Granting Power of Attorney in New York 

Power of attorney refers to the conferring of specific responsibilities on an agent, with the purpose of having that agent carry out the principal’s will. Incapacity is just one of the reasons one would use a power of attorney. Another would be convenience. For example,  if the principal busy at work and does not want to go to a real estate closing or something else of that nature, they will have their agent go in their place.

There has to be some reason that the agent is there. It could just be convenience as opposed to inability. The process of granting power of attorney in New York can be complicated, which is why you should contact an experienced power of attorney lawyer who can simplify everything, and make sure your rights are protected.

Designating Power of Attorney

In order to start the process of granting power of attorney in New York, the principal signs a form in the presence of a notary public appointing an agent. The Agent must sign the form as well. If there are gifts involved, the principal and agent sign the document in the presence of two witnesses in addition to a notary public. The notary could be one of the witnesses.

Power of attorney is granted to a person who can be an acquaintance or a relative, and the person receiving it should recognize they have certain responsibilities and must agree to perform those responsibilities on behalf of the principal.

The person responsible for granting power of attorney is the principal and any adult is eligible. The individual who is granted power of attorney does not have to be the spouse or blood relative of the principal to be eligible.

General and Limited Power of Attorney

General power of attorney is the broadest powers that one can get and, it includes various authorizations that are permissible under the statute that would encompass subject matters like securities, real estate, contract matters, personal matters, etc.

Limited power of attorney is the opposite of general power of attorney because it involves usually granting powers to an agent for one transaction or just to handle the principal’s bank account and nothing else. The powers that are limited are whatever the principal specifies in the power of attorney.

What Limitations Are Placed Upon a Person with Power of Attorney Over Another?

They must do everything in the best interest of the Principal, and can only act within the confines of the particular document that grants them the power. In other words, it can be a limited power or it can be a general power of attorney, giving them many broad areas where they can act.

Role of the Agent

When granting power of attorney in New York, the principal has to evaluate the maturity, integrity, and intelligence of the individual that they are granting that power to.

An example of a decision that an agent can make is, if the Principal is out of town or incapacitated, the agent can attend a real estate closing and sign the documents on the Principal’s behalf, argue any discrepancies in the documents or negotiate a better price. As long as the agent is acting in the best interest of the principal.

The agent cannot act on behalf of the principal for any matters that are not authorized in the power of attorney form. The agent cannot make healthcare decisions and cannot give away or take all of the principal’s assets for no valid reason. The principal can send their agent somewhere in their stead. In fact, that is one of the primary purposes of power of attorney.

The principal can vacate the power of attorney by revoking it and a court can vacate it, finding that the agent overreached in exercising a power of attorney, or that the principal was taken advantage of, or did not have the capacity to grant a power of attorney.

Having More Than One Agent

A principal can have two individuals as agents, and they may require that they act together. Specific language would be set forth in the Power of Attorney form requiring that they act together and they each have to acknowledge that they are to act together.

When granting power of attorney in New York to more than one person, the principal can choose to designate separate tasks, although that is usually not the case.  It could be stated that one person only will handle certain types of transactions and another person will handle other types of transactions. One person can also be designated power of attorney for one task but not be given legal authority for other activities.

If there are two separate documents and each party may be doing different things at the same time, not recognizing what the other one is doing, then that can present problems. If they disagree, then nothing happens. The two people designated as co-agents must agree on any transaction or they will be unable to act unless the power of attorney document authorizes the co-agents to act individually.