Important: Read our coronavirus (COVID-19) statement here.


Every adult should execute a power of attorney to a spouse, trusted family member, or a friend. If you become incompetent and do not have a power of attorney, no one will be able to manage your financial or legal affairs.

New York revised its power of attorney statute twice in the last decade. The current statutory power of attorney is a complex document, and a well drafted power of attorney will go well beyond the basic form by adding enhancements and necessary powers not contained in the basic statutory form.

Selecting the right agent to act on your behalf is critical. Our firm can guide you in the process and counsel you and your agent on their obligations and responsibilities.


What are the four types of power of attorney?
The New York State statutory form is only one kind - a durable power of attorney. Any deviation from the statutory form will not enjoy the presumption of validity. However, just because it is a form does not mean that it is a simple document. There are many “blank” areas that need to be enhanced by an attorney, and certain sections must be properly completed in order to grant sufficient authority.

What is the purpose of a power of attorney?
A Power of Attorney appoints someone as your agent (attorney-in-fact) to make financial transactions on your behalf if you instruct them to do so. If you are no longer able to give instructions, your agent must act in your best interests.

What is the difference between a power of attorney and a personal representative?
Your agent under a Power of Attorney can only act while you are alive. A personal representative acts for you after death. Your personal representative in New York is called an Executor (if you have a Will) or Administrator (without a Will).

Where can I get power of attorney papers?
The basic form is available for download. However, failure to include sufficient enhancements under the “modifications” sections and failure to properly execute certain sections will create substantial problems that will require expensive legal work (such as a guardianship) to fix. The best practice is to hire an attorney to properly draft and help you execute this important, complex legal document.

How do I get rid of the power of attorney?
New York has a specific revocation process which requires notice and filing.

What does POA mean on a bank account?
Typically this means you have given someone authority to access that account on your behalf.

What are the pros and cons of power of attorney?
The benefit is that someone can act for you when you ask them to, or when you are no longer able to. The drawback is that this person has access to your finances. You need to appoint someone you trust in consultation with your lawyer who focuses his or her practice on trusts & estates.

What are the limitations of power of attorney?
Your lawyer can customize this document and provide limits that make you comfortable.

Can I get a power of attorney at a bank?
It is generally ill advised to obtain legal documents from non-lawyers.

How does someone get power of attorney?
The best practice is to execute the document with the help and supervision of a lawyer who focuses his or her practice on trusts & estates.

Can power of attorney be changed without consent?
No. This is fraud.

What does power of attorney allow me to do?
The agent is granted any power that the principal wishes to give them, and can include anything the principal could do themselves.

Who can override a power of attorney?
As part of a court-appointed guardian process, the old power of attorney is usually rendered invalid.

Does a power of attorney have to be filed with the court?

How to become a power of attorney?
Somebody needs to make the decision that they trust you and decide to appoint you as their agent. This should be done under the supervision of a lawyer who focuses his or her practice on trusts & estates.

Can a power of attorney transfer money to themselves?
Only if they are instructed to do so by the principal, and only if the statutory gifts rider is properly completed. This needs to be done with the advice and supervision of a lawyer who focuses his or her practice on trusts & estates.

Does a power of attorney need to be notarized?
This depends on which powers are granted.

How to take power of attorney when one is mentally incapable?
If someone is not able to execute a power of attorney, if the power of attorney was not properly completed with the right modifications and enhancements, you will have to ask the Court to appoint a Guardian.This is a time consuming and expensive process.

Does power of attorney end at death?
Thank you for the continued kindness... for your sense of humor and for the great consideration you have shown... Your expression of fondness for the attorneys in my family touched my heart. May your kindness come back to you in all important ways.

- Rosanne


Richard A. Kroll, Esq. has an active practice in the area of Estate Planning, Trusts, and Probate. He is a member of the...

View More


Private practice in Rochester, New York with the Kroll Law Firm since 2007, a group practice in Brighton, New York with emphasis on...

View More


Marcus's practice involves estate planning for all families, including LGBT couples, second marriages, and families who have members with...

View More
We Welcome The Opportunity To Extend Our Expertise To You And Your Family
Richard A. Kroll
Rated by Super Lawyers

loading ...

Marcus William KrollReviewsout of 11 reviews Best Probate Attorneys in Rochester
Copyright © Kroll Law Firm, LLP 2021 - All rights reserved
Web Design by Scriptable Solutions