legal knowledge and expertise in these areas of the law, but also a practical mindset and desire to achieve the best result for the client. I am happy to endorse such an outstanding estate planning and probate attorney. James Frederick"
Unknown Attorney | Feb 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I have had the opportunity to review Paul's responses to questions on Avvo and have been impressed with his knowledge of the law and the information that he has provided. His focus on elder law and related practice areas has clearly provided him with a wealth of knowledge and experience. I am pleased to endorse Paul."
Estate planning Attorney | Jan 30
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. I met Paul Smolinski, Esq. in the Avvo community, having read recommendations, comments and advice. He is a fantastic contributor to Avvo, and asset for users here seeking direction, and has a great practice. I look forward to referring matters to Paul that are in his jurisdiction, and consulting with him."
Unknown Attorney | Jan 26
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Terrific lawyer. Highly regarded throughout the nation."
Elder law Attorney | Jan 14
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Paul is both knowledgeable and compassionate in dealing with senior issues. I would highly recommend him."
Elder law Attorney | Jan 12
Relationship: Worked for lawyer
"I worked for Paul for several years and have been his friend for many years as well. Paul has a knack for relating to his elderly clients. He is able to put them at ease, provide concise explanations, and treat these clients with dignity and respect."
Unknown Attorney | Dec 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Elder law Attorney | Dec 10
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Attorney Smolinski is the best Elder Law attorney in Illinois. He is honest, hard working and a credit to the legal profession. He is the type of attorney, I would want to handle my families case. He is the best."
Unknown Attorney | Aug 29
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Elder law Attorney | Aug 18
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer's work. I have known and worked with Paul for over 15 years. I have found him to be thorough and knowledgeable in all work he has performed. He is well advised in current trends in Elder Law and he is able to convey his expertise in a clear and concise manner. I have recommended many individuals to him for his legal services in Elder Law including my own family members. Paul should be your first and only choice in the field of Elder Law and it related areas including, wills, trusts and estate administration."
Estate planning Attorney | Feb 01
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer's work. I have known Paul Smolinski for over 20 years and have worked with him on many matters. Paul has exceptional analytical and legal abilities, is conscientious, and shows tremendous concern and care for his clients. I highly recommend Paul for estate planning, probate, elder law, and real estate"
Elder law Attorney | Jan 30
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer's work. I have found Paul to be knowledgeable, thorough and diligent in his practice."
View more endorsements
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Estate planning
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