Agent Alert

April 13, 2020
"Essential Services" Revised to Include Legal and Real Estate Services (NY)

New York Empire State Development recently revised its guidance to include legal and real estate services as essential businesses under recent Executive Orders limiting business activity in New York State. The updated guidance , which was released on April 9, reads as follows:

 “For purposes of Executive Order 202.6, “Essential Business” shall mean businesses operating in or as:

7. Financial Institutions including: [included in previous guidance]
  • banks or lending institution
  • insurance
  • payroll
  • accounting
  • services related to financial markets, except debt collection

14. Professional services with extensive restrictions: [added April 9, 2020]
  • Lawyers may continue to perform all work necessary for any service so long as it is performed remotely. Any in-person work presence shall be limited to work only in support of essential businesses or services; however, even work in support of an essential business or service should be conducted as remotely as possible.
  • Real estate services shall be conducted remotely for all transactions, including but not limited to title searches, appraisals, permitting, inspections, and the recordation, legal, financial and other services necessary to complete a transfer of real property; provided, however, that any services and parts therein may be conducted in-person only to the extent legally necessary and in accordance with appropriate social distancing and cleaning/disinfecting protocols; and nothing within this provision should be construed to allow brokerage and branch offices to remain open to the general public (i.e. not clients)."

For information on how to remotely notarize documents in New York, click here .
Please continue to check out our   dedicated webpage   for COVID-19 information and guidance, on a regular basis. We will be updating the material as we learn of new developments.