Powers of Attorney Give Flexibility & Protection
A “power of attorney” is merely a document, by which one person can designate an agent to assist them, or to act for them in matters of financial & business affairs, or in the event of incapacity.
Michigan law refers to financial/business powers of attorney as “Durable Powers”, which can be effective either immediately, or upon disability. I refer to them as financial/business powers of attorney, for clarity’s sake, and to distinguish them from medical or health care power of attorney documents.
The term “durable power” comes from MCLA §700.5501, which indicates that it is not affected by the later disability or incapacity of the “principal”, a term which refers to the one who designates another to be his agent. It seems self-evident that the reason to set up the power of attorney in the first place, is that it enables the principal’s wishes (financial or health care-related) to be carried out, even though the principal him/herself cannot carry out those wishes on their own, without the help of an agent of some type.
Importantly, in order to execute and implement either a financial power, or a medical power of attorney, one must be of sound mind. These documents cannot lawfully be signed or implemented, once the person is mentally disabled.