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Can I delegate someone to be guardian while I'm alive?
In Indiana, you can create a guardian power of attorney that maintains its effect for a year regardless of whether the person suffers from incapacity or a developmental disability. That's because both terms are included in the probate code under the definition of "incapacity."
In Michigan, there is no “guardian power of attorney” for individuals with developmental disabilities, though there is law for a guardian power of attorney if the ward suffers from “incapacity.” Rather, in Michigan, a person with a developmental disability must have a “standby guardian” appointed at the time the guardian is appointed.
Can I delegate someone to be guardian after I die?
In Michigan, you can have the court determine a “standby guardian” whose powers come into effect immediately upon your passing or incapacity. This power continues without the individual having to follow up with a petition to become the ward’s guardian. Furthermore, if your child is still a minor when you pass, you can designate a person to act as guardian in your will, which will give that person authority to act as guardian until the individual reaches 18 years of age.
In Indiana, you can make a written designation for a person to become a “standby guardian” in the event of your death or incapacity. But the power lasts for only 90 days. The “standby guardian” must file a petition with the court to become the guardian within the 90 days to preserve his/her powers. If he/she does so, the powers will continue until the court rules on the issue. Recognize, however, that simply because you designated this person to take over, doesn’t mean the court will agree that this person is suitable for the position.
Contact our attorneys to discuss your family's needs. Our experienced lawyers have been assisting clients with their legal needs in both Michigan and Indiana since 1978. We offer the communities we proudly serve a high level of knowledge and competence at a value that larger firms cannot compete with. Call us today and schedule a consultation to learn how we can help your family protect your loved one.*
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