Phone 734.769.9300

Elder Law

Powers of Attorney and Patient Advocate Designations

Though none of us want to think about it, the time may come when you will be unable to make your own decisions.  Planning ahead for this possibility allows you to choose who will make decisions for you if necessary.  Through a Power of Attorney you can grant the power to make legal and financial decisions to a person of your choosing.  Through a Patient Advocate Designation (also known as a Health Care Power of Attorney or Living Will) you can grant the power to make medical decisions, including end of life decisions, to the most appropriate person.  We will guide you through the process of preparing these documents which is also the process of considering how you want these decisions made for you, expressing your preferences and considering who would be best able to handle the responsibility.        If a person does not have these documents in place and becomes unable to make decisions, their loved ones will have to petition the appropriate Probate Court to appoint a guardian and/or a conservator to make decisions on the person’s behalf.  The Court may designate a family member or a professional guardian/conservator.  This is a public court proceeding that costs time and money and could lead to disagreements amongst family members and delay the ability for important decisions to be made on your behalf.

You are never too young or too healthy to have these documents in place.  And they can always be amended if you change your mind.

Aging in Place

Many people prefer to continue living at home and/or with loved ones rather than moving to a care center, but face the challenge of needing more care in order to do so.  We can help you identify services to make it possible to remain in place.  There are Medicaid programs specifically designed for this purpose (MI Choice Waiver, PACE, etc.) for those who are eligible as well as private-pay services.

Medicaid Planning/Applying for Medicaid

With local full time Nursing Home care costs for 2019 in the range of $108,000 to $168,000 per year many people find themselves needing Medicaid assistance to pay for this care.  We can help you plan in advance if there is a likelihood that you will need to apply for Medicaid in the future or assist with applying for Medicaid now.

Veteran’s Benefits

Those who’ve served our country may be eligible for benefits to help with care needs.  If you have applied and been denied benefits we can help you appeal the decision.  Attorney Sarah Schairbaum is accredited by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).