A legal arrangement known as the durable power of attorney allows signees to designate another person to legally make health care decisions on their behalf. Usually, this legal document is drafted in advance of any debilitating medical condition that may leave the patient unable to properly communicate his or her medical preferences, such as whether to remain on artificial life support. Michigan durable power of attorney laws give the designate individual the power to withhold or withdraw life-saving treatment, as long as such wishes are clearly articulated in a living will.
The main provisions of Michigan's durable power of attorney laws are listed in the following chart. See FindLaw's Health Care Power of Attorney section to learn more.
|Code Section||§700.5501 et seq. Uniform Durable Power of Attorney Act|
|Specific Powers, Life-Prolonging Acts||Designation may include statement of patient's desires on care, custody, and medical treatment decisions (effective only when patient is unable to participate in medical treatment decisions); may authorize patient advocate to exercise 1 or more powers concerning patient's care, custody, and medical treatment that patient could have exercised on own behalf. Patient advocate may make decision to withhold or withdraw treatment which would allow patient to die only if patient has expressed in a clear and convincing manner that patient advocate is allowed to do so and that patient acknowledges that such a decision would allow death|
|Legal Requirements for Durable Power of Attorney||(1) 18 yrs.; (2) sound mind; (3) signed in writing; (4) in the presence of and signed by 2 witnesses; (5) proposed patient advocate must sign acceptance; (6) executed voluntarily; (7) made part of patient's medical record before implementation; (8) exercisable only when patient is unable to participate in decisions; (9) cannot be used for pregnant patient|
|Revocation of Durable Power of Attorney||(1) Revocable at any time and in any manner sufficient to communicate intent by patient to revoke; (2) resignation or removal of patient advocate; (3) subsequent designation that revokes prior designation, either expressly or by inconsistency; (4) divorce revokes designation of patient advocate in former spouse; (5) death of patient; (6) order of probate court; (7) occurrence of provision for revocation contained in designation; (8) any current desires of patient are binding on patient advocate|
|Validity from State-to-State||-|
|If Physician Unwilling to Follow Durable Power of Attorney||Physician or health care provider is bound by sound medical practice and instructions of patient advocate if patient advocate complies with law|
|Immunity for Attending Physician||Person providing, performing, withholding, withdrawing medical treatment reasonably relying on decisions of patient advocate is liable in same manner and to same extent as if patient had made decision on his or her own behalf|
Note: State laws are constantly changing -- contact a Michigan estate planning attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
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