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Advance Healthcare Planning
Michigan Advance Healthcare Directive 

Michigan Advance Healthcare Directive 


Jennifer Mcgee


Updated on  

November 22, 2022

8 Mins


When a person chooses to make a Living Will, along with the Medical Power of Attorney, these two legal documents become an Advance Directive. 

An Advance Directive may include your sign, names of witnesses, their signatures, etc. in adherence to your state’s requirements. Every state has different requirements to be followed. Some states ask for witnesses and notaries, others look for different criteria to be followed. 

Likewise, some states consider Living Will and Advance Directive as different and separate documents, whereas others consider both documents the same. In some states, Living Will and Advance Directive are used interchangeably. 

In this article, you will get a complete guide for making an Advance Directive for Healthcare in Michigan.  

Legal Requirements for a valid Advance Directive

  • Written by the grantor/declarant (i.e. the maker of an Advance Directive): Yes
  • Grantor must be:
  • Above the age of 18 years: Yes/if under the age of 18, is married or is the parent of a child.
  • Sound mind and memory: Yes
  • Signed by the grantor: Yes
  • Signed by Patient Advocate/Agent: Yes
  • Patient Advocate/agent accepts his role in writing: Yes
  • Witness required: Yes
  • Number of witnesses: 2
  • Signed by the witnesses: Yes
  • Number of documents required: 2
  • Other names for a Healthcare Power of attorney: Patient Advocate Designation
  • Other names for a Living Will: Michigan doesn’t require a separate document of Living Will which is included in Michigan’s Patient Advocate Designation.
  • Proxy can decide on mental health issues: Yes

Who can be your witnesses in the Michigan Advance Directive?

Anyone can be your witness in Michigan if;

  • He is an adult i.e., above 18 years of age, and
  • He is a sound-minded person which means that he can understand the consequences of making an Advance Directive and the laws applied to it.

Note: Your witnesses cannot be: 

  • Your healthcare proxy/agent i.e. your Patient Advocate,
  • Related to you by blood, adoption, or marriage i.e., your spouse, parent, child, grandchild, or sibling,
  • Entitled to a share in the estate on your death, (at least one witness)
  • Your supervising health care/mental healthcare provider/ his employee,
  • The operator or an employee of a community care facility,
  • An employee of your life or health insurance provider. 
Advance Directive Michigan

Who can be your Proxy/Patient Advocate in the Michigan Advance Directive?

Anyone can be your Proxy/Patient Advocate in Michigan if;

  • He is an adult i.e., above 18 years of age, and
  • He is a sound-minded person which means that he can understand the consequences of making an Advance Directive and the laws applied to it.

Other than the above legal requirements, the Proxy/Agent should be:

  • Trustable to adhere to your wishes and intentions.
  • Trustable to defend you if there’s any disagreement about your medical care.
  • He wanted to be your Attorney in Fact of his own free will to take care of your health affairs.
  •  He should not be your doctor or one of the caretakers.

Your Patient Advocate Designation form will be valid after you and your witnesses sign it. However, your patient advocate and alternate (if any) must receive a copy of your document and date and sign an acceptance of his or her responsibilities before making any decisions on your behalf.

Note: You can appoint an Alternate Patient Advocate as well. The alternative Proxy/Patient Advocate will step in if the first person you name as a proxy is unable, unwilling, or unavailable to act for you or if you decide to revoke his authority.

Learn about the requirements of Michigan Last Will and Testament and Michigan Last Will and Testament Template.

When does an Advance Directive come into effect in Michigan?

In Michigan, an Advance Directive becomes legally valid but doesn’t come into effect on signing the form by the grantor, proxy, and witnesses. 

An Advance directive comes into effect only when the doctor declares that you are incapable of deciding on your own and have become debilitated due to illness or injury.

Note: Your Michigan Advance Directive will not be effective in any medical crisis or emergency unless you are declared incapacitated to understand and communicate your wishes and consent by your doctor.

How can an Advance Directive be revoked?

You can revoke or terminate your Michigan Advance Directive at anytime by in any way to convey your intention to revoke an Advance Directive aka Patient Advocate Declaration, for instance:

  • A written revocation,
  • An Electronic revocation,
  • An oral revocation in presence of your agent/physician,
  • Tearing, burning, and obliterating or destroying the document in any other way,
  • Executing a new Advance Directive.
  • On the declarant’s death, unless he has given his patient advocate authority to donate his organs on page 3 of the form.

Note: Revocation of the Advance Directive will be effective when you communicate about it to your doctor and Patient Advocate. Your patient advocate can also resign from his or her designation and duties.

How to amend or change an Advance Directive? 

You can make changes or amend your Advance Directive at any time in Michigan but once it was witnessed and signed you have to remake a new document with the required changes. It is recommended to go through, double-check, and make sure of everything before signing the Advance Directive.

Michigan rules for changing Marital status after making your Advance Directive 

Divorce from the spouse will not make any effect on the validity of the Michigan Advance Directive unless the spouse was named as an agent in the Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare, your patient advocate's designation will be suspended during any legal proceedings that could result in such an order. However, the divorce or annulment of marriage or legal separation will revoke the Patient Advocate's power with immediate effect.

Form 1 of the Michigan Advance Directive

There are two legal documents/forms in Michigan. An Advance Directive is Form 1 (which includes Living Will and Selection of Agent) that allows you to refuse the medical treatment you would or do not prefer if there comes an event you lose the ability to make decisions. 

Form 2 is Michigan’s “After My Death,” form which allows you to make decisions regarding organ donation, whole body, and the final disposition of your remains. 

Part 1: Appointment of Healthcare Agent

In Part 1 of Form 1 you can fill this form out and provide all the details about the appointment of the Healthcare Proxy/Agent (known as the Patient Advocate in Michigan) along with the instructions to be followed by him.

On the left side of the form, you will find a gray box that contains all the instructions to help you in the application process. 

Michigan Advance Directive Sample Form


Michigan Advance Directive Sample Form


I ____________________________ (name) (address) am of sound mind, and I voluntarily make this designation. 

I designate 

(name of primary patient advocate) residing at (address) (home phone number) (work phone number) 

as my Patient Advocate to make care, custody, medical, or mental health treatment decisions for me in the event that I become unable to participate in medical treatment decisions. The determination of when I am unable to participate in medical and/or mental health treatment decisions shall be made by my attending physician and another physician or licensed psychologist. If my first choice is unable, unwilling, or not reasonably available to serve as my patient advocate, then I designate: 

(name of alternate patient advocate)

residing at (address) (home phone number) (work phone number) to serve as my patient advocate.

Part 2: Execution

You must sign in the presence of two witnesses. The details of the witnesses along with their signs are also required. 

Michigan Advance Directive Sample Form


I voluntarily sign this designation of patient advocate after careful consideration. I accept its meaning and I accept its consequences. 

Your signature: ________ Date: (your street address) (city, Michigan, zip code) 

Statement of Witnesses 

We sign below as witnesses. This designation was signed in our presence. The designator appears to be of sound mind, and to be making this designation voluntarily, and under no duress, fraud, or undue influence.

(Signature of Witness 1) (Date) Telephone Number(s)

(Signature of Witness 2) (Date) Telephone Number(s)

Part 3: Written Acceptance by the Patient Advocate/Agent

Michigan Advance Directive Sample Form


1. This patient advocate designation is not effective unless the patient is unable to participate in decisions regarding the patient's medical or mental health, as applicable. If this patient advocate designation includes the authority to make an anatomical gift as described in section 5506, the authority remains exercisable after the patient's death. 

2. A patient advocate shall not exercise powers concerning the patient's care, custody, and medical or mental health treatment that the patient, if the patient were able to participate in the decision, could not have exercised on his or her own behalf. 

3. This patient advocate designation cannot be used to make a medical treatment decision to withhold or withdraw treatment………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

10. A patient admitted to a health facility or agency has the rights enumerated in section 20201 of the public health code, 1978 PA 368, MCL 333.20201. 

I understand the above conditions, terms and responsibilities and I accept the designation as patient advocate for 

(name of primary patient advocate) Dated Signed I understand the above conditions and 

I accept the designation of successor patient advocate for 

(name of alternate patient advocate) Dated Signed

Form 2 of the Michigan Advance Directive

Michigan After Death Sample Form


Upon my death: (mark applicable box) 

[   ] I do not want to make an organ or tissue donation and I do not want my attorney for health care, proxy, or other agent or family to do so. 

[   ] I have already signed a written agreement or donor card regarding organ and tissue donation with the following individual or institution: Name of individual/institution: Pursuant to Michigan law, I hereby give, effective on my death: 

Any needed organ or parts. 

The following part or organs listed below: For (initial one): 

Any legally authorized purpose. 

Transplant or therapeutic purposes only. 

Declarant name: Declarant signature: _ Date: 

The declarant voluntarily signed or directed another person to sign this writing in my presence. 

Witness Date_______________ Address

Give photocopies of the signed original to your agent and alternate agent, doctor(s), family, close friends, clergy, and anyone else who might become involved in your health care. If you enter a nursing home or hospital, have photocopies of your document placed in your medical records. 

Be sure to talk to your agent(s), doctor(s), clergy, family, and friends about your wishes concerning medical treatment. Discuss your wishes with them often, particularly if your medical condition changes.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is an Advance Healthcare Directive Indiana?

An Advance Directive is a legal-written document about your future medical care. It is a gift to family members and friends so that they won't have to guess what you want if you no longer can speak for yourself.

Does an attorney have to draft an advance directive in Michigan?

The procedure of creating advance directives is simple, you do not require an attorney though you may choose to consult one. However, an advance directive either it is written or oral needs to be witnessed by two individuals.

Who makes medical decisions if you are incapacitated in Michigan?

Under Michigan law, incapacity means when a physician declares that the individual can longer give informed consent. Any person may designate someone to make health care decisions on their behalf should they become incapacitated in Michigan.

What are the 2 major challenges with advance directives?

Advance directives have limitations. For example, an older adult may not fully understand treatment options or recognize the consequences of certain choices in the future. Sometimes, people change their minds after expressing advance directives and forget to inform others.

How do I get a medical power of attorney in Michigan?

It is the same as creating a document of Advance Directive. Firstly, choose Your Surrogate/Acting Agent, be specific on what decisions your Power of Attorney can make for you, and fill out your Michigan Medical Power of Attorney Form. Lastly, sign your document before subscribing to witnesses and a Notary Public.
Jennifer Mcgee
Parent to five young children. Expert in Estate Planning, Probate, and Family Law Matters. Volunteer with Victim’s Advocates in the local sheriff's department...
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Hi, I’m Jennifer McGee.

Co-founder & Head of Legal at TrulyWill

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