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Missouri v. Illinois: Power of Attorney

By: Attorney Shira Truitt

A power of attorney (POA) is a legal document that allows someone, known as the "principal," to appoint another person, known as the "agent" or "attorney-in-fact," to act on their behalf. The POA can be used for a variety of purposes, such as managing financial affairs, making healthcare decisions, or handling real estate transactions. It is important to understand the differences between a POA in Missouri and Illinois, as the laws governing these documents vary by state.

In Missouri, a POA can be either durable or nondurable. A durable POA remains in effect even if the principal becomes incapacitated, while a nondurable POA is automatically terminated if the principal becomes incapacitated. In Illinois, a POA can be either general or limited. A general POA gives the agent broad authority to act on the principal's behalf, while a limited POA restricts the agent's authority to specific tasks or decisions.

One significant difference between Missouri and Illinois is the requirement for a POA to be witnessed or notarized. In Missouri, a POA must be signed by the principal and two witnesses, while in Illinois, a POA does not need to be witnessed but must be notarized.

Another difference is the requirement for a POA to be registered. In Missouri, a POA does not need to be registered unless it pertains to real estate transactions. In Illinois, a POA must be filed with the county clerk's office in the county where the principal resides.

It is important to carefully consider the terms of a POA and choose an agent who is trustworthy and capable of handling the responsibilities delegated to them. It is also advisable to consult with an attorney when creating a POA to ensure that it is properly executed and meets the requirements of the state in which it will be used.


If you need legal advice or a lawyer in Illinois or Missouri, please contact The Truitt Law Firm, LLC for assistance. For more information on The Truitt Law Firm, LLC or to schedule an appointment, please go to

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