Illinois Power of Attorney for Health Care
UPDATED: December 15, 2019
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In Illinois, power of attorney for health care is called an Illinois Power of Attorney for Health Care and it enables the person of your choice to make healthcare decisions for you should you become incapacitated.
Power of attorney in Illinois allows you to decide which healthcare choices your representative (or agent) is allowed to make for you. You may allow your agent to make all your decisions for you, or you may specify which procedures or treatments you wish to be carried out.
Your Illinois Power of Attorney for Health Care form must be signed by you and two witnesses. If you are unable to sign, a witness may sign for you if you are present and the witness has your permission. One of the witnesses must be someone other than your spouse or a blood relative. Your agent also may not be a witness.
Your agent must be an adult, 18 years or older. You may not name any of your health care providers as an agent, unless the person is related to you.
When Your Illinois Power of Attorney for Health Care Goes Into Effect
The Power of Attorney for Health Care will go into effect if and when your physician determines that you will not be able to make decisions about your health care. A second physician must come to the same conclusion.
The Importance of Making Your Wishes Known
Your Illinois Power of Attorney for Health Care authorizes your agent to make all decisions regarding your health care in accordance with your wishes and within the bounds of the law. If you have specific instructions for your agent, you may put them in writing to assure they are carried out to your specifications.
Treatments and Procedures
If you do not limit the health care decisions your agent can make for you, your agent will have the authority to make choices for you on matters such as:
- Any procedures, treatments, and/or medications that are performed, including specific approval of any tests performed or whether or not to use life-support equipment
- Selecting the doctors that treat you as well as discharging any doctor that is treating you
- Deciding whether or not you will be resuscitated in the event you stop breathing or your heart stops
Filing the Illinois Power of Attorney for Health Care Form
The state of Illinois provides a statutory short form online for power of attorney for health care. If you have additional questions about the specific details of making your power of attorney decision and designating an agent, talk to an experienced Illinois estate planning lawyer today.