Have you ever wondered what would happen to your estate and assets if you become incapacitated or you pass away? Can you say for sure your estate and assets will go to your loved ones or family members? A power of attorney can prove invaluable – especially if you plan on making a will. He/she can ensure the items mentioned in your will legally go to designated members or loved ones.
What Is a Power of Attorney?
According to the Illinois Power of Attorney Act, a power of attorney is an individual you assign as your representative to manage your affairs and assets when you cannot do so yourself. At some point, you will have to decide what type of attorney you need. This is why you should discuss any POA agreement you create with an attorney who is well-versed in estate laws.
The general requirements of a POA for financial and estate matters include the following:
- The POA has to be signed by at least one witness to the principal’s signature.
- Designate the power of the agent and the agent.
- It should be signed by the principal.
- Confirm the principal has acknowledged their signature before the witness or notary public.
Appointing a POA
The individual you choose must be at least 18 to qualify as a power of attorney.The witnesses and agents you choose must also be 18, be of sound mind and mentally competent to ensure they can sign required documents and oversee estate distribution appropriately.
If you have property you wish to bequeath to your family, you need to fill out the Illinois Statutory Short Form Power of Attorney for Property. However, it must be filled, signed and authenticated by an attorney to be deemed valid. Once a POA has been successfully designated, the principal must appoint an agent and provide him/her a copy of the document.
While you don’t have to appoint an attorney to create this document, hiring one during the process can ensure it is properly completed and meets state requirements. Additionally, your attorney will ensure your best interests are safeguarded if the POA has to represent you without warning. This can happen if you fall into a coma following an accident and cannot make financial decisions yourself.
Don’t wait before it is too late before appointing a POA. Get in touch with the Casement Group, P.C. for an attorney. We will ensure the process is properly completed and meets all state requirements in Elgin, Illinois. We are dedicated when it comes to protecting the rights of our clients by giving them personalized representation and services. Get in touch with us for a consultation by calling 847-888-9300 today. We can also help you create a last will and testament.