If I have prepared a Will that is sill unsigned, since it’s inconvenient to get everyone together at once can I have it witnessed and notarized separately?

Asked on November 22, 2015 under Estate Planning, North Carolina


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

In some states, the witnesses to a Will don’t have to be in the same room when they sign the Will. In other states, they don’t even have to watch the maker of the Will sign it, so long as the maker later tells the witnesses that they signed the document. Or the witnesses may be allowed to watch the maker sign and then sign it later themselves.
That having been said, it is always better to have everyone (witnesses and maker) sign together (and most jurisdictions require this). To find out the specific law in your state, you can contact the local probate court and/or consult directly with a local probate attorney.

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