A power of attorney in Illinois is a crucial legal document that empowers an individual to grant decision-making authority to another person, the agent.
The agent is designated to act on behalf of the principal and is authorized to perform specific duties outlined in the document. These powers can be broad or limited, depending on the principal's preferences.
It is typically used when the principal cannot make decisions due to illness, absence, or when the principal wishes to delegate authority for a certain matter.
This document ensures that critical decisions are made in the principal's best interests and that their affairs are managed smoothly and efficiently.
Types of Power of Attorney in Illinois
Illinois Durable (Statutory) Power of Attorney Requirements
A durable power of attorney grants the agent or attorney-in-fact the authority to make decisions and take actions on behalf of the principal if the principal becomes incapacitated or disabled.
Illinois General (Financial) Power of Attorney Requirements
With a general power of attorney, the agent is granted authority to make financial decisions on behalf of the principal.
These can include managing bank accounts, paying bills, making investments, and buying or selling assets, among other financial matters.
Illinois Limited (Special) Power of Attorney Requirements
A limited power of attorney in Illinois grants the agent the authority to act on the principal's behalf in a specific transaction or event, such as the sale of a property or the handling of a legal matter.
Illinois Parental (Minors) Power of Attorney Requirements
A parental power of attorney allows parents to authorize another person to care for their minor child when they are unavailable or unable to do so, such as when traveling abroad, receiving medical treatment, or during military deployment.
This document temporarily transfers certain powers related to the property, care, and custody of the minor child to the appointed person.
Both parents, who have legal rights to their child(ren), must consent to this power of attorney.
Illinois Medical Power of Attorney Requirements
A medical power of attorney in Illinois allows a principal to appoint someone else to make healthcare decisions on their behalf. This document empowers the agent to communicate with the principal's doctor, provide consent, or decline certain treatments, depending on the principal's desires.
The agent is responsible for ensuring that the principal's healthcare wishes are followed, even if the principal is incapacitated or unable to communicate their wishes.
Illinois Springing Power of Attorney Requirements
An Illinois springing power of attorney allows a designated agent to take over decision-making responsibilities in the event of a future occurrence, such as the principal's incapacity. Until that event occurs, a power of attorney is inactive, and the principal retains full decision-making authority.
Once the specified event or condition occurs, the power of attorney "springs" into action, and the designated agent or agents are granted the legal authority to make decisions and take actions on behalf of the principal.
Illinois Vehicle Power of Attorney Requirements
The vehicle power of attorney allows an agent to act on behalf of the owner of a vehicle in specific situations, such as selling, transferring, or registering the vehicle. This document is often used when the owner is unable to sign the necessary paperwork in person.
Illinois Revocation of Power of Attorney Requirements
The revocation of power of attorney in Illinois allows the principal to revoke or cancel a previously executed power of attorney. Note that revocation must be done in writing and communicated to all parties involved.
Illinois Tax Power of Attorney Requirements
With a tax power of attorney, the principal authorizes an agent to act on behalf of the taxpayer concerning their tax matters. This can include filing tax returns, representing the taxpayer in audits or negotiations with the IRS, and signing agreements or waivers on behalf of the taxpayer.
Illinois Real Estate Power of Attorney Requirements
This type of power of attorney is used by the principal when they want to authorize someone to act on their behalf in real estate matters, such as buying or selling property, signing contracts, or managing real estate investments.
Legal Requirements for a Power of Attorney in Illinois
To be considered legal in front of governmental agencies, a power of attorney must meet the following requirements:
Mental capacity. The principal must be of sound mind and capable of making informed decisions. The agent must also have the mental capacity to act on behalf of the principal.
Written form. The document must be in writing and signed by the principal or someone authorized to sign on their behalf.
Witnesses and notarization A power of attorney for property requires the signature of at least one witness and notarization, while a power of attorney for health care only requires the signature of a witness with no notarization needed.
Who Can Be an Agent for a Power of Attorney in Illinois?
In Illinois, an agent for a power of attorney can be any person who is at least 18 years old and of sound mind. The agent can be a family member, friend, or any other trusted individual. It's essential to choose someone who is responsible, trustworthy, and has your best interests at heart.
It's also possible to name multiple agents to act jointly or independently. If naming more than one agent, it's important to specify whether they must act together or if they can act separately.
How to Create an Illinois Power of Attorney
Power of Attrorney in Illinois
#1. Decide on Which Type of Document to Use
Illinois recognizes several types of power of attorney forms, so determine which type of power of attorney best suits your needs based on when you want it to start, terminate, etc.
#2. Select an Agent
Choose someone you trust to act as your agent. This could be a family member, friend, or lawyer.
#3. Define the Agent’s Powers
Specify the powers you want to grant to your agent. For example, you may want to give your agent the authority to make financial decisions, manage your real estate, or make healthcare decisions.
#4. Download & Fill in Our Form
Obtain the appropriate form for the type of power of attorney you want to create. You can simply download any of our reliable forms that fit your needs.
#5. Get It Signed & Notarized
Make sure to notarize your signed power of attorney document whenever it's required.
#6. Safely Store the Original Copy
Keep an original copy of the document in a secure location and notify trusted people about it.
#7. Provide Copies to Relevant Parties
Provide copies of the power of attorney document to relevant parties, such as your bank, healthcare providers, and attorney, so they can act accordingly.
#8. Update the Document as Needed
Update the power of attorney document as needed, especially if there are changes in your personal or financial circumstances or if your agent is no longer able to act on your behalf.
How Long Does a Power of Attorney Last in Illinois?
In Illinois, a durable power of attorney is a type of power of attorney that remains valid even if the principal becomes incapacitated.
On the other hand, it can continue until the principal dies, regardless of how much time has passed since it was created or whether a guardian has been appointed for the principal.
The principal may amend or revoke a power of attorney at any time and in any manner communicated to the agent, provided that the principal has the capacity to do so.
Note that executing a new power of attorney does not automatically revoke a previous one unless the subsequent power of attorney expressly revokes the previous one or states that all other powers of attorney are revoked.
Illinois Power of Attorney FAQ
A power of attorney is useful in situations where the person is unable to handle their own affairs due to illness, disability, or absence.
A power of attorney is a legal document that gives the agent or attorney-in-fact the authority to act on behalf of the principal.
In Illinois, only a real estate power of attorney must be signed in the presence of a notary public to be legally valid. However, it is always a good idea to have your power of attorney notarized for additional validation and security.
Yes, because a power of attorney and a will serve different purposes. A power of attorney gives someone else the authority to act on your behalf while you are alive. On the other hand, a will determines how your belongings and assets are distributed to your heirs after your death.