On Tuesday, November 14, 2023, Governor Kathy Hochul signed legislation to protect New Yorkers from deed theft, a practice in which property owners are defrauded out of the property titles to their homes.
The new legislation, S.6577/A.6656, strengthens existing protections against deed theft by giving the Attorney General and local District Attorneys the power to pause eviction and ownership disputes while investigating or litigating deed theft cases. The law also increases the range of crimes that prosecutors can use to invalidate fraudulent sale and loan documents, among other measures. Governor Hochul signed the bill in Brooklyn, where the Attorney General, legal services advocates, members of the Legislature, and victims of deed theft were present. To read the official press release and watch the bill signing, click here.
On November 1, 2023, Governor Hochul signed “Notary Bill” eliminating the burdensome and often discriminatory process of requiring documents to be notarized in civil matters!
The new legislation, S.5162/A.5772, allows parties in civil disputes to make sworn statements without the need for notarization. With the enactment of this law, New York joins the federal government and more than 20 other states in eliminating the burdensome and often discriminatory process of notarizing documents in civil matters.
Access Justice Brooklyn is proud to have advocated for the passage of both S.6577/A.6656 and S.5162/A.5772. Thank you to Governor Hochul for making the legal system more accessible to New Yorkers!
New Yorkers are encouraged to report deed theft and other scams to the Attorney General’s office by calling 800-771-7755 or filing a complaint here.
Access Justice Brooklyn provides foreclosure intervention and prevention services to support Brooklyn homeowners. To learn more about our Homeowners Assistance program and access resources, click here.