Senior Associate


As an attorney and registered Illinois CPA, practicing law for 23 years, Monica has worked with hundreds of clients to assist them in preparing their estate plans. However, Monica sees each of her clients as a unique individual who has specific concerns and goals for themselves and their families.  She provides each client personalized legal counseling and service to help them plan for their particular needs, and offers them the peace of mind achieved by having their affairs in order and being prepared for the future.







Monica is accomplished both as an attorney and as a CPA, with more than two decades of legal and accounting experience. This background in accounting, tax compliance, and law places Monica squarely at the crossroads of estate planning, trusts and taxation. Monica’s clients appreciate her ability to understand and carry matters through from beginning to end, preparing for challenges and circumstances before they arise. She consistently provides clients with clear and concise personalized service, communicating with her clients to address the unique aspects of their particular situation.

Monica offers clients thoughtful and matter-of-fact counsel with regard to estate planning and end-of-life matters, combining her extensive background in Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney, and taxation with her experience in Medicaid and long-term care planning. She provides families with peace of mind through careful estate planning, utilizing Wills and Trusts, which can protect assets for adult children and other family members, counseling them on both tax and non-tax considerations. Monica prepares clients, including  18-year-olds and other young adults, for the possibility of incapacity, using advance directives such as Powers of Attorney, Living Wills, and HIPAA Authorizations. Doing so enables families to make informed decisions in their best interests and avoid costly and time-consuming court guardianships if such circumstances do occur.

Monica also counsels and assists clients who have experienced the recent loss of a loved one in the administration of their estates and trusts. Understanding that this is a very emotional and stressful time for family, she offers guidance to simplify and streamline the process as much as possible.

Before joining Waltz, Palmer & Dawson, LLC, Monica spent several years with a law firm doing Medicaid and long-term care planning and other estate planning for clients. Prior to that, Monica had managed her own law practice, focusing on estate planning and administration, business creation and acquisitions, as well as other matters of business operations, such as assisting with issues that arise during the course of daily operations, succession planning or the sale of the business to new owners, issues of tax compliance, shareholder agreements, operating agreements and buy-sell agreements.

Monica graduated with Honors from Roosevelt University in 1990, where she attended its Arlington Heights campus on a full academic scholarship, earning a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a major in Accountancy.  She began working for a public accounting firm, and then passed the Certified Public Accountant exam following her graduation.  Monica continued working at the Schaumburg CPA firm for the next three years, assisting individual and business clients with all areas of tax compliance and return preparation, day-to-day accounting practices, and financial statement preparation.

Monica left her position as a licensed CPA to attend law school full-time at Chicago-Kent College of Law on a partial scholarship.  While in law school, Monica served as a Research Assistant for a professor in the area of estate planning, and earned Academic Achievement/CALI Awards for receiving the highest grade in several of her classes, including Estate Planning, Gift & Estate Tax, Employee Benefits Law, Advanced Research in Taxation, Tax Procedure, Legal Drafting, and Trademarks Law.  She also organized, and served as President of, the student chapter of the Justinian Society of Lawyers during her first year of law school.

Monica has served on the Board of Directors of the Northwest Suburban Estate Planning Council for many years and is currently Co-President of the organization.  She is also a member of the Estate Planning and Probate Committee of the Northwest Suburban Bar Association, where she served as Chair for several years, and an active member of WealthCounsel, a national network of estate planning attorneys. Monica currently serves on the Planned Gifts Committee for the Northwest Community Hospital Foundation in Arlington Heights. Monica previously served as PTA 1st Vice President and President at her children’s elementary school, and greatly enjoyed volunteering in many capacities throughout the eight years her children attended there.           


  • Chicago-Kent College of Law – J.D., High Honors – 1996
  • Roosevelt University – BSBA, Accountancy with Honors – 1990



  • Northwest Suburban Estate Planning Council, Member
    • Co-President, 2020 – 2021
    • Co-Vice President, 2018-2020
    • Board of Directors, 2015 to Present
  • Northwest Suburban Bar Association, Member
    • Estate Planning and Probate Committee, Chair, 2015 to 2019
  • WealthCounsel, Member
  • American Association of Attorney-Certified Public Accountants, Member
  • Arlington Heights Chamber of Commerce, Member
  • Illinois CPA Society-O’Hare Chapter, Member, 1991-1994 


  • Simple Will Updated May Not Be Enough, Almanac, Spring 2018


Should you have any questions about estate planning, or would like to schedule a free initial consultation, please contact Waltz, Palmer & Dawson, LLC at (847)253-8800 or contact us online.

Waltz, Palmer & Dawson, LLC is a full-service law firm with various areas of service to assist your business, including: Employment Law, Intellectual Property, Commercial Real Estate, Business Immigration, Litigation and general Business Law services. Services to individuals include Estate Planning, Wills and Trusts, Probate, Guardianship, Divorce and Family Law, Collaborative Divorce & Mediation.


This attorney bio constitutes attorney advertising. The material is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Content provided by Monica J. Gurgiolo.