On March 26, 2020 Governor Pritzker signed an executive order aimed at helping estate planning attorneys and their clients during the COVID-19 pandemic. The order outlines a remote signing process which modifies the rules that require witnesses to be physically present when a client signs a legal document, such as a will or power of attorney.
There are a number of requirements necessary to utilize this remote signing process, a few of which include:
- The document signing process must utilize a two-way audio-visual communication technology such as Zoom, Skype, Facetime or other similar tools. A recording of the signing must be made and retained for a period of three years.
- The signatory, witnesses, and notary public must all be physically present in the state of Illinois during the actual signing.
- The notary public must be commissioned under the laws of the state of Illinois.
Strohschein Law Group Remote Operations
Even prior to Governor Pritzker’s executive order, Strohschein Law Group sought to protect our clients from the COVID-19 virus. Recognizing that social distancing is a paramount strategy for minimizing the spread of COVID-19 in our communities, the legal team at Strohschein Law Group began utilizing audio-visual communication technology in early March and created a signing process to meet both the legal and social distancing requirements. Our “drive through” signing process allows you to sign legal documents in less than 10 minutes without leaving your car. Witnesses and notaries can also sign, from a distance, but within your presence.
“Even in the midst of a global pandemic, our clients will have a continued need to make critical personal decisions and finalize planning documents,” says Linda Strohschein, Principal Attorney and Owner of Strohschein Law Group. “In an effort to meet both our client’s need for preparing legal documents, as well as the CDC’s social distancing requirements, we devised a plan to continue our operations remotely.”
While this is a temporary order that will remain in effect for the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation related to the outbreak of COVID-19, this crisis has brought to light short comings of the current requirements. We foresee Estate Planning and Elder Law attorneys working towards a permanent solution once the immediate COVID-19 crisis is under control.
To see a copy of Governor Pritzker’s executive order, dated March 26, 2020, click here.
For assistance with legal matters during the COVID-19 pandemic contact a certified elder law attorney, such as Linda Strohschein and her team at Strohschein Law Group. To set up an appointment, contact Strohschein Law Group at 630-377-3241.