Illinois Law on Supported Decision-Making

Illinois Law on Supported Decision-Making

By Dutton Casey & Mesoloras

Please note: this post is for educational purposes only.

Governor Pritzker signed the Supported Decision-Making Act (Public Act 102-0614) on August 27, 2021, with an effective date of 6 months or February 27, 2022. 

Supported decision-making is meant to be a way in-between guardianship for a person with a disability. It allows that person to appoint an Identified Supporter whose duty is to support the person with a disability in making decisions, including health decisions, living choices, work or relationship choices. It gives the person with a disability a choice in their representative while keeping their autonomy.  

The Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission released a fact sheet that reviews what supported decision-making is, when it happens, and some basic principles to follow. 

As the fact sheet outlines, supported decision-making: 

  • It is a way for a person with a disability to get the help they need by thinking about options, making choices, and letting others know what decisions they made 
  • Involves an Identified Supporter as a helper  
  • Increases power and control in the life of a person with a disability 
  • Can lead to better health and well-being of a person with a disability and improve family and community relationships around them 

What is an Identified Supporter?  

  • An Identified Supporter is someone the person with a disability knows and trusts 
  • They can be a friend, family member, coworker, colleague, or a person with professional skills 

How Supported Decision-Making Works 

  • The person with a disability fills out a form called a Supported Decision-Making Agreement which involves: 
  • Outlining what support is needed based on the person’s needs and wants 
  • Making sure that decisions are made by the person with a disability 
  • Being signed by the person with a disability, the Identified Supporter, and two (2) witnesses. 

It should be noted that the Act is very broad in terms of the capacity of the person with a disability. If there is any concern over the decision-making capability of an individual, having a professional assessment is always recommended. 

At Dutton Casey & Mesoloras, we make sure to stay on top of new laws and regulations so we may best serve our clients. This is one way we advocate for people with a disability and their families. For more information, please contact us at 312-899-0950.  

 

This information is not to be considered legal advice.  

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