A March 2023 Look at the “New” NY ABA 2021 Power of Attorney

Don’t wait until the last minute to finish this document. In an emergency, this document is powerful even if you have a solid will and/or family trust.

The power of attorney (“POA”) should be part of every adult’s financial and estate planning. Unless an individual’s assets are jointly owned or held by a trust, no one can handle his/her financial affairs in the event of incapacity without a power of attorney. It would take a lengthy and expensive court process to appoint a guardian. 

A POA is not just a tool to be used later in life. Every parent of a college-bound student should consider having that young adult execute a POA so they can handle financial matters, or even gain access to their child’s residential quarters, if needed.

Earlier this year, the New York State Legislature made significant changes to the New York power of attorney law, which went into effect on June 13, 2021. Because of these changes, it is important for New Yorkers and others with New York POAs to review them at this time and to consider updating them.

An overview of the changes

Title 15 of Article 5 of New York’s General Obligations Law establishes a “statutory short form power of attorney” by which an individual, the Principal, can designate an Agent to act on the Principal’s behalf in matters of personal and financial nature. Even though the POA form may consist of several pages, especially when permitted modifications are added, it is still called Statutory Short Form, so that the language conferring authority with respect to each power listed on the “short form” is construed to incorporate a full description and extent of the agent’s authorized transactions set forth in the statute. Similar statutes exist in many other states.

Powers of attorney are frequently refused by financial institutions and other third parties. Changes in the New York power of attorney law that went into effect in June simplify the form and reduce the likelihood of financial institutions refusing to honor validly executed POAs.
In 2009, a POA form that deviated from the statutory language would be deemed invalid. The statutory form also limited the agent’s ability to make gifts by allowing only a maximum aggregate annual gift of $500, unless the principal executed a separate Statutory Gift Rider (“SGR”). Additionally, the old law provided no sanctions or punitive remedies for third parties refusing to honor a valid POA. 

As a result of the new law, the following significant changes have been made:

  1. Compliance with statutory requirements. According to the new law, a POA form must “substantially conform” to the language provided in the General Obligations Law *5-1513, but is not required to be identical to the POA form in the General Obligations Law §5-1513. POA forms may be valid even if they contain slight errors in spelling, punctuation, formatting, or type slightly different from the statutory POA form language. The following two warnings, which are in the NY GOL *5-1513, cannot be omitted from the POA: the “Important Information for the Agent” clause and the “Caution to the Principal” clause.
  2. Legislative gift riders will be eliminated. In order for the agent to make gifts in excess of $500 per year, the principal previously had to execute a separate SGR, which required two witnesses to witness the principal’s signature and an acknowledgment from a notary. By amending the law, a principal can authorize the agent to make gifts up to $5,000 per year, and additionally, the principal can modify the standard POA form to authorize the agent to make gifts exceeding $5,000 per year, and to authorize the agent to make gifts to himself or herself or to make other gift transactions and changes to interests in the principal’s property without the need for a separate SGR.
  3.  Penalties for not accepting a valid POA. In the past, financial institutions have refused to accept a valid, properly executed POA or only recognized their own form. Previously, there weren’t any penalties for unreasonable refusal to honor POA. Under the new law, if a third party is found to have acted unreasonably in refusing a POA, the court can award damages, including reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs. A POA can be rejected under certain circumstances, and there’s a timeline for when it can be rejected. POA recipients have 10 days to accept or reject the POA, or to ask for an affidavit from the agent or an opinion of counsel from the principal, and must then accept or reject the POA in writing within seven days of receiving the affidavit or opinion of counsel. 
  4. Third parties acting in good faith are protected by the Safe Harbor. By law, recipients of a POA are protected if they act in good faith when accepting the POA, even if the POA is later deemed invalid. The recipient is shielded from liability if the following conditions are met: (a) the POA must have the principal’s acknowledged signature verified by a notary public or another authorized to accept acknowledgments; and (b) the recipient must not know that the principal’s signature is forged, the POA is invalid, or that the agent is abusing his/her/its authority.
  5. Requirement for execution. In New York, a statutory power of attorney, or a non-statutory power of attorney, executed by a principal must: (a) be typed or printed in clear type no smaller than 12 points; and (b) be signed, initialed, and dated by the principal or by another person other than the principal’s agent or successor agent, in the principal’s presence and under the principal’s direction. In either case, the signature of the person signing must be duly notarized and acknowledged, and must be witnessed by two persons who are not named in the instrument as agents or as permissible recipients of gifts, principal. The person who takes the acknowledgment may also serve as one of the witnesses. 

Though third parties may more readily accept the new POA form, powers of attorney and statutory gift riders properly executed previously under the law in effect at the time of execution will remain valid.

If you are in Northern Westchester, we can still have your Apostille processed same day if we have everything by 11am. No other Apostille expediters courier to the Westchester County Clerk and the New York State Department of State 5 days a week.

White Plains Apostille Translation Services

White Plains Apostille & Mobile Notary Translation Services

According to the guidelines of the International Hague Convention, vital record translations cannot be considered as “legal” documents. The translations that accompany your Apostille are classified as “reference translations,” intended to assist, rather than directly serve as the information source, outside the United States.

For instance, if you are applying for a student VISA, you are not allowed to utilize the translation document as a source of pedigree or identifying information. Instead, information for your new international document must be sourced from the original government-issued vital document. Moreover, if you intend to change your name, even in a minor way, you will need to apply for that change independently. Any variations to your name in the translation or notes in parentheses will be disregarded, following the Hague Convention guidelines.

We have established close partnerships with law firms capable of performing high-level legal translations for Italian, German, Portuguese, and Spanish. For legal documents like a Procura Specialie in Italy, we advise against opting for a $99 reference translation. However, for documents such as marriage licenses, birth certificates, or death certificates, reference translations are sufficient, as they are not used for sourcing information.

Our acceptance guarantee ensures that any rejections based on procedural guideline violations will be covered. Please note that our replacement guarantee does not apply to opinion-based objections from clients, such as “I think the gender of the word bicycle wasn’t proper.” In essence, the primary goal of the translation is to ensure the acceptance of your Apostille document, rather than being relied on as the primary source of information.

If you have any questions regarding the translation process, please feel free to ask before placing your Apostille order. Even if you think your question may be unrelated, we encourage you to seek clarification.

Step by Step 2023 Action Guide to Apostille your Power of Attorney in Westchester for less than $20

Step by Step Action Guide to Apostille your Power of Attorney in Westchester for less than $20
New York Apostille expediter Harry Otto explains the process of processing your own power of attorney with an Apostille beginning in Westchester County. Here he explains how it can be done, start to finish, for less than $20! It's not complicated if you have a bit of time and patience.

  1. Once you have your undated and unsigned power of attorney typed up, head over to the Westchester County clerk’s office in White Plains. They’re located at 111 Martin Luther King Blvd next to the Galleria. If you’re driving, there’s always a convenient spot to park on Quarropas Street right by Grand Street. Put 45 minutes in the meter or download the White Plains Parking mobile app.
    Your first stop for Apostille is to have your document notarized and authenticated at the Westchester County Clerk's office in Whie Plains.
  2. Head to the third-floor clerk’s office and simply ask for a notary. It’s free.
    Notary and authentication counter at Westchester County Clerk.
  3. Tell the notary that you’ll be sending this off for an Apostille and you also need “authentication”. They will staple a blue authentication tag to the notarized document. This is $3.00. If you have multiple pages being notarized in the same Apostille, you only need one tag – each notarization in the single Apostille does not require authentication.
    Westchester County Notary Authentication Tag
  4. The clerk’s office has the New York State Department of State Apostille request form. Ask them for one. Or you can fill that out now by downloading it here:


  1. After filling out this form and enclosing a check for $10 please remember to include a self-addressed and stamped envelope. They will absolutely delay your request if you don’t follow this direction. Expect your completed Apostille in the mail within 3 weeks. If you don’t receive it in 3 weeks, you can try calling them at (518)474-4429. There is no tracking on any part of this process, so this is only for applications that are not time sensitive.
    Apostille Counter at 123 William Street in NYC
  2. Another alternative to mailing, but no faster, is to hand deliver the power of attorney, application and $10 check directly to the Department of State at 123 William Street in New York City. They will forward your documents to Albany for processing, and you can save on postage. And yes, some people value their time less than $4 in postage.

Is there anything we can do to speed up the process for you? It takes less than two minutes for you to complete the intake form. Click here to start the apostille application process: apostilleapply.com or call, text even WhatsApp (914)441-2444.

If you are in Northern Westchester, we can still have your Apostille processed same day if we have everything by 11am. No other Apostille expediters courier to the Westchester County Clerk and the New York State Department of State 5 days a week.

White Plains Apostille & Mobile Notary Service: The Definitive 2023 Guide to Obtaining Your Apostilled FBI Background Check

In the United States, we want to make it clear that we are not channelers. Channelers are companies authorized by the government to collect fingerprints, send them to the FBI, and initiate your FBI background check.

Channeler Distinction: It’s important to note that a channeler is NOT an apostille expediter. A proficient expediter can apostille your FBI background check in less than a week, sometimes even on the same day.

Recommended Expediter: For the quickest results, we recommend using Printscan, conveniently located at 75 South Broadway in White Plains. Please note that Printscan no longer accepts phone or drop-in appointments. Schedule an appointment at Printscan – White Plains, NY. The cost for fingerprints and FBI background checks is $90 plus tax.

Mobile Services: Printscan offers the convenience of sending a fingerprint technician to your home or office. Contact them at (631) 782-1700 for this service.

PDF Option for Faster Processing: Opt for a PDF version of your FBI background check for the quickest turnaround time. Once ready, upload the PDF to our application page at apostilleapply.com for immediate printing and apostilling.

Comprehensive Services: At apostilleapply.com, we offer additional services such as translation, color scan-to-PDF, and FedEx delivery to your selected country. We handle all aspects of your apostille and final application.

FD-258 Fingerprint Cards: White Plains Apostille provides FD-258 fingerprint cards, available in a 3-pack on our application site at apostilleapply.com. These cards can be brought to your local police department.

Special Cases: For requests involving marriage licenses for second citizenship and golden VISAs, ensure you obtain the necessary documents. In White Plains, visit the Westchester County Clerk’s office on Martin Luther King Blvd. For New York City, the Department of Health handles this. Always contact the County Clerk where the original certificate was issued to determine who issues certified copies.

Ready to Begin? Initiate the apostille process at apostilleapply.com or contact Harry Otto at (914) 441-2444 via text.

Cheers, Amanda

*Are you an advertiser looking to work with White Plains Apostilles and Mobile Notary? Reach out to Allison M at becomeanadvertiser@corporateapostilles.com

How to get an Apostille Birth Certificate in New York in November 2021

Birth Certificate Apostilles are processed through our expediters at the NYS Department of State in New York City every day.

Generally speaking, one of the first steps to get the apostille is to order a certified copy of the birth certificate through the New York State Department of Vital Statistics. 

There are literally millions of U.S. citizens living abroad and many get married, work, or establish businesses outside the United States. If an U.S. citizen is about to marry abroad, obtain dual citizenship, or start a business in a member of the Hague Apostille network, then they will need to provide a birth certificate with an apostille. The birth certificate must be authenticated by the same state that has issued the certified copy.

Let New York Apostilles help handle the process for as little as $149. We can even assist you in authenticating a copy as many countries will accept copies when you can not obtain an exemplified or certified copy.

In Westchester County, the following Cities, Towns and Villages have the authority to issue birth certificates:

  1. Cities:
  • Mount Vernon
  • New Rochelle
  • Peekskill
  • Rye
  • White Plains
  • Yonkers
  1. Towns:
  • Bedford
  • Cortlandt
  • Eastchester
  • Greenburgh
  • Harrison
  • Lewisboro
  • Mamaroneck
  • Mount Pleasant
  • New Castle
  • North Castle
  • North Salem
  • Ossining
  • Pelham
  • Pound Ridge
  • Rye
  • Somers
  • Yorktown
  1. Villages:
  • Ardsley
  • Briarcliff Manor
  • Bronxville
  • Buchanan
  • Croton-on-Hudson
  • Dobbs Ferry
  • Elmsford
  • Hastings-on-Hudson
  • Irvington
  • Larchmont
  • Mamaroneck (town)
  • Mount Kisco
  • Ossining (town)
  • Pelham Manor
  • Pleasantville
  • Port Chester
  • Rye Brook
  • Scarsdale
  • Sleepy Hollow
  • Tarrytown
  • Tuckahoe
  • Irvington
  • Armonk
  • Chappaqua
  • Katonah
  • You can even upload your copy securely here: apostilleapply.com

Questions about the process? Call, text or WhatsApp Apostille Expediter Harry Otto at (914)441-2444 7 days a week.

NY Birth Certificate Apostille

If you are looking to apostille your birth certificate and were born in New York City, each country will require a different level of authentication. The strictest variation we commonly see is countries like Italy for dual passport applications, where they require an updated original long form birth certificate with exemplification.

What is a long form birth certificate?

The long form birth certificate contains all the information regarding the newborn, like parents’ names (including mother’s maiden), the attending doctor, and exact time of birth. In contrast, a short form birth certificate merely contains vital information and says, “the long form birth certificate is on file”.

What is an exemplification?

The exemplification is just another document, from the Clerk or Department of Vital Statistics, that says “we recognize this birth certificate as being authentic”.

Wait, can’t you just have it exemplified as part of the Apostille process?

Yes, but having us exemplify more than doubles the price of the Apostille because of the time required at Centre Street in New York City. The fastest and easiest way to obtain the long form exemplified birth certificate is to order it here (and have it shipped directly to us):


We do offer options where you can forward a specific power-of-attorney to us granting permission to obtain your birth certificate in NYC if time is absolutely of the essence.

Some of our same day Apostille options allow for obtaining your documents, having the Apostilled and couriered to FedEx all before 6pm.

To start the Apostille process, take 4 minutes to provide us with a bit of information here:


* As a sidenote, Birth Certificates issued in Westchester County are always exemplified as part of the Apostille process. We are at the Westchester County Clerk every day of the week!

If you are in Northern Westchester, we can still have your Apostille processed same day if we have everything by 11am. No other Apostille expediters courier to the Westchester County Clerk and the New York State Department of State 5 days a week.

FBI Background Check with Apostille

FBI Background Check with Apostille – November 2022 Update

In 2020, we used to make daily trips to Washington, D.C., on behalf of our VIP clients to process “same day” apostilles on FBI background checks. As a result of the Covid initiative, the walk-in counter in Washington, D.C. was eliminated and all federal apostille processing was done by mail through the Virginia processing center.

Here we are in November of 2022 and the D.C. service counter is still closed. As a result, the time it takes to process a mail-in application has jumped from four weeks to six weeks to eight weeks to what is now turning out to be ten weeks.

The fact that some expediting companies still quote 4 weeks as a timeframe for issuing an apostille on their websites is equally frustrating. As a result, many candidates have to abandon their applications, and some sometimes fly to foreign countries empty handed as a result of this. 

You have a few options, and depending on the country and the purpose of the FBI Background Check, we may be able to assist you. 

Call, text or WhatsApp apostille expediter Harry Otto at either (914)441-2444 or our D.C. hotline at (202)705-4713. Or, if you’re ready to upload your FBI Background Check PDF, use our apostille intake form:


2021 NY Power of Attorney

2021 New York State 2021 Power of Attorney with Westchester County venue. This Power of Attorney is not intended for Interntional apostille use and should not be used if you are unfamiliar with agent/principal relationships.


Note that we have had signers call us after having their POA rejected by their bank. This is common and banks have the absolute right under § 644 of New York’s General Obligations Law to wait 10 days to even provide and answer.

So please, this is important, make sure you’ve reviewed you Power of Attorney a few times before submitting to a financial institution. If it’s “mission critical” that the Power of Attorney be instantly accepted and in “full force”, you’ll need to have a New York State attorney certify it. If the bank sees an attorney attached to the document, they will not “play games” as the civil penalties could be huge.

One common rejection we hear is banks asking for the “gift rider affidavit” or attachment. This rejection was common with the old 2010 Power of Attorney, but the new 2021 version eliminates this and includes the $5000 gift rider provision on page 3 section (g).

Remember we cannot assist you in preparing this document, but we can warn you of the issues that have come up with past clients.

download it here

Emergency Same Day NYC Marriage License Procurement for Apostille 

Same Day NYC Marriage License Procurement for Apostille (additional):

Marriage documents must be exemplified prior to County Clerk authentication. See if your marriage documents qualify by watching this video:

We offer a completely turn-key solution for obtaining your fully Apostilled marriage records in New York City. This service is ideal for applicants that don’t have their original marriage records and live across the country or abroad. The only step you’ll need to take is to send us a completed and notarized power of attorney. Once we have this, we can:

  1. Apply, pay the filing fees and obtain your marriage record at 140 Worth Street, and;
  2. Have your marriage record authenticated with the New York County Clerk at 10 Centre Street, and;
  3. Process your apostille with the Department of State, and;
  4. Ensure your Apostilled marriage record is at a FedEx location before 6pm.

This is the same service we provide to law firms that receive flat fees of anywhere between $4500 and $7500 (per applicant) for immigration and Visa packages. The fees do not include any other documents being processed or Apostilled ($cost for same day / $cost for 3days):

New York County (Manhattan) $1499/$499 [10 Centre Street, New York, NY 10007] 1:17 33ml (no authentications on Wednesdays)
Kings County (Brooklyn) $1699/$549 [360 Adams St, Brooklyn, NY 11201] 1:12 34ml
Bronx County (The Bronx) $1599/$549 [851 Grand Concourse, The Bronx, NY 10451] :51 26ml
Richmond County (Staten Island) $1899/$599 [130 Stuyvesant Pl, Staten Island, NY 10301] 1:26 62ml
Queens County (Queens) $1699/$549 [8811 Sutphin Blvd #106, Queens, NY 11435] :50 27ml

*Richmond County may not always be available the same day

The same service is available in Westchester County:

White Plains $249
Yonkers $349
New Rochelle $349
Mount Vernon $349
Peekskill $449
Rye City $299

These fees do not include the document fees from the clerk as many applicants choose to pull multiple copies of the exemplified documents “just in case”. The exemplified marriage documents are usually about $35 each.