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The Importance of Advance Directives in Illinois Estate Plans

Posted on in Estate Planning

Every Illinois resident that's of legal age should have an estate plan completed. Even those with relatively few assets can benefit from the utilization of some important estate planning documents - among them, advance directives such as a Power of Attorney for Health Care and a Power of Attorney for Property.

In general, a Power of Attorney (POA) is a document that gives someone (the agent) the legal right to make decisions on behalf of another person (the principal) in certain situations. There are various situations in which POAs are used, but any comprehensive estate plan should include these critical documents.

A Health Care Power of Attorney is used to designate a person to make medical and other personal decisions on your behalf should you become incapacitated. A Financial Power of Attorney serves the same purpose in regards to financial issues. As these are two separate documents, you can appoint two different people as your "agent" in each area. However, it's important that POAs are drafted correctly and in a way that is legally enforceable. Thus, it's best to work with an experienced Chicago estate planning lawyer to draft the appropriate POAs.

A helpful Chicago area estate planning attorney can also discuss other components of an effective estate plan, including a Will, a Living Will, or a Trust. Estate planning is an individual process, and the guidance of a skilled estate planning lawyer like those at Stock, Carlson & Asso. LLC LLC is invaluable in ensuring that your estate plan will function effectively when the time comes.

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