Who Needs a New York Power of Attorney?

Signing the Contract

If you are entering into a New York real estate transaction, business transaction, banking transaction, etc., and are unavailable to sign the contracts, here is some important information. If a real estate closing must be scheduled for a date when you will be out of town, and you are therefore unable to sign the deed, co-op documents, mortgage documents, etc. a New York Power of Attorney may be the solution.

Alternatively, a New York Power of Attorney document can be useful for an elderly or ill person who may be unable to take care of their financial affairs or estate planning on their own. The same is true for someone who is concerned that they might become mentally or physically unable to manage their own financial affairs at some future point in time. 

A New York Power of Attorney Should Be Prepared and Executed Properly in Order to Be Enforceable in New York

Keep in mind that the official New York State Power of Attorney form is a multi-page document that must be prepared and executed properly in order to be enforceable within the state of New York. It is therefore recommended that a lawyer in NY prepare the document for you, and verify that it is executed properly so as to ensure it will be valid and enforceable within the state. 

Can a NY Power of Attorney Be Signed Outside of New York State?

It is indeed possible to have a Power of Attorney for use in NY prepared by a NY practicing lawyer and executed outside New York State by the principal granting the power. However, there are specific rules for having these documents notarized outside of the state of New York.  Not everyone in New York is aware of these rules, and as such sometimes people might accept a signature notarized outside of the state, irrespective of whether those rules were followed. Nevertheless, it is therefore advised and it is not recommended that clients count on the possibility that someone might not notice that the rules were not followed.  It would certainly be a better practice to have a Power of Attorney for NY properly executed either in New York State, or in another state, making sure that rules governing notarization outside New York State are complied with in all cases.  

It is also possible to have a state of New York POA document signed outside of the United States, provided that the rules governing execution of New York documents in another country are followed.

What Powers Should Your Power of Attorney Grant to the Agent?

The New York Power of Attorney has many options regarding what types of documents an agent may execute on a client’s behalf.  For example, a client’s attorney can prepare the document to give the agent broad powers to act on the client’s behalf for virtually all purposes, or only for certain types of documents or transactions, such as real estate transactions, banking transactions, execution of tax returns, etc.  In addition, the NY POA can be specifically limited to a particular transaction or document.  Conversely, it is important that the NY state (POA) Power of Attorney grant sufficient power to said agent, to ensure that he or she will be able to complete the transaction on the person’s behalf. For example, if you are designating an agent to execute closing documents for you for a real estate transaction, it would not be sufficient to check the box for real estate transactions since other documents will need to be executed at the time of closing, which would not be classified as real estate documents.  A New York lawyer familiar with the the state's designated Power of Attorney, as well as New York real estate transactions should be able to properly prepare the New York Power-of-Attorney required for the agent to close a real estate transaction on your behalf.

Poa Can Be Prepared So it Grants Only the Necessary Authority to The Agent

Since the New York State POA can potentially grant unlimited authority to the agent, it is strongly recommend that clients discuss the document with a NY estate lawyer (who is familiar with this area of law) in order to carefully determine how this vital document should be drafted.  It is also recommend that the document be drafted in such a way that it grants only the necessary authority to your agent, so that he or she can execute the documents needed to complete the transactions, or other business that needs to be conducted while the client is unavailable.

When Will Your Power-of-Attorney Become Effective?

You and your lawyer can decide whether your New York State Power of Attorney documentation will be effective immediately upon its execution, or alternatively, whether it will only become effective in the event that the principal becomes mentally or physically incapacitated.  Of course, this determination will be based upon your particular needs and specific circumstances.


For more information on the New York Power of Attorney, please visit our website at: http://www.nycestatelawyers.com

Copyright 2015 Law Offices of Michael W. Goldstein

This informative article provided courtesy of Law Offices of Michael W. Goldstein, a NYC estate lawyer focused on wills, trusts & estate documents, estate administration and probate, as well as other Surrogate's Court proceedings. Michael W. Goldstein is an attorney in New York City with years of dedicated service to clients throughout New York State. Michael can be contacted via email or phone ((212) 571-6848 for consultation. Information provided here is strictly educational and while accurate at the time it is written, makes no guarantees or representation expressed or implied. Each case is unique, therefore each client should seek legal advice from a New York Wills, Trusts and Estates lawyer, and should not rely upon the general content provided in this article.  Direct personal legal consultation is highly recommended.

Silver Rock Partners works in collaboration with attorneys, accounts and other industry professionals to deliver world class estate-planning for discerning high-net-worth clients. Visit SilverRockPartners.com today to learn more.