The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.

630-409-8184

1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

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How Is an Illinois Power of Attorney Different From Legal Guardianship?

Posted on in Guardianship

Batavia guardianship attorney

It has often been said that the only two things in life that are certain are death and taxes. While this is true, there is also one other thing that is certain: everyone gets older and will eventually need assistance with daily tasks and/or making decisions. When that time comes, it is important to have the correct legal documents and orders in place, such as a guardianship or power of attorney, in order to protect yourself and maintain a good quality of life.

Powers of Attorney

A power of attorney (POA) is a legally binding document that gives a designated person (referred to as your "agent") the ability to act on your behalf if you become incapacitated. There are two types of power of attorney. Power of attorney for healthcare allows a person to make decisions about medical care or other personal needs, while power of attorney for property allows a person to make decisions about financial matters and the property or assets you own.

For a POA to be valid, you must have the capacity to understand that you are giving someone else certain decision-making responsibilities and power. You can customize a POA to tailor the powers and permissions to fit your specific situation. The POA can instruct your agent to do or not do certain things once it goes into effect. It is important to emphasize that a POA must be drafted and signed while you are still in good mental health; it cannot be created after you have already become incapacitated.

Legal Guardianships

Legal guardianship is a more restrictive form of help that is available to individuals who need personal or financial assistance. The appointment of a legal guardian involves the court system, and if you are looking to have someone appointed as your guardian, it will typically be necessary to demonstrate to the court that you are unable to fully care for yourself or that you need assistance in meeting your needs. As with power of attorney, there are two types of guardianship. Guardianship of the person allows a guardian to address a person's medical and personal needs, while guardianship of the estate allows a guardian to handle a person's financial matters and property. If you are looking to have a person named as your legal guardian, you can work with an attorney and the court to ensure that your guardian has the necessary powers to meet your needs, while allowing you to retain as much independence as possible.

Contact a Batavia Family Law Attorney 

In some cases, having guardianship or power of attorney in place is a good idea if you need assistance meeting your personal or financial needs. If you think that a POA or a guardian might be necessary for your situation, you should speak with a DuPage County guardianship lawyer as soon as possible. At the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams P.C., we understand the legal proceedings involved in guardianships and powers of attorney, and we will work with you to ensure that your rights are protected and that you receive the care and assistance you need. To set up a time to discuss your individual case, call our office today at 630-409-8184.

 

Sources:

https://www.aarp.org/content/dam/aarp/lce/resources/dc-guardianship-vs-powers-of-attorney.pdf

https://www2.illinois.gov/sites/gac/OSG/Documents/GuideAdultGuardianship2011.pdf

 

The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.

630-409-8184

1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

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