Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of SB0730
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Full Text of SB0730  102nd General Assembly

SB0730enr 102ND GENERAL ASSEMBLY

  
  
  

 


 
SB0730 EnrolledLRB102 04557 LNS 14576 b

1    AN ACT concerning civil law.
 
2    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
 
4
Article 1. General Provisions

 
5    Section 1-1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
6Electronic Wills and Remote Witnesses Act.
 
7    Section 1-5. Purpose. The purpose of this Act is to
8provide for: (1) the valid execution, attestation,
9self-proving, and probate of electronic wills, paper copies of
10electronic wills, and wills attested to by witnesses through
11audio-video communication; and (2) the valid execution,
12attestation, and witnessing of documents, other than wills,
13through audio-video communication.
 
14    Section 1-10. Applicability. Any document executed under
15this Act is executed in this State; however, executing a
16document under this Act does not automatically confer
17jurisdiction in the courts of this State.
 
18    Section 1-15. Relation to Probate Act of 1975 and common
19law. All electronic wills, paper copies of electronic wills,
20and wills attested to under this Act are subject to all

 

 

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1requirements of the Probate Act of 1975 and the common law, but
2to the extent the common law or any provision of the Probate
3Act of 1975 conflicts with or is modified by this Act, the
4requirements of this Act control.
 
5    Section 1-20. Definitions. As used in this Act:
6    "Audio-video communication" means communication by which a
7person can hear, see, and communicate with another person in
8real time using electronic means. A person's visual or hearing
9impairment does not prohibit or limit that person's use of
10audio-visual communication under this Act.
11    "Electronic record" means a record generated,
12communicated, received, or stored by electronic means for use
13in an information system or for transmission from one
14information system to another.
15    "Electronic signature" means a signature in electronic
16form that uses a security procedure under the Electronic
17Commerce Security Act and attached to or logically associated
18with an electronic record.
19    "Electronic will" is a will that is created and maintained
20as a tamper-evident electronic record.
21    "Identity proofing" means a process or service through
22which a third person affirms the identity of an individual
23through a review of personal information from public and
24proprietary data sources, including: (1) by means of dynamic
25knowledge-based authentication, including a review of personal

 

 

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1information from public or proprietary data sources; or (2) by
2means of an analysis of biometric data, including, but not
3limited to, facial recognition, voiceprint analysis, or
4fingerprint analysis.
5    "Paper copy" means a tamper-evident electronic record that
6is printed and contains the following: (1) the text of the
7document; (2) the electronic signature of the signer; (3) a
8readable copy of the evidence of any changes displayed in the
9electronic record; and (4) any exhibits, attestation clauses,
10affidavits, or other items forming a part of the document or
11contained in the electronic record.
12    "Paper document" means a document that is written or
13printed on paper.
14    "Physical presence" means being in the same physical
15location as another person and close enough to see and know the
16other person is signing a document.
17    "Presence" includes: (1) physical presence; or (2) being
18in a different physical location from another person, but
19able, using audio-video communication, to know the person is
20signing a document in real time.
21    "Remote witness" means a person attesting to a document
22who is in the presence of the signer or testator through
23audio-video communication.
24    "Rule of law" means any statute, ordinance, common law
25rule, court decision, or other rule of law enacted,
26established, or promulgated by this State or any agency,

 

 

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1commission, department, court, other authority, or political
2subdivision of this State.
3    "Signature" includes an electronic signature and an ink
4signature.
5    "Tamper-evident" means a feature of an electronic record
6by which any change to the electronic record is displayed.
 
7
Article 5. Electronic Wills

 
8    Section 5-5. Signing electronic wills.
9    (a) To be valid under this Act, an electronic will shall be
10executed by the testator or by some person in the testator's
11presence and at the testator's direction, and attested to in
12the testator's presence by 2 or more credible witnesses.
13    (b) The testator may sign the electronic will with the
14testator's electronic signature or may direct another person
15in the presence of the testator to sign the electronic will. A
16person signing at the testator's direction shall not be an
17attesting witness, a person receiving a beneficial legacy or
18interest under the will, or the spouse or child of a person
19receiving a beneficial legacy or interest under the will.
20    (c) Each witness shall sign the electronic will with an
21electronic signature in the presence of the testator after
22seeing the testator sign, seeing the testator direct another
23person in the testator's presence to sign, or seeing the
24testator acknowledge the signature as the testator's act.

 

 

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1    (d) If the will is attested to by a remote witness, the
2requirements for an attestation by a remote witness under
3Section 15-10 also apply.
 
4    Section 5-10. Revocation.
5    (a) An electronic will may be revoked in the following
6ways:
7        (1) execution of a later will declaring the
8    revocation;
9        (2) execution of a later will to the extent that it is
10    inconsistent with the prior will; or
11        (3) execution of a written instrument by the testator
12    declaring the revocation.
13    (b) If there is evidence that a testator signed an
14electronic will and neither an electronic will nor a certified
15paper copy of the electronic will can be located after a
16testator's death, there is a presumption that the testator
17revoked the electronic will even if no instrument or later
18will revoking the electronic will can be located.
 
19    Section 5-15. Digital assets and electronic commerce.
20    (a) At any time during the administration of the estate
21without further notice or, if there is no grant of
22administration, upon such notice and in such a manner as the
23court directs, the court may issue an order under the Revised
24Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (2015) for a

 

 

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1custodian of an account held under a terms-of-service
2agreement to disclose digital assets for the purposes of
3obtaining an electronic will from a deceased user's account.
4If there is no grant of administration at the time the court
5issues the order, the court's order shall grant disclosure to
6the petitioner who is deemed a personal representative under
7the Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act
8(2015).
9    (b) Except as specified in this Act, the Electronic
10Commerce Security Act does not apply to the execution or
11revocation of an electronic will.
 
12
Article 10. Certified Paper Copies

 
13    Section 10-5. Certified paper copy. Where a rule of law
14requires information to be presented or retained in its
15original form, or provides consequences for the information
16not being presented or retained in its original form, that
17rule of law is satisfied by a certified paper copy of the
18electronic record.
 
19    Section 10-10. Creation of a certified paper copy.
20    (a) A certified paper copy is a paper copy of an electronic
21record that has been certified by the person who converts the
22electronic record to a paper copy.
23    (b) The person certifying a paper copy shall state the

 

 

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1following:
2        (1) the date that the person prepared the paper copy;
3        (2) the name of the person who prepared the paper
4    copy;
5        (3) the date that the person who prepared the paper
6    copy came into possession of the electronic record;
7        (4) a description of how the person who prepared the
8    paper copy came into possession of the electronic record;
9        (5) confirmation that the paper copy is a complete and
10    correct copy of the electronic record; and
11        (6) confirmation that the electronic record is a
12    tamper-evident electronic record.
13    (c) The statements by a person who prepares a certified
14paper copy shall be made by:
15        (1) testimony before the court;
16        (2) a written statement certified under Section 1-109
17    of the Code of Civil Procedure attached to the paper copy;
18    or
19        (3) an affidavit attached to the paper copy.
20    (d) A certified paper copy of a tamper-evident electronic
21record, other than an electronic will, may be created any time
22after the signer signs the electronic record under the
23Electronic Commerce Security Act.
24    (e) A certified paper copy of an electronic will may be
25created any time after the testator signs the electronic will
26or directs another person in the testator's presence to sign

 

 

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1the electronic will.
 
2    Section 10-15. Witnessing a certified paper copy.
3    (a) A certified paper copy of an electronic record may be
4witnessed after it is prepared. The witness shall be in the
5signer's presence when the signer acknowledges the electronic
6signature as the signer's act.
7    (b) If an electronic will is not attested to by 2 or more
8credible witnesses, a certified paper copy of the electronic
9will may be attested to by witnesses in the testator's
10presence after the testator acknowledges the electronic
11signature as the testator's act.
 
12
Article 15. Remote Witnesses

 
13    Section 15-5. Remote witness for document other than a
14will.
15    (a) A person may witness any document, other than a will,
16using audio-video communication between the individual signing
17the document and the witness. The signatures may be contained
18in a single document or the document may be signed in
19counterparts. The counterparts of a document may be electronic
20records, paper copies, or any combination thereof.
21    (b) During the audio-video communication:
22        (1) the witness shall determine the identity of the
23    signer;

 

 

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1        (2) the signer of the document shall sign the
2    document; if the document is an electronic record, it
3    shall be a tamper-evident electronic record; and
4        (3) the witness shall sign the document previously
5    signed or acknowledged by the signer, or if signed in
6    counterparts, a separate witness's signature page of the
7    document.
8    (c) If the witness is signing a document in counterparts,
9then the witness's signed signature page or a copy of the same
10shall be attached to the document within 10 business days of
11the signing and before the signer's death or incapacity. The
12document becomes effective when the witness's signed signature
13page or a copy of the same is attached to the document.
 
14    Section 15-10. Remote attestation for will.
15    (a) To be valid under this Act, a will attested to through
16audio-video communication shall designate this State as its
17place of execution, be signed by the testator or by some person
18at the testator's direction and in the testator's presence,
19and be attested to in the presence of the testator by 2 or more
20credible witnesses who are located in the United States at the
21time of the attestation.
22    (b) The will being attested to by audio-video
23communication may be an electronic will, a paper copy of an
24electronic will, or a paper document. An electronic will being
25attested to shall be a single document containing all the

 

 

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1signature pages, attestation clauses, and affidavits forming a
2part of the will. A will that is a paper copy of an electronic
3will or a paper document may have separate signature pages,
4attestation clauses, or affidavits that are electronic records
5or paper documents. Separate signature pages, attestation
6clauses, or affidavits may be distributed to the witness
7before the audio-video communication.
8    (c) The testator shall sign the will or direct a person in
9the testator's presence to sign. A person signing at the
10testator's direction shall not be an attesting witness, a
11person receiving a beneficial legacy or interest under the
12will, or the spouse or child of a person receiving a beneficial
13legacy or interest under the will.
14    (d) During an audio-video communication:
15        (1) the witness shall determine the testator's
16    identity;
17        (2) the testator shall sign the will, direct another
18    person in the testator's presence to sign the will, or
19    acknowledge the signature as the testator's act; and
20        (3) the witness shall attest to the will in the
21    testator's presence.
22    (e) If the will consists of separate signature pages,
23attestation clauses, or affidavits forming a part of the will,
24the testator or a person appointed by the testator shall
25attach the witness's signed signature page, attestation
26clause, or affidavit forming a part of the will or a copy of

 

 

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1the same to the paper document containing the testator's
2signature or a paper copy of the electronic will within 10
3business days of the attestation.
 
4    Section 15-15. Determining a signer's or testator's
5identity. A witness shall determine a signer's or testator's
6identity by one or more of the following methods:
7    (1) personal knowledge;
8    (2) a government-issued identification;
9    (3) another form of identification that includes a
10photograph of the holder; or
11    (4) identity proofing.
 
12    Section 15-20. Remote witnessing and notarization during
13the COVID-19 emergency declaration.
14    (a) The purpose of this Section is to give statutory
15approval to the notary and witness guidelines provided in
16Executive Order 2020-14.
17    (b) Notwithstanding any provision of law or rule,
18effective March 26, 2020 and ending 30 days after the
19expiration of the Governor's emergency declaration regarding
20COVID-19, a notarial act or an act of witnessing, including
21when a person must "appear before", act "in the presence of",
22or any variation thereof, may be performed through means of
232-way audio-video communication technology that allows for
24direct contemporaneous interaction by sight and sound between

 

 

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1the individual signing the document, the witness, and the
2notary public.
3    (c) A notarial act satisfies the "appearing before"
4requirement under Section 6-102 of the Illinois Notary Public
5Act if the notary public performs a remote notarization via
62-way audio-video communication technology, if the notary
7public commissioned in this State is physically within the
8State while performing the notarial act and the transaction
9follows any guidance or rules provided by the Secretary of
10State in existence on the date of notarization.
11    (d) An act of witnessing and the technology used in the
12audio-video communication shall substantially comply with the
13following process:
14        (1) the 2-way audio-video communication shall be
15    recorded and preserved by the signatory or the signatory's
16    designee for a period of at least 3 years;
17        (2) the signatory shall attest to being physically
18    located in the State during the 2-way audio-video
19    communication;
20        (3) the witness shall attest to being physically
21    located in the State during the 2-way audio-video
22    communication;
23        (4) the signatory shall affirmatively state on the
24    2-way audio-video communication what document the
25    signatory is signing;
26        (5) each page of the document being witnessed shall be

 

 

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1    shown to the witness on the 2-way audio-video
2    communication technology in a means clearly legible to the
3    witness;
4        (6) the act of signing shall be captured sufficiently
5    up close on the 2-way audio-video communication for the
6    witness to observe;
7        (7) the signatory shall transmit by overnight mail,
8    fax, electronic, or other means a legible copy of the
9    entire signed document directly to the witness no later
10    than the day after the document is signed;
11        (8) the witness shall sign the transmitted copy of the
12    document as a witness and transmit the signed copy of the
13    document back via overnight mail, fax, electronic, or
14    other means to the signatory within 24 hours of receipt;
15    and
16        (9) if necessary, the witness may sign the original
17    signed document as of the date of the original execution
18    by the signatory if the witness receives the original
19    signed document together with the electronically witnessed
20    copy within 30 days from the date of the remote
21    witnessing.
22    (e) The prohibition on electronic signatures on certain
23documents in subsection (c) of Section 120 of the Electronic
24Commerce Security Act remains in full effect.
25    (f) Notwithstanding any law or rule of this State to the
26contrary, absent an express prohibition in a document against

 

 

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1signing in counterparts, all legal documents, including, but
2not limited to, deeds, last wills and testaments, trusts,
3durable powers of attorney for property, and powers of
4attorney for health care, may be signed in counterparts by the
5witnesses and the signatory. A notary public shall be
6presented with a fax or electronic copy of the document
7signature pages showing the witness signatures on the same
8date the document is signed by the signatory if the notary
9public is being asked to certify to the appearance of the
10witnesses to a document.
11    (g) Any technology issues that may occur do not impact the
12validity or effect of any instrument or document signed under
13this Section. As used in this Section, "technology issues"
14include, but are not limited to, problems with the Internet
15connection, user error related to the use of technology, the
16file containing a recorded act becoming corrupted, or other
17temporary malfunctions involving the technology used in an act
18of witnessing or a notarial act.
 
19
Article 20. Admission of Wills to Probate

 
20    Section 20-5. Electronic will. In addition to the
21requirements of Section 6-2 of the Probate Act of 1975, the
22petitioner shall state in the petition to have an electronic
23will admitted to probate that the electronic will is a
24tamper-evident electronic record and it has not been altered

 

 

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1apart from the electronic signatures and other information
2that arises in the normal course of communication, storage,
3and display.
 
4    Section 20-10. Admission of paper copy of electronic will.
5Before being admitted to probate, a paper copy of an
6electronic will shall be:
7    (1) certified under Section 10-10; or
8    (2) supported by sufficient evidence to overcome the
9presumption under subsection (b) of Section 5-10 that the
10testator revoked the electronic will.
 
11    Section 20-15. Admission of wills attested to by witnesses
12who are physically present. An electronic will or paper copy
13of an electronic will attested to by witnesses who are all in
14the testator's physical presence at the time of attestation
15shall be sufficiently proved under Section 6-4 of the Probate
16Act of 1975 to be admitted to probate.
 
17    Section 20-20. Admission of wills attested to by a remote
18witness.
19    (a) A will, other than a will signed under Section 15-20,
20attested to by one or more remote witnesses is sufficiently
21proved to be admitted to probate when each of at least 2 of the
22attesting witnesses make the statements described in
23subsection (b), and if the testator appointed a person to

 

 

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1attach any separate signature pages, attestation clauses, or
2affidavits forming a part of a paper copy of an electronic will
3or paper document, each appointed person, other than the
4testator, makes the statements described in subsection (d).
5    (b) Each attesting witness shall state that:
6        (1) the attesting witness was present and saw the
7    testator or some person in the testator's presence and by
8    the testator's direction sign the will in the presence of
9    the witness or the testator acknowledged it to the witness
10    as the testator's act;
11        (2) the will was attested to by the witness in the
12    presence of the testator;
13        (3) the witness believed the testator to be of sound
14    mind and memory at the time of signing or acknowledging
15    the will; and
16        (4) if the attesting witness is a remote witness, the
17    method used to determine the testator's identity.
18    (c) The statements of an attesting witness under
19subsection (b) may be made by:
20        (1) testimony before the court;
21        (2) an attestation clause signed by the witness and
22    attached to the will within 10 business days of the
23    execution;
24        (3) an affidavit that is signed by the witness at the
25    time of attestation and is attached to the will within 10
26    business days; or

 

 

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1        (4) an affidavit that is signed after the time of
2    attestation and is attached to an accurate copy of the
3    will.
4    (d) Any person appointed by the testator to attach to the
5will the witnesses' signed signature pages, attestation
6clauses, or affidavits forming a part of the will or copies of
7the same shall state:
8        (1) that the signed signature pages, attestation
9    clauses, or affidavits forming a part of the will or
10    copies of the same were attached within 10 business days
11    of each witness's attestation;
12        (2) that the person attached the signed signature
13    pages, attestation clauses, or affidavits forming a part
14    of the will or copies of the same to the testator's
15    complete and correct will; and
16        (3) if the signed signature pages, attestation
17    clauses, or affidavits forming a part of the will were
18    signed as electronic records, the statements required to
19    certify the paper copies of the electronic records under
20    Section 10-10.
21    (e) The statements under subsection (d) by any person,
22other than the testator, attaching the attesting witnesses
23signature pages, attestation clauses, affidavits, or copies of
24the same may be made by:
25        (1) testimony before the court;
26        (2) a written statement certified under Section 1-109

 

 

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1    of the Code of Civil Procedure that is signed and attached
2    to the will when attaching the signature pages,
3    attestation clauses, affidavits of the witnesses, or
4    copies of the same; or
5        (3) an affidavit signed at or after the time of
6    attaching the signature pages, attestation clauses,
7    affidavits of the witnesses, or copies of the same and
8    attached to the will or an accurate copy of the will.
 
9    Section 20-25. Admission of a will signed during the
10COVID-19 emergency declaration. A will attested to by a
11remote witness under Section 15-20 is sufficiently proved to
12be admitted to probate when each of at least 2 attesting
13witnesses:
14    (1) sign an attestation clause or affidavit substantially
15complying with the statements required under subsection (a) of
16Section 6-4 of the Probate Act of 1975 within 48 hours of the
17act of witnessing, and the attestation clause, affidavit, or a
18copy of the same is attached to the will signed by the testator
19or an accurate copy of the will;
20    (2) sign an attestation clause or affidavit at or after
21the act of witnessing that is attached to the will or an
22accurate copy of the will stating the testator and remote
23witness to the will substantially complied with Section 15-20
24and the remote witness believed the testator to be of sound
25mind and memory at the time of the signing; or

 

 

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1    (3) testify in court that the testator and remote witness
2substantially complied with Section 15-20 and that the remote
3witness believed the testator to be of sound mind and memory at
4the time of the signing.
 
5    Section 20-30. Evidence of fraud, forgery, compulsion, or
6other improper conduct. Nothing in this Article prohibits any
7party from introducing evidence of fraud, forgery, compulsion,
8or other improper conduct that in the opinion of the court is
9deemed sufficient to invalidate the will when being admitted.
10The proponent may also introduce any other evidence competent
11to establish the validity of a will. If the proponent
12establishes the validity of the will by sufficient competent
13evidence, it shall be admitted to probate unless there is
14proof of fraud, forgery, compulsion, or other improper conduct
15that in the opinion of the court is deemed sufficient to
16invalidate the will.
 
17    Section 20-35. Formal proof of will with remote witness
18under Section 20-20. If a will has been admitted to probate
19under Section 20-20 before notice, any person entitled to
20notice under Section 6-10 of the Probate Act of 1975 may file a
21petition within 42 days after the effective date of the
22original order admitting the will to probate to require proof
23of the will, pursuant to this Section. The court shall set the
24matter for hearing upon such notice to interested persons as

 

 

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1the court directs. At the hearing, the proponent shall
2establish the will by testimony of the relevant parties as
3provided in paragraph (1) of subsection (c) of Section 10-10,
4paragraph (1) of subsection (c) of Section 20-20, or paragraph
5(1) of subsection (e) of Section 20-20 or deposition of the
6relevant parties following the procedures in Section 6-5 of
7the Probate Act of 1975 or other evidence as provided in the
8Probate Act of 1975, but not as provided by paragraph (2) or
9(3) of subsection (c) of Section 10-10, paragraph (2) or (3) of
10subsection (c) of Section 20-20, or paragraph (2) or (3) of
11subsection (e) of Section 20-20, as if the will had not
12originally been admitted to probate. If the proponent
13establishes the will by sufficient competent evidence, the
14original order admitting it to probate and the original order
15appointing the representative shall be confirmed and effective
16as to all persons, including creditors, as of the dates of
17their entries, unless there is proof of fraud, forgery,
18compulsion, or other improper conduct that in the opinion of
19the court is sufficient to invalidate or destroy the will. The
20time for filing a petition to contest a will under Section 8-1
21of the Probate Act of 1975 is not extended by the filing of the
22petition under this Section if the order admitting the will to
23probate is confirmed, but if that order is vacated, the time
24for filing the petition under Section 8-2 of the Probate Act of
251975 runs from the date of vacation of the order admitting the
26will to probate.
 

 

 

SB0730 Enrolled- 21 -LRB102 04557 LNS 14576 b

1    Section 20-40. Formal proof of an electronic will. If a
2petition is filed for proof of an electronic will under
3Section 6-21 of the Probate Act of 1975 or Section 20-35 of
4this Act, the Court shall determine whether the electronic
5will is a tamper-evident electronic record and has not been
6altered apart from the electronic signatures and other
7information that arises in the normal course of communication,
8storage, and display.
 
9    Section 20-45. Formal proof of will witnessed during the
10COVID-19 emergency declaration. Testimony or other evidence
11at a hearing for formal proof of a will under Section 6-21 of
12the Probate of 1975 by a remote witness who witnessed the will
13under Section 15-20 shall establish the testator and remote
14witness substantially complied with the requirements of
15Section 15-20 and the remote witness believed the testator to
16be of sound mind and memory at the time of the signing. Formal
17proof of a will signed under Section 15-20 does not require
18testimony or other evidence that the remote witness attested
19to the will in the presence of the testator. Testimony by the
20remote witness that conflicts with a statement in the
21attestation clause or affidavit that the remote witness
22attested to the will in the presence of the testator does not
23affect proof of the will or the credibility of the remote
24witness.
 

 

 

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1
Article 95. Amendatory Provisions

 
2    Section 95-5. The Electronic Commerce Security Act is
3amended by changing Sections 5-115, 5-120, 5-125, and 10-130
4as follows:
 
5    (5 ILCS 175/5-115)
6    Sec. 5-115. Electronic records.
7    (a) Where a rule of law requires information to be
8"written" or "in writing", or provides for certain
9consequences if it is not, an electronic record satisfies that
10rule of law.
11    (b) The provisions of this Section shall not apply:
12        (1) when its application would involve a construction
13    of a rule of law that is clearly inconsistent with the
14    manifest intent of the lawmaking body or repugnant to the
15    context of the same rule of law, provided that the mere
16    requirement that information be "in writing", "written",
17    or "printed" shall not by itself be sufficient to
18    establish such intent;
19        (2) to any rule of law governing the creation or
20    execution of a will or trust; and
21        (3) to any record that serves as a unique and
22    transferable instrument of rights and obligations under
23    the Uniform Commercial Code including, without limitation,

 

 

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1    negotiable instruments and other instruments of title
2    wherein possession of the instrument is deemed to confer
3    title, unless an electronic version of such record is
4    created, stored, and transferred in a manner that allows
5    for the existence of only one unique, identifiable, and
6    unalterable original with the functional attributes of an
7    equivalent physical instrument, that can be possessed by
8    only one person, and which cannot be copied except in a
9    form that is readily identifiable as a copy.
10(Source: P.A. 101-163, eff. 1-1-20.)
 
11    (5 ILCS 175/5-120)
12    Sec. 5-120. Electronic signatures.
13    (a) Where a rule of law requires a signature, or provides
14for certain consequences if a document is not signed, an
15electronic signature satisfies that rule of law.
16    (a-5) In the course of exercising any permitting,
17licensing, or other regulatory function, a municipality may
18accept, but shall not require, documents with an electronic
19signature, including, but not limited to, the technical
20submissions of a design professional with an electronic
21signature.
22    (b) An electronic signature may be proved in any manner,
23including by showing that a procedure existed by which a party
24must of necessity have executed a symbol or security procedure
25for the purpose of verifying that an electronic record is that

 

 

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1of such party in order to proceed further with a transaction.
2    (c) The provisions of this Section shall not apply:
3        (1) when its application would involve a construction
4    of a rule of law that is clearly inconsistent with the
5    manifest intent of the lawmaking body or repugnant to the
6    context of the same rule of law, provided that the mere
7    requirement of a "signature" or that a record be "signed"
8    shall not by itself be sufficient to establish such
9    intent;
10        (2) to any rule of law governing the creation or
11    execution of a will or trust; and
12        (3) to any record that serves as a unique and
13    transferable instrument of rights and obligations under
14    the Uniform Commercial Code including, without limitation,
15    negotiable instruments and other instruments of title
16    wherein possession of the instrument is deemed to confer
17    title, unless an electronic version of such record is
18    created, stored, and transferred in a manner that allows
19    for the existence of only one unique, identifiable, and
20    unalterable original with the functional attributes of an
21    equivalent physical instrument, that can be possessed by
22    only one person, and which cannot be copied except in a
23    form that is readily identifiable as a copy.
24(Source: P.A. 101-163, eff. 1-1-20.)
 
25    (5 ILCS 175/5-125)

 

 

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1    Sec. 5-125. Original.
2    (a) Where a rule of law requires information to be
3presented or retained in its original form, or provides
4consequences for the information not being presented or
5retained in its original form, that rule of law is satisfied by
6an electronic record if there exists reliable assurance as to
7the integrity of the information from the time when it was
8first generated in its final form, as an electronic record or
9otherwise.
10    (b) The criteria for assessing integrity shall be whether
11the information has remained complete and unaltered, apart
12from the addition of any endorsement or other information that
13arises in the normal course of communication, storage and
14display. The standard of reliability required to ensure that
15information has remained complete and unaltered shall be
16assessed in the light of the purpose for which the information
17was generated and in the light of all the relevant
18circumstances.
19    (c) The provisions of this Section do not apply to any
20record that serves as a unique and transferable instrument of
21rights and obligations under the Uniform Commercial Code
22including, without limitation, negotiable instruments and
23other instruments of title wherein possession of the
24instrument is deemed to confer title, unless an electronic
25version of such record is created, stored, and transferred in
26a manner that allows for the existence of only one unique,

 

 

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1identifiable, and unalterable original with the functional
2attributes of an equivalent physical instrument, that can be
3possessed by only one person, and which cannot be copied
4except in a form that is readily identifiable as a copy.
5(Source: P.A. 90-759, eff. 7-1-99.)
 
6    (5 ILCS 175/10-130)
7    Sec. 10-130. Attribution of signature.
8    (a) Except as provided by another applicable rule of law,
9a secure electronic signature is attributable to the person to
10whom it correlates, whether or not authorized, if:
11        (1) the electronic signature resulted from acts of a
12    person that obtained the signature device or other
13    information necessary to create the signature from a
14    source under the control of the alleged signer, creating
15    the appearance that it came from that party;
16        (2) the access or use occurred under circumstances
17    constituting a failure to exercise reasonable care by the
18    alleged signer; and
19        (3) the relying party relied reasonably and in good
20    faith to its detriment on the apparent source of the
21    electronic record.
22    (b) The provisions of this Section shall not apply to
23transactions and documents intended primarily for personal,
24family, or household use, or otherwise defined as consumer
25transactions by applicable law including, but not limited to,

 

 

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1credit card and automated teller machine transactions except
2to the extent allowed by applicable consumer law, trust
3agreements, powers of attorney for property or health care,
4beneficiary designation forms, and deeds transferring
5residential real property.
6(Source: P.A. 90-759, eff. 7-1-99.)
 
7    Section 95-10. The Probate Act of 1975 is amended by
8changing Sections 1-2.18, 6-5, 6-6, 8-1, and 8-2 and by adding
9Sections 1-2.25 and 1-2.26 as follows:
 
10    (755 ILCS 5/1-2.18)  (from Ch. 110 1/2, par. 1-2.18)
11    Sec. 1-2.18. "Will" includes electronic will, certified
12paper copy of an electronic will, testament and codicil.
13(Source: P.A. 81-213.)
 
14    (755 ILCS 5/1-2.25 new)
15    Sec. 1-2.25. Where this Act requires information to be
16"written" or "in writing", or provides for certain
17consequences if it is not, an electronic record under the
18Electronic Wills and Remote Witnesses Act satisfies the
19provisions of this Act.
 
20    (755 ILCS 5/1-2.26 new)
21    Sec. 1-2.26. "In the presence of" and any variation
22thereof includes:

 

 

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1    (1) being in the same physical location as another person
2and close enough to see and know the other person is signing a
3document; or
4    (2) being in a different physical location from another
5person, but able, using electronic means, to see, hear,
6communicate, and know that the person is signing a document in
7real time.
 
8    (755 ILCS 5/6-5)  (from Ch. 110 1/2, par. 6-5)
9    Sec. 6-5. Deposition of witness.) When a witness to a will
10or other party who shall testify to have a will admitted to
11probate resides outside the county in which the will is
12offered for probate or is unable to attend court and can be
13found and is mentally and physically capable of testifying,
14the court, upon the petition of any person seeking probate of
15the will and upon such notice of the petition to persons
16interested as the court directs, may issue a commission with
17the will or a photographic copy thereof attached. The
18commission shall be directed to any judge, notary public,
19mayor or other chief magistrate of a city or United States
20consul, vice-consul, consular agent, secretary of legation or
21commissioned officer in active service of the armed forces of
22the United States and shall authorize and require the
23authorized person him to cause that witness or other party to
24come before the authorized person him at such time and place as
25the authorized person he designates and to take the deposition

 

 

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1of the witness or other party on oath or affirmation and upon
2all such written interrogatories and cross-interrogatories as
3may be enclosed with the commission. With the least possible
4delay the person taking the deposition shall certify it, the
5commission, and the interrogatories to the court from which
6the commission issued. When the deposition of a witness or
7other party is so taken and returned to the court, the his
8testimony of the witness or other party has the same effect as
9if the witness or other party he testified in the court from
10which the commission issued. When the commission is issued to
11the officer by his official title only and not by name, the
12seal of the his office attached to the officer's his
13certificate is sufficient evidence of the officer's his
14identity and official character.
15(Source: P.A. 95-331, eff. 8-21-07.)
 
16    (755 ILCS 5/6-6)  (from Ch. 110 1/2, par. 6-6)
17    Sec. 6-6. Proof of handwriting of a deceased or
18inaccessible witness or a witness with a disability.)
19    (a) If a witness to a will or other party who shall testify
20to have a will admitted (1) is dead, (2) is blind, (3) is
21mentally or physically incapable of testifying, (4) cannot be
22found, (5) is in active service of the armed forces of the
23United States or (6) is outside this State, the court may admit
24proof of the handwriting of the witness or other party and such
25other secondary evidence as is admissible in any court of

 

 

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1record to establish electronic records or written contracts
2and may admit the will to probate as though it had been proved
3by the testimony of the witness or other party. On motion of
4any interested person or on its own motion, the court may
5require that the deposition of any such witness or other
6party, who can be found, is mentally and physically capable of
7testifying and is not in the active service of the armed forces
8of the United States outside of the continental United States,
9be taken as the best evidence thereof.
10    (b) As used in this Section, "continental United States"
11means the States of the United States and the District of
12Columbia.
13(Source: P.A. 99-143, eff. 7-27-15.)
 
14    (755 ILCS 5/8-1)  (from Ch. 110 1/2, par. 8-1)
15    Sec. 8-1. Contest of admission of will to probate; notice.
16    (a) Within 6 months after the admission to probate of a
17domestic will in accordance with the provisions of Section 6-4
18or Section 20-20 or 20-25 of the Electronic Wills and Remote
19Witnesses Act, or of a foreign will in accordance with the
20provisions of Article VII of this Act, any interested person
21may file a petition in the proceeding for the administration
22of the testator's estate or, if no proceeding is pending, in
23the court in which the will was admitted to probate, to contest
24the validity of the will.
25    (b) The petitioner shall cause a copy of the petition to be

 

 

SB0730 Enrolled- 31 -LRB102 04557 LNS 14576 b

1mailed or delivered to the representative, to his or her
2attorney of record, and to each heir and legatee whose name is
3listed in the petition to admit the will to probate and in any
4amended petition filed in accordance with Section 6-11, at the
5address stated in the petition or amended petition. Filing a
6pleading constitutes a waiver of the mailing or delivery of
7the notice to the person filing the pleading. Failure to mail
8or deliver a copy of the petition to an heir or a legatee does
9not extend the time within which a petition to contest the will
10may be filed under subsection (a) of this Section or affect the
11validity of the judgement entered in the proceeding.
12    (c) Any contestant or proponent may demand a trial by
13jury. An issue shall be made whether or not the instrument
14produced is the will of the testator. The contestant shall in
15the first instance proceed with proof to establish the
16invalidity of the will. At the close of the contestant's case,
17the proponent may present evidence to sustain the will. An
18authenticated transcript of the testimony of any witness or
19other party taken at the time of the hearing on the admission
20of the will to probate, or an affidavit of any witness or other
21party received as evidence under subsection 6-4(b), paragraphs
22(c) and (e) of Section 20-20 of the Electronic Wills and Remote
23Witnesses Act, or Section 20-25 of the Electronic Wills and
24Remote Witnesses Act, is admissible in evidence.
25    (d) The right to institute or continue a proceeding to
26contest the validity of a will survives and descends to the

 

 

SB0730 Enrolled- 32 -LRB102 04557 LNS 14576 b

1heir, legatee, representative, grantee or assignee of the
2person entitled to institute the proceeding.
3    (e) It is the duty of the representative to defend a
4proceeding to contest the validity of the will. The court may
5order the representative to defend the proceeding or prosecute
6an appeal from the judgment. If the representative fails or
7refuses to do so when ordered by the court, or if there is no
8representative then acting, the court, upon its motion or on
9application of any interested person, may appoint a special
10administrator to defend or appeal in his stead.
11    (f) An action to set aside or contest the validity of a
12revocable inter vivos trust agreement or declaration of trust
13to which a legacy is provided by the settlor's will which is
14admitted to probate shall be commenced within and not after
15the time to contest the validity of a will as provided in
16subsection (a) of this Section and Section 13-223 of the Code
17of Civil Procedure.
18    (g) This amendatory Act of 1995 applies to pending cases
19as well as cases commenced on or after its effective date.
20(Source: P.A. 89-364, eff. 8-18-95.)
 
21    (755 ILCS 5/8-2)  (from Ch. 110 1/2, par. 8-2)
22    Sec. 8-2. Contest of denial of admission of will to
23probate.
24    (a) Within 6 months after the entry of an order denying
25admission to probate of a domestic will in accordance with the

 

 

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1provisions of Section 6-4 or Section 20-20 or 20-25 of the
2Electronic Wills and Remote Witnesses Act, or of a foreign
3will in accordance with the provisions of Article VII of this
4Act, any interested person desiring to contest the denial of
5admission may file a petition to admit the will to probate in
6the proceeding for the administration of the decedent's estate
7or, if no proceeding is pending, in the court which denied
8admission of the will to probate. The petition must state the
9facts required to be stated in Section 6-2 or 6-20, whichever
10is applicable.
11    (b) The petitioner shall cause a copy of the petition to be
12mailed or delivered to the representative, to his or her
13attorney of record, and to each heir and legatee whose name is
14listed in the petition to admit the will to probate and in any
15amended petition filed in accordance with Section 6-11, at the
16address stated in the petition or amended petition. Filing a
17pleading constitutes a waiver of the mailing or delivery of
18the notice to the person filing the pleading. Failure to mail
19or deliver a copy of the petition to an heir or legatee does
20not extend the time within which a petition to admit the will
21to probate may be filed under subsection (a) of Section 8-1 or
22affect the validity of the judgment entered in the proceeding.
23    (c) Any proponent or contestant may demand a trial by
24jury. An issue shall be made whether or not the instrument
25produced is the will of the testator. The proponent shall in
26the first instance proceed with proof to establish the

 

 

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1validity of the will and may introduce any evidence competent
2to establish a will. Any interested person may oppose the
3petition and may introduce any evidence admissible in a will
4contest under Section 8-1. At the close of the contestant's
5case, the proponent may present further evidence to sustain
6the will.
7    (d) The right to institute or continue a proceeding to
8contest the denial of admission of a will to probate survives
9and descends to the heir, legatee, representative, grantee or
10assignee of the person entitled to institute the proceeding.
11    (e) The court may order the representative to defend a
12proceeding to probate the will or prosecute an appeal from the
13judgment. If the representative fails or refuses to do so when
14ordered by the court, or if there is no representative then
15acting, the court, upon its motion or on application of any
16interested person, may appoint a special administrator to do
17so in his stead.
18    (f) A person named as executor in a will that has been
19denied admission to probate has no duty to file or support a
20petition under Section 8-2.
21    (g) This amendatory Act of 1995 applies to pending cases
22as well as cases commenced on or after its effective date.
23(Source: P.A. 89-364, eff. 8-18-95.)
 
24
Article 99. Effective Date

 
25    Section 99-99. Effective date. This Act takes effect upon

 

 

SB0730 Enrolled- 35 -LRB102 04557 LNS 14576 b

1becoming law.