How Does Remote Notary Services Assist Estate Planning?
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How Does Remote Notary Services Assist Estate Planning?

How does a remote notary validate my Will? What's the role of a notary public? In this article, we'll discuss the importance of a remote notary and how this can validate your important documents! Keep reading to learn more!

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Estate planning involves the creation of legally binding documents, such as Wills and Powers of Attorney, that dictate how a person's affairs should be managed during their lifetime and after their passing. Remote notary services can significantly benefit estate planning. Let's explore how remote notary services can help you create legal documents that comply with your state's legal requirements.

What is the Role of a Notary Public?

A notary public is someone appointed by the state government to act as a neutral witness to the signing of a legal document. Notaries public are called upon to perform notarial acts, like applying a seal to the document. Notaries are asked to verify a person's identity and validate that the signers know the consequences of the transaction. Notaries public are often used in real estate transactions, but they are also essential for validating Wills and other estate planning documents.

Advantages of Remote Notary Services

Remote notary services offer significant advantages for estate planning, especially compared to traditional, in-person notarization.

1. Convenience for Testators:

  • Individuals creating or amending their Wills can do so from the comfort of their homes. This convenience encourages more people to engage in estate planning, ensuring their final wishes are legally documented. FastWill partners with OnlineNotaryCenter to help you notarize your Will and Power of Attorney documents by simply clicking a Zoom link. Once you connect with a notary, you can complete the process by meeting remotely with your witnesses.

2. Complying With State Legal Requirements:

  • Every state has its own legal requirements for executing Wills, including the presence of witnesses and a notary. Remote notary services like OnlineNotaryServices are aware of state laws and can ensure that your legal documents comply with state guidelines. 

3. Timely Updates to Estate Documents:

  • Estate plans may need to be updated due to changes in family circumstances, financial situations, or personal preferences. Remote notary services make it easier for individuals to update their Wills and other estate documents timely.

4. Accessibility for Vulnerable Populations:

  • Vulnerable populations, such as the elderly or those with underlying health conditions, can benefit from remote notary services to complete or update their estate planning documents without risking exposure to health concerns.

5. Reducing Family Disputes:

  • Properly notarized estate planning documents are less likely to be challenged in court. Remote notary services help ensure that documents are executed correctly, reducing potential disputes among heirs.

How Can a Notary Prove the Validity of a Will?

When a Will is notarized, it obtains the status of being "self-proving." A Will is "self-proving" when it incorporates an affidavit or a sworn statement signed by the witnesses. This affidavit serves as compelling evidence that the will was executed correctly and that the individual creating the Will possessed the necessary testamentary capacity during the signing process.

How Can a Notary Help Complete a Power of Attorney Form?

Some states require Power of Attorney forms to be notarized. There are four basic types of POAs: the General Power of Attorney, Special or Limited Power of Attorney, Durable Power of Attorney, and a Medical or Healthcare Power of Attorney.

If you need one of these forms notarized as part of your estate plans, you need to appear in front of a licensed notary public. You can now meet with the notary public remotely in many states to complete these documents. 

Use Remote Notary Services to Validate Your Estate Plans

Remote notary services represent a significant advancement in the notarization process, offering convenience and accessibility to people who need to notarize important documents, especially estate planning documents like Wills and Powers of Attorney. These services are particularly valuable when geographic distance, limited mobility, time constraints, health concerns, emergencies, or natural disasters come into play. By embracing remote notary services, individuals can efficiently and securely execute their estate planning documents, ensuring that their wishes are legally documented and reducing the potential for future disputes. As technology continues to advance, remote notary services are likely to become an integral part of the estate planning process for most families.

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