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COVID-19 and Durable Powers of Attorney for Health Care and Finances

The COVID-19 pandemic has rocked our world. It’s changed everything we previously thought. Kids are out of school and taking classes virtually. Parents are working from home and learning new technologies to be able to get their jobs done. There is a new sense of priority to get our things in order in case we get sick. Certainly, those of us with aging parents are considering the checklist we need to have on hand for when the time comes.

Durable Powers of Attorney for Health Care and Finances is something that should be included in that checklist. Senior citizens and vulnerable individuals (those with preexisting conditions) should take extra measures to protect themself and their family in the event of contingencies that may arise in the coming months as we continue to endure the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

It is vitally important to have durable powers of attorney for health care and finances in place. In some situations, a living trust can provide even better protection than a durable financial power of attorney. At the Probate Law Firm of Thav, Ryke and Associates, we can advise you on durable powers of attorney and their role in addressing coronavirus concerns. As you prepare your will, we encourage you to add durable powers of attorney. If you have an estate plan, locate it and find your durable powers of attorney for health care and finances. Review them and make certain that they are up to date. If you don’t have durable powers of attorney, call an attorney and put them in place now.

Michigan has specific state laws governing durable powers of attorney for health care and for financial matters, the state does not have standardized DPOA forms. To ensure the validity of your DPOAs, you should never use a do-it-yourself (DIY) service or form. When an attorney prepares the documents for you, your DPOAs take your individual situation and wishes into account. Your lawyer also ensures that the documents are legally valid under applicable Michigan laws.

If you have an out-of-state durable power of attorney, it may be (or may not be) valid in Michigan. But even if it is valid, your agent or advocate may encounter difficulty getting it honored in Michigan. You should ask a Michigan lawyer to create new durable powers of attorney that conform with specific Michigan requirements, to avoid any potential problems with out-of-state documents.

If you don’t have durable powers of attorney for health care and finances, you should contact an attorney at your earliest convenience. Putting those documents in place does not involve a complicated process in most cases.

A living trust also provides financial management of your assets owned by the trust. In fact, trusts often provide a superior approach to financial DPOAs. Additional information about living trusts is available in these blog articles: The Power of a Living Trust: Top 7 Reasons Why You Need One; The Basics of Life and Estate Planning; Are Revocable Living Trusts Only for Rich People?

We are here to assist with durable powers of attorney, a living trust, or any other legal matter. We use the latest in technology and modern resources to address the needs of our clients, while following the COVID-19 pandemic guidelines. We are able to use Zoom, Skype, FaceTime or telephone conferences for client meetings. If we can assist you or a family member, please do not hesitate to contact us. Call Andrew Thav, Jamie Ryke or any of the attorneys at our Probate Law Firm, conveniently located in Southfield, MI and Grand Rapids, MI.