If you’re like most people, you’ve put off creating your Will for one reason or another. Maybe you don’t know how to get started or are worried if your exact wishes will be followed.

Writing your will is actually straightforward.

The big problem is the assets in your Will usually go through an excruciating probate process before your loved ones receive their inheritance.

Thankfully there is a way to speed through this delay and save your family a lot of headaches!

If you notarize a Will, the courts won’t have to search for your witnesses for weeks (or months) to validate your last wishes. This can save you tons of time in probate court.

This is accomplished using a self proving affidavit. Keep reading to learn more!

What is a Last Will and Testament?

When it comes to estate planning, there’s one document that’s always at the top of the list: A Will.

A Last Will and Testament is a legal document that allows you to specify how you would like your assets to be distributed after you die.

There are tons of great reasons to write a Will:

  • To name a guardian for your minor children
  • Distribute your assets how you see fit
  • To make the probate process easier and faster
  • To document your specific final wishes

Requirements for Making A Will in New York

NY Law outlines who is allowed to make a will.

There are a few rules for the document itself. N.Y. Estates, Powers & Trusts Law § 3-2.1.

  1. Generally, you must make your Will on hard copy (No audio, video, or digital Wills are allowed in NY)
  2. It should be clear that the document is your final wishes
  3. The testator signs at the end of the document (or signed by someone else in their presence)
  4. Wills should be signed in front of at least two (2) witnesses (or acknowledged to be yours). These witnesses will then sign their names and write their residential addresses.

Witnesses don’t need to sign at the same time but will have to be within a 30 day window.

In New York, a Nuncupative or holographic will is only acknowledged in specific instances for members of the armed forces during a time of conflict. N.Y. Estates, Powers & Trusts Law § 3-2.2.

The Importance of a Notarized Will

There are a few things you should keep in mind to ensure your Will is valid. Here’s what you need to know about how to notarize Wills in NY, or technically how to notarize self proving affidavits.

For the purpose of this article we’re referring specifically to a self-proving Will. Which simply means that you’ve signed it in front of a certified notary public, along with your witnesses.

This gives the document more legal weight and makes it more difficult for anyone to contest the Will.

Keep in mind, A notary cannot just notarize the words of your Will. That’s why the self proving affidavit is needed to add the proper language required before a notary public can add his/her stamp.

If you don’t notarize your Will, there’s a greater chance that it could be declared invalid by the court. That would mean your assets would be distributed according to state law instead of your wishes.

How to Notarize a Will in New York

The process for notarizing a Will is relatively simple. Here’s what you need to do:

1. Write your Will

2. Sign your Will in front of the notary with at least two witnesses (2)

3. The notary public will then sign and stamp the Will

So can you just write a will and get it notarized?

Generally yes, as long as you have two witnesses. However it is recommended to seek professional assistance when making a Last Will in case it gets contested.

What to Expect During the Notarization Process

I bet the next question on your mind is “what is the process for having a will notarized in NY?”

When you go to notarize your Will, the notary will first ask to see your ID. They’ll also want to watch you sign the document in front of them.

The notary will then ask your two (2) witnesses to sign the Will as well. Once everyone has signed, the notary will add their own signature and stamp to the document.

After the Will is notarized, it’s a good idea to make copies for yourself and your executor. You should also keep the original in a safe place, like a safety deposit box.

Notarizing your Will is an important step in estate planning. By taking this simple step, you can ensure that your final wishes will be carried out.

Convenient Mobile Notary Service for Wills

Notarizing your Will is an important step in estate planning. By taking this simple step, you can ensure that your final wishes will be carried out.

To make this even easier, consider using Walkers Mobile Notary Will Service.

Benefits of our mobile notary service:

1. We come to you: There’s no need to take time out of your busy day to go to a notary public. We’ll come to you, whether you’re at home or at work.

2. We’re available 24/7: We know that your time is valuable. That’s why we offer 24/7 service, so you can notarize your Will on weekends or nights.

3. We’re affordable: We believe that everyone should have access to quality notary services. That’s why we offer our Will mobile notary service at an affordable price.

If you’re ready to notarize your Will, contact us today. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you have and schedule a time that’s convenient for you.

FAQs

How much does it cost to notarize a Will in NY?

The fee varies depending on your location and appointment date/time.

What should I do after my will is notarized?

Make copies for your records and keep at least 2 in separate locations, just in case.

Do I need to have my will notarized in order to execute it?

No, but it is highly recommended.

Can a Will be notarized instead of witnessed?

No. In NY it is a requirement to have 2 witnesses.

How do I find a free notary public?

Though you can find a notary free of charge at your local bank or library, you are likely to be denied service for a Last Will.