ALBANY – The New York State Bar Association is lobbying to change New York’s power-of-attorney statute, which its members say is fraught with procedural pitfalls that pose “significant and severe repercussions” for both lawyers and clients.
The bar’s Working Group on Power of Attorney said 2008 and 2010 revisions to the power-of-attorney statute failed to meet the intended goal of strengthening protections for potentially incapacitated principals.
Instead, the group says power-of-attorney paperwork is now riddled with “traps for the unwary.”
The state bar’s House of Delegates adopted the group’s findings and authorized a lobbying effort in Albany to have power-of-attorney procedures revert back to simpler pre-2008 procedures by amending General Obligations Law, §5-1501-§5-1514.
Ellen Makofsky, the chair of the panel, said the “continuous” errors being made in preparation of power-of-attorney documents is due to the unnecessary complexity of New York’s law.