Does a Will have to be notarized?

I am frequently asked if a Will must be notarized?

In New York state, a Last Will and Testament does not technically have to be notarized to be valid. It does need to be witnessed to be valid.

However, a properly notarized and executed Will can make your wishes “self-proving” and adequate for some courts to accept your Will, all by itself, when you pass away. Otherwise, it is necessary to track down the original witnesses to “prove” that your Will is valid which can be difficult and time consuming for your heirs. It can also make your Will more vulnerable to being contested.

I have never prepared or executed a Will with a client without having the signatures of the client and the witnesses notarized. That is a routine part of the estate planning process for myself and my clients. All the Wills I prepare are “self-proving”. I am a Notary Public and there are other notaries available at my office as well.

Colman & Underwood is an experienced estate planning law office that works with clients in the following areas: Onondaga County, Madison County; including the towns, cities and villages of: Fayetteville, Manlius, DeWitt, Cazenovia, Nelson, Morrisville, Cicero, Liverpool, East Syracuse, Syracuse, Baldwinsville, Camillus, Clay, Fabius, Elbridge, Geddes, Jordan, Lafayette, Lysander, Marcellus, Minoa, North Syracuse, Otisco, Pompey, Salina, Skaneateles, Spafford, Tully, Van Buren, Eaton, Canastota, Brewerton, Solvay, Central Square, Cato, Chittenango, Oneida, Utica and many other areas.