Thursday, April 9, 2020
Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed various executive orders to address the issues faced by the state of New York and its residents during these unprecedented times as the country deals with the COVID-19 pandemic. On April 7, 2020, the Governor issued Executive Order 202.14 which modifies the laws concerning numerous documents pertaining to a person's estate plan.
The act of witnessing for the execution of certain instruments that is required under state laws is authorized to be performed utilizing audio-video technology. Those instruments include:
- Last will and testament
- Lifetime trust
- Statutory gifts rider to a statutory short form power of attorney
- Real property instruments
- Health care proxies
- Instrument to direct the disposition of a person’s remains upon their death
See Cheryl L. Erato, The Remote Witnessing of Estate Planning Documents During the COVID-19 Pandemic, nyestatelitigationblog.com, March 8, 2020.
Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.)) and Ira Bloom (Justice David Josiah Brewer Distinguished Professor of Law, Albany Law School) for bringing this article to my attention.