Living Will

This has been prepared for notaries about the laws governing their duties and is not intended as legal advice. For additional information or for difficult situations, it may be advisable for you to seek the advice of a licensed attorney.

The living will requires the presence of two adult witnesses, who must also sign the document.  If you are physically unable to sign, you may have another person sign for you in your presence and in the presence of the two witnesses. The persons you appoint on the living will cannot act as witnesses to this document.  At least one of your witnesses must NOT be your spouse or a blood relative.


May a notary notarize a signature on a living will if there if no prepared notarial certificate on the document?


Yes, the notary public may add the appropriate notarial certificate determined by the principal (the person making the living will).

A living will must be signed by the principal in the presence of two subscribing witnesses, one of whom is neither the spouse, nor a blood relative of the principal.  The document requires two witnesses but does not require notarization.  However, if the customer wishes on acknowledging his or her signature,  we may do so.

Remember,  a notary public is not an attorney, they will not advise the customer about the contents of the document, nor the correct procedure for executing the document.  If you have any questions,  we suggest that you consult an attorney for assistance.

A notary can play an essential role in making sure that the document is credible, if any dispute arises regarding the validity of the signers signature.

Notary publics serve an important role, which is to verify the identity of someone who signs an agreement and attesting to that person’s signature.  If a person contests the living will, and argues that the document was invalid, coerced or for any other reason, notarization can prove that the person signing the document was competent, able, and voluntarily signed this powerful document.