Do you know who will handle your affairs if you are incapacitated or otherwise unable to do so yourself? If you do not have a durable power of attorney, the state may dictate who can step in and handle your affairs if you are disabled or incapacitated. In some cases, your loved ones may need to hire an injury attorney and petition the court in order to make simple financial decisions for you if you are unable to do so. With a durable power of attorney, you can choose who will be in control of your financial affairs should you be unable to do so for whatever reason.
Guardianship and Conservatorship Proceedings
If you become incapacitated for whatever reason and you are unable to make decisions for yourself, you want to know that your loved ones can step in to take care of you and your finances if necessary. Unfortunately, without a durable power of attorney, your loved ones will likely need to file petitions with the court requesting that the court appoint someone to act on your behalf.
These proceedings are time-consuming and can be costly depending on the circumstances. They require someone to prove that you are unable to handle your own affairs. Having a durable power of attorney will save time, money and will keep the decision of who will handle your financial affairs in your hands and not in the hands of a judge.
Power of Attorney vs. Durable Power of Attorney
When you appoint a power of attorney, you are giving that person certain powers to act on your behalf. You can limit those powers or give them broad powers to do whatever you can legally do in your name on your own behalf. In order for the person you appoint to act on your behalf should you become incapacitated, you must use a durable power of attorney.
A simple power of attorney will become invalid if you should become incapacitated; however, a durable power of attorney survives even if you cannot act on your own behalf for whatever reason. This is very important because you want the person you name as your durable power of attorney to be able to handle your financial affairs if you cannot do so. This eliminates the necessity of a court action and a judge deciding who will manage your financial affairs in the event of incapacitation.
Consulting a Lawyer to Draft a Durable Power of Attorney
Because you are giving someone a great deal of authority to manage your financial affairs and, in some cases, complete authority, it is imperative that you seek the legal advice of an attorney who routinely drafts durable power of attorneys. An injury attorney will discuss the pros and cons of a durable power of attorney, the powers you may want to exclude from a power of attorney and the requirements for a valid durable power of attorney.
You are taking a very important step to protect yourself, your loved ones, and your property should you become incapacitated. Do not trust such an important step to an online forms directory, a book that you buy online, or an attorney who does not understand the laws governing durable powers of attorney. The lawyers of Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols are here to help you as you take this very important step to protect yourself and your property.
Contact Our Office for a Consultation with an Experienced Estate Planning Illinois Attorney
The attorneys of Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols represent individuals who need experienced estate planning attorneys. We serve clients throughout McLean, Woodford, Tazewell, and Peoria counties by providing compassionate, competent legal services. You can contact our office at 309-938-4838 to schedule a free consultation.
When you need the assistance of an experienced attorney in Central Illinois, call the knowledgeable and skilled attorneys of Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols. We are dedicated to giving our clients exceptional service and support.