New York Health Care Proxy (Medical Power of Attorney)

The New York Health Care Proxy, otherwise known as a Medical Power of Attorney, plays a fundamental role in upholding the rights of individuals once they enter into a state of incapacity. A Health Care Proxy accomplishes this by allowing an individual (known as the Principal) to preemptively record their wishes regarding their end-of-life treatment and care in a legally-binding manner. If they one day become incapable of making or expressing their own health care decisions, the Health Care Agent (also referred to as the Agent) they have named in the form will be able to communicate—on their behalf—such wishes to their health care provider.

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State Laws & Signing Requirements

State Laws – Health Care Agents and Proxies

Signing Requirements (§ 2981(2)) – It is mandated by state law that in order for a Health Care Proxy to be valid the following must be upheld:

  • The Principal must sign and date the form (or they must direct another individual to sign it on their behalf),
  • Two (2) adult witnesses must witness the Principal’s signature, and
  • The two (2) witnesses must sign the form.

Further to this, there are a number of other requirements that must also be met in cases where the Principal resides in a mental hygiene facility. These additional requirements can be found on the main New York Power of Attorney resource page.