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Sunday, April 5, 2020

MacDonald's bill would change visitation rights for the family of an incapacitated person


By Chris Lang | Mar 8, 2020

Mich senmacdonald 1
Sen. Michael MacDonald, R-Macomb Township | Photo Courtesy of Sen. Michael MacDonald's office

A Michigan state senator wants to change rules when it comes to visiting people who are legally incapacitated.

State Sen. Michael MacDonald (R-Macomb Township) recently proposed legislation to prevent a legal guardian from blocking family members or other relatives who want to visit the incapacitated individual.

“Currently, the legal guardian of an incapacitated person in Michigan can restrict anyone — even close family members — from having any contact with their relative for any or no reason,” MacDonald said in a statement. “No one should have to go through a situation where they cannot visit an elderly loved one during their greatest time of need.”

MacDonald’s proposal does provide restrictions to allow a legal guardian to block access to an incapacitated person.

For example, the court has the leeway to determine a restriction is necessary for the safety of the incapacitated person.

Also, if there is a protection order in place, visiting rights can be denied. Additionally, if the legal guardian believes the visitor is a potential threat to the incapacitated person, a restriction can be put in place after proper documentation. 

“This is a commonsense reform to address the problem of children being denied access to a parent due to a dispute with the guardian — while also protecting our vulnerable citizens from abuse,” MacDonald said.

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Michigan Senator Michael MacDonald

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