Advance Directives In Michigan

Estate planning doesn’t have to be a daunting task. We excel in breaking down complex legal concepts into simple, understandable terms. We ensure you’re fully informed about your options, helping you make decisions that are right for you and your family. Our aim is to demystify the estate planning process, making it accessible and straightforward for everyone involved.

When it comes to estate planning, most people think only of financial matters, but the fact is that a comprehensive estate plan also provides protection for your health and other facets of your life. One tool estate planning attorneys use to safeguard health and medical interests is an advanced directive. 

At Inhulsen Law, we work closely with clients to create advance directives tailored to their specific preferences. Nothing is more important than your health, and you deserve to have your choices for care respected. We can prepare advance directives with the terms and components designed to ensure you receive the care you want in an emergency situation or any time you are not able to communicate your preferences on your own. 

What is an Advanced Directive? 

As the name implies, an advance directive is a legal document you prepare in advance, before it may be needed, and it provides direction about health care choices and medical treatment. Although there are three general types of advance directives for health care, Michigan law only recognizes two of them as binding. The third type of directive serves as more of a guideline. 

  1. A Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care is a document that authorizes someone to serve as patient advocate or agent to make health care decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated and unable to make or communicate decisions about your medical care. 
  2. A Do-Not-Resuscitate Declaration is used by medical facilities to instruct care providers about when to forgo attempts at resuscitation if your heart and breathing have stopped.
  3. A living will is a document that specifies your choices regarding the provision of life-sustaining treatment if you were to suffer from a terminal condition and be unable to communicate. This type of advance directive is not legally binding but it can provide valuable information to help your patient advocate understand what your wishes are so they can make decisions that align with your choices. 

The Importance of Having an Advanced Directive in Michigan 

The significance of advance directives cannot be overstated. In an emergency situation, having an advocate authorized to make decisions can ensure that you receive the right treatment without unnecessary delays. Having a living will prepared for guidance eliminates uncertainties for your loved ones and eases the decision-making burden on your health care advocate during stressful times. Without these directives, your treatment might be delayed or provided in a way that contradicts your preferences. Your loved ones could be required to make tough decisions about your care without knowing your preferences, which can lead to emotional conflicts and even legal disputes.

Choosing a Health Care Advocate in Michigan 

When you create a durable power of attorney for health care, you will appoint an advocate or agent to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to make these decisions on your own. This document is sometimes referred to as a health care proxy. 

This role of health care advocate can be held by any adult you trust. It is a good idea to ask the person you’ve chosen if they are willing to serve in this role and if so, to ensure that they understand your preferences for care. 

Discussing Your Wishes with Loved Ones 

Discussing your end-of-life wishes with family members can be challenging, but it’s a critical step in the process. These conversations ensure that your loved ones understand your preferences and the reasons behind them, reducing potential conflicts or doubts during emotional times. If you have prepared a living will to provide guidance, this can help serve as a written reference that your loved ones and health care advocate can use to reaffirm your choices. 

Establishing and Reviewing Your Advance Directives in Michigan

In Michigan, an advanced directive must meet specific legal requirements to be valid. Among other factors, the person executing the directives must be of sound mind, and the document must be executed with appropriate witnesses. At Inhulsen Law, we prepare documents that fully comply with all requirements and that are drafted in language designed to withstand any legal challenge. 

It is important to review and, if necessary, update your advance directives periodically. Changes in health, family dynamics, or personal beliefs can all warrant a revision of your documents.

Taking the Next Step Toward Comprehensive Estate Planning with the Help of Inhulsen Law 

Preparing the right advance directives is an act of kindness to yourself and your loved ones. You can ensure the integrity of your medical care by authorizing a loved one to make decisions on your behalf with a health care power of attorney. By making your wishes known with a living will, you protect your family from the added stress of making difficult decisions. At Inhulsen Law, we understand the importance of these documents and are here to assist you in creating a plan that reflects your wishes and needs.

If you’re considering advanced directives in Michigan, or if you have any questions about estate planning, contact Inhulsen Law today to schedule an initial consultation. You can fill out our online form or call us at (616) 747-0000. We look forward to assisting you in making strategic decisions for your future and ensuring your estate planning is comprehensive and tailored to your unique situation.

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