New York revised its statutory power of attorney short form. The effective date is June 13, 2021. The new form must be used on and after June 13.

Some title companies and other sources are circulating the new form. So a question came up: Can you use the new form right now, before June 13? The answer is no. The new form is effective June 13. If you use it before June 13, you will not have a statutory short form power of attorney under current law. Banks and other institutions are more likely to reject a non-statutory form, and a non-statutory form will not be grandfathered under the law that takes effect on June 13.

New York’s new statutory short form power of attorney is shorter and has some significant changes:

  • The Major Gift Rider has been eliminated. (NY General Obligations Law § 5-1514 was repealed.)

  • The principal’s signature must be witnessed by two disinterested witnesses, and it must be signed in front of a notary (i.e., acknowledged).

    • The notary may act as one of the witnesses.
    • The witnesses must not be named in the instrument as agents.
    • Also, the witnesses must not be named as permissible recipients of gifts.