Michigan Power of Attorney Lawyer
A Power of Attorney (POA) is a document whereby you give someone (referred to as your “agent”) written permission to help you now or in the future regarding financial decisions while you are living. A Power of Attorney is not valid once you die—it “dies” with you and then your Executor or Trustee take over.
A POA is durable if it states that it will remain in effect regardless of your subsequent incapacity. Michigan has a standard POA form that covers most basic planning needs, but many estate planning attorneys add provisions that are unique to the given situation so that the agent will have even more power and authority than the standard form provides.
You should only name someone in a POA if you have full, total and complete trust in the person because a POA is a very powerful document.
In a financial planning and Medicaid context, it is best to give a POA that conveys the broadest possible authority.
Oftentimes the Power of Attorney will give the agent the ability to make gifts of your money—this is a very useful provision, but must be tailored to your individual situation and family structure. Without an express gift- making provision, it is very difficult to transfers assets to your beneficiaries to reduce taxes or to protect your assets from nursing home costs, even though this is what you would have wanted.
Even so, gift giving provisions should not be automatically included in all POAs without first pondering the need and ramifications of such a power.
Other powers recommended include:
- Dealing with the Stat of Michigan and the IRS on all tax matters, income and gift taxes
- Accessing safe deposit boxes
- Changing Domicile
- Creating, funding and requesting distributions from revocable and irrevocable trusts
- Changing Beneficary Designations on life insurance, annuities, and retirement plans
- It is also wise to add a paragraph to the POA stating that, unless the third-party has actual notice of revocation, they amy rely on the agent's authority and include a hold harmelss or indemnification of the third-party.
Our attorneys take the time to fully understand your goals and draft a power of attorney that presents them in the most definitive manner possible.
Talk to a Lawyer About Drafting a Power of Attorney that Fits your Needs
Contact our office in Dearborn to schedule an appointment with an attorney. You can reach us by phone at 313-582-7469.