The Illinois NAELA Legislative Committee has been hard at work reviewing and tracking hundreds of bills during the 2019 Spring Session of the Illinois General Assembly. Below are a few items of particular interest.
Grace B. Hou has been appointed as the new Secretary Designate of the Illinois Department of Human Serviceshttp://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=31249
BILLS OF INTEREST
ABLE Accounts – HB 2837 & SB 1387
This bill makes technical amendments to the State Treasurer Act and it amends the Probate Act. This bill will make it easier for the establishment of ABLE accounts by allowing the guardian of the person for a minor child or the guardian of the person of an adult with disabilities (if there is no guardian of the estate) to not only create an ABLE account, but to also have the authority to transfer funds to an ABLE account.
Advance Directives Registry – SB 182
Illinois NAELA is working with the bill sponsor and other key parties regarding this bill. There are two main parts to this bill. First, it provides for the Illinois Department of Public Health to do a feasibility study regarding the creation of an Illinois registry of advance directives and POLST forms. The second part of the bill provides for the creation of advance directives in an electronic format. Recent amendments have been made to add a national bar association with an Illinois chapter that concentrates on elder law and disability law to be on the registry’s task force, therefore, we hope to have Illinois NAELA appointed in that role.
GAL Fees – HB 2816This bills amends the Adult Guardianship Article of the Probate Act. It deletes language providing that if the respondent is unable to pay the fee of the guardian ad litem or appointed counsel, or both, the court may enter an order for the petitioner to pay all such fees or such amounts as the respondent or the respondent's estate may be unable to pay. Instead, it provides that the allocation of guardian ad litem fees is within the discretion of the court. Illinois NAELA had concerns with this bill and has reached out to the bill sponsor regarding the concerns and proposed alternative language.