Melanie K. Rummel

Melanie K. Rummel

Of Counsel
Lake Forest, Illinois

Ms. Rummel has practiced law in the areas of estate planning and probate and trust administration for more than 38 years. She represents individuals in the transfer and protection of wealth and all types of assets, including family businesses.  She has represented successive generations of the same family in handling matters from drafting the plan through the estate settlement.   In addition to her concentration in estate planning, probate and trust administration she also handles equine law matters. 

Ms. Rummel has been an adjunct professor of law at Loyola University of Chicago Law School where she developed the course and taught third year law students to draft wills and trust agreements. She has also authored chapters for the Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education publications. Ms. Rummel has been a frequent speaker on estate planning and estate administration topics in both Lake and Cook County, most recently for the Northwestern University Alumni Association, Northwestern Retired Faculty and The Chicago Trust Company/ WinTrust Wealth Management. She is a 38 year member of the Chicago Bar Association and a member of its Trust and Probate Committees, a member of the Chicago Estate Planning Council and a member of the Lake County Bar Association and its Trusts and Estates Committee and the Lake County Estate Planning Council. She is Immediate Past President of the Lake County Bar Foundation.

Ms. Rummel also works tirelessely for a number of civic and cultural organizations in Lake Forest and along the North Shore. She is an Alderman on the Lake Forest City Council, a Past Chairman of the Board of Lake Forest Open Lands Association, Past President of Lake Forest School District #67.

Ms. Rummel graduated from Northwestern University with a B.A. and graduated with distinction from Loyola University Law School.  She is also licensed to practice law in the State of Wisconsin and is a member of the Wisconsin Bar Association. 

Areas of Practice

  • Estate Planning
  • Trust Administration
  • Probate
  • Equine

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois, 1979
  • Wisconsin, 2009
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Illinois, 1979


  • Loyola University Chicago School of Law, Chicago, Illinois
    • J.D. - 1979
    • Honors: With Distinction
    • Honors: Moot Court Board member
  • Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, USSR
    • B.A. - 1975
    • Major: Political Science

Published Works

  • Illinois Estate Administration, Aletrnatives to Supervised Probate, Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education
  • Ilinois Estate Administration, Nonresident Decedents, Illinois Institute for Continiuing Legal Education


  • Ms. Rummel co-authored two chapters in the Illinois Estate Administration Handbook, Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education
  • Multijurisdictional Practice, The Chicago Bar Association, Trust Committee
  • Speaker, Lake County Council for Seniors - Estate Planning Today
  • Adjunct Professor, Loyola University of Chicago Law School
  • Drafting Wills and Trusts, Adjunct Professor, Loyola Law School, Chicago, 2009 - 2012
  • What Will Be Your Legacy?, Northwestern University Alumni Association, 2014 - Present
  • Estate Planning for Couples, The Chicago Trust Company/WinTrust Wealth Management
  • Asset Protection Planning, The Chicago Trust Company/WinTrust Wealth Management
  • Planning for Aging Parents, The Chicago Trust Company/WinTrust Wealth Management

Honors and Awards

  • Chicago Magazine's Volunteer of the Year

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Lake County Bar Association: Trusts and Estates Committee
  • Chicago Estate Planning Council, 1997 - Present
  • Chicago Bar Association, Probate Committee and Trust Committee, 1979 - Present
  • Lake County Estate Planning Council
  • Lake County Bar Foundation, Immediate Past President, 2011 - Present
  • American College of Equine Attorneys

Past Employment Positions

  • United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Law Clerk for Judge John F. Grady, former Chief Judge

Pro Bono Activities

  • President, Lake Forest School District #67 School Board
  • Chairman, Lake Forest Open Lands Association (current)
  • President, Women’s Board of Catholic Charities of Lake County
  • Chairman, Lake Forest Lake Bluff Volunteer Bureau
  • Vice President, Lake Forest/Lake Bluff League of Women Voters
  • Gorton Community Center Board of Directors
  • Co-Chairman, Lake Forest Day 100th Anniversary Celebration
  • President, Northwestern University College of Arts and Sciences Alumni Association
  • Ragdale Women's Board
  • Chairman, Clockwise Theatre, Waukegan, Illinois


  • French