Illinois General (Financial) Power of Attorney


Residents of Illinois can use the Illinois General (Financial) Power of Attorney to briefly hand over authority pertaining to one’s finances. You (the principal) can decide the extent to which your agent can act, ranging from full authority, to the right to handle something very specific (like writing checks). Being a “general” document, however, one should expect to give their agent numerous powers. If you only need one or two (2) things done in your stead, check out the limited power of attorney.


The alternative to this form is the durable POA, and while it covers similar financial decision making privilege, it is vastly different in the timeframe in which it’s used. In short, this general form will cease all effect if you can’t convey decisions to those close to you (due to a medical emergency, for example). If it were durable, it’d remain in effect, and the agent would hold onto the powers they were originally granted. Thus, the general form should be limited to those that are leaving on vacation, military duty, or another non-permanent reason. Regarding the agent, there are no limitations. However, as many legal professionals recommend, it should be someone that you could trust unequivocally without supervision. Family and very close friends are almost always a smart choice.

Signing requirements (ILCS 45/3-3) – Has to contain the signature of one (1) witness, and be signed by a notary public.