Power of Attorney
Health problems and cognitive decline can render people unable to make important decisions about their healthcare, finances, and property. Fortunately, Illinois law allows people to grant durable powers of attorney to other individuals, effectively assigning them the right to make decisions on their behalf before they suffer from issues that render them incapacitated. If you are interested in granting someone powers of attorney, it is advisable to speak to an attorney regarding your options and concerns. The skillful LeGrange estate planning layer of Wilson & Wilson are adept at handling a variety of estate related matters, and we have the knowledge and resources needed to help you pursue your desired outcome. We regularly draft powers of attorney documents for parties in LeGrange and other cities throughout Illinois.Illinois Powers of Attorney Law
Illinois acknowledges the right of competent adults to appoint individuals to make decisions regarding their property and health care. As such, the Illinois legislature enacted the Power of Attorney Act (the Act), setting forth the rules and requirements for granting powers of attorney. Essentially, the Act allows people to grant authority to named parties to act on their behalf in the event they become incapacitated via a legal document referred to as granting power of attorney. Powers of attorney may be granted for health care and property and may be general or specific, meaning they can grant authority to manage all aspects of a concern, like a person’s finances, or can be limited to a discrete issue. They may be durable, which means that they go into effect immediately and are not impacted by the subsequent incapacity of the person granting authority, or may be springing, meaning they only become effective if the person granting authority becomes incapacitated.Power of Attorney for Health Care
A person may grant powers of attorney for health care to a health care agent, including the right to consent to or withdraw or refuse any medical treatment for the individual. Notably, power of attorney for health care may extend beyond a person’s death if needed to allow for an anatomical gift, autopsy, or disposition of remains.
Pursuant to the Act, power of attorney for health care must be granted via a written document that is signed by the person granting the powers and a witness. Only certain parties are permitted to serve as witnesses. The document does not have to be notarized.
A person may revoke power of attorney for health care at any time, regardless of his or her physical or mental condition, by destroying the document granting power of attorney in a way indicating the intent to revoke it, signing and dating a written revocation, or orally expressing the revocation in the presence of a witness who then signs and dates a written confirmation.Power of Attorney for Property
Similarly, the Act allows a person to grant power of attorney for property to another individual, allowing the agent to manage some or all of the principal’s property or finances. As with power of attorney for health care, a power of attorney for property must be in writing. It must also be signed by the principal, a witness, and a notary public. A power of attorney for health care may be revoked by the principal at any time and in any manner communicated to the agent.Discuss Your Estate Planning Needs With a Trusted Illinois Attorney
Granting someone powers of attorney can provide people peace of mind that their affairs will be handled appropriately if they become unable to make decisions for themselves. If you are interested in granting powers of attorney to another individual, it is in your best interest to talk to a trusted Illinois attorney. At Wilson and Wilson, our LeGrange attorneys can evaluate your circumstances and advise you of the best method to proceed to achieve your goals. We regularly aid help people grant powers of attorney in Cook County, including Chicago, Arlington Heights, Cicero, Hoffman Estates, Mount Prospect, Palatine, Schaumburg, Evanston, Skokie, and Tinley Park, DuPage County including Naperville, Aurora, and Wheaton, and Lake County including Buffalo Grove, Mundelein, Highland Park, and Waukegan. Our primary office is in LeGrange, and we have a second office in Northbrook. We also have satellite offices in Orland Park and Warrenville, where we are available by appointment. You can contact us through our form online or at our LeGrange office at (708) 482-7090 or our Northbrook Office at (847) 656-8958 to set up a meeting.