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Advance Directives Attorney in Farmington Hills, Michigan

There may come a time when you can no longer make decisions on your own because of mental or physical incapacity. That is why it is important to protect yourself and your loved ones by preparing for future decisions about your medical treatment in advance. This can be done with an advance directive or living will.  

Without proper planning, your loved ones could be left to make tough decisions for you when you can no longer communicate your wishes. From his office in Bingham Farms, Michigan, Steven L. Rotenberg helps clients plan for the future and ensure that their wishes are carried out and healthcare preferences are honored. The advance directives attorney at Steven L. Rotenberg, PLLC also serves clients throughout the metro Detroit area, including Monroe, Mount Clemens, and Pontiac.

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What Is an Advance Directive (Living Will)?  

The term “advance directive” is used to describe legal documents that address a person’s future medical care. One of the most common examples of an advance directive document is a living will.  

Advance directives are created to inform family members and healthcare providers about one’s preferences for medical care. In other words, an advance directive comes in the form of written instructions that should be followed by family members and care providers when you are unable to communicate your wishes or make decisions on your own.  

The three most common advance directives documents include: 

  • A living will 

  • A healthcare power of attorney 

  • A do-not-resuscitate (DNR) directive 

Each document serves a different purpose. While a living will and a DNR allow you to spell out your decisions in advance, a healthcare power of attorney allows you to appoint someone who would make decisions on your behalf.  

Healthcare Representative (Patient Advocate) 

In Michigan, a healthcare power of attorney is commonly referred to as a “patient advocate” designation. Your patient advocate can consent or withdraw consent to medical care, procedures, treatment, and life-sustaining services.  

You need to use an official form to appoint a patient advocate who would make medical decisions for you when you can no longer make decisions on your own. Under Michigan law, you can appoint anyone over the age of 18 to serve as your patient advocate. This could be your spouse, adult child, siblings, friend, or anyone else.  

Make sure that you inform the selected person of your plans to appoint them as your healthcare representative before signing the document. An estate planning attorney in Bingham Farms, Michigan, can help you handle the paperwork and legal issues of appointing a patient advocate.  

Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Directive  

A do-not-resuscitate (DNR) directive is a legally-binding document in which you address emergency treatment issues, such as resuscitation. As the name implies, you can use this document to inform healthcare providers that you do not want to be resuscitated if you stop breathing or your heart stops. You do not necessarily have to be terminally ill when signing the DNR directive.  

DNR directives are legally binding in Michigan and should be followed by healthcare providers in hospitals, nursing homes, and other settings. If you appoint a patient advocate with the authority to act on your behalf, they can sign a do-not-resuscitate directive for you.  

POLST (Physician Orders for
Life-Sustaining Treatment)   

Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment, commonly referred to as POLST, is a medical order in which you can specify your wishes for future life-sustaining services and procedures. This tool gives patients more control over their end-of-life care.  

Making Modifications to Your Advance Directive  

Can you change your advance directive once you sign it? Yes, Michigan law does not prevent you from making modifications to your advance directive if you want to appoint a different patient advocate or change your wishes in advance directive documents. The only requirement is that you must be of sound mind when making modifications.

Advance Directives Attorney Serving Farmington Hills, Michigan

At Steven L. Rotenberg, PLLC, the advance directives attorney in Bingham Farms, Michigan, is committed to helping clients plan ahead and achieve peace of mind knowing that their preferences for medical care are known and documented. Reach out to Steven L. Rotenberg today to get assistance with creating a legally-binding advance directive.