Legal Question in Elder Law in Michigan

My mother who has ALzhimers diseas has recently been declared incompetant by her neurologist. HE said she no longer can live by herself, drive or make any decision. WE have all this documentation, but of course she refuses to go anywhere, or refuses to ahve any one come into her house to care for her. My sister has finacail rights over her. My brother is her DPOA, can he place her somewhere, does he have that right? What actions do we need to take now?

Asked on 4/30/10, 6:08 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Sanford Mall, JD, CELA Mall Malisow & Cooney, PC

If your mother is unwilling to cooperate, the DPOA will not be effective for placement purposes. The legal alternative to "force" her into a proper and safe placement would be to obtain Guardianship. However, before proceeding to Probate Court, I recommend seeking the counsel of an experienced elder law attorney in her area. Perhaps your mother would be willing to meet with an attorney to help protect her rights and to help make sure that her wishes are fully understood. Often we find that a parent is unwilling to listen to the child but may be quite open to having a professional make the same recommendations. In my experience, when approached in a way that her dignity and self-respect is maintained and honored, she may surprisingly agree to the needed changes. If not, or if she is determined by the attorney to lack capacity, then petitioning the Court for Guardianship is still an option.

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Answered on 5/05/10, 5:38 pm

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