A Michigan general power of attorney (GPOA) is a legal document allowing a principal to convey various financial authorities to an agent they trust. The granted authorities can relate to the principal’s investments, benefits, insurance, taxes, property, and funds.
A general power of attorney is non-durable, meaning an agent can’t exercise their powers when the principal becomes incapacitated. If you lose your ability to communicate your financial wishes and want your agent to keep the powers you’ve given them, use a durable power of attorney.
Authority (MI Compiled Laws § 700.5501) – An agent can act on the principal’s behalf and exercise authority in any manner the principal allows. Any actions the agent executes are legally binding and have the same weight as if the principal performed them.
Signing Requirements (MI Compiled Laws § 700.5501(2) and § 700.5501(4)) – The principal must sign the document in the presence of two witnesses or a notary public. The agent must sign an acknowledgment of their responsibilities before they can exercise their powers.
Presumption of Durability (MI Compiled Laws § 700.5502) – A power of attorney has presumed durability, meaning it will remain effective if the principal becomes incapacitated. The principal can ensure the document expires by including an explicit statement declaring the powers are no longer valid if they become mentally incompetent.