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Will Signing Process (CA), Self-Proving Affidavit, etc...Help!

Discussion in 'Estate Administration & Probate Court' started by PR660, Jul 6, 2023.

  1. PR660

    PR660 Law Topic Starter Member

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    Could someone please explain this process or verify that my understanding is correct:

    1) Will maker signs the will.

    2) Two witnesses listed in the will sign the actual "witness" signature portion of the will, whenever and wherever...

    3) Notary comes over to the house where the two witnesses are present and they sign the Self- Proving Affidavit in front of the notary.

    4) Self-Proving Affidavit is stored with the actual will...

    Done deal?

    Thanks very much in advance!
  2. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    Probate Code section 6110:

    (a) Except as provided in this part, a will shall be in writing and satisfy the requirements of this section.

    (b) The will shall be signed by one of the following:
    (1) By the testator.

    (2) In the testator’s name by some other person in the testator’s presence and by the testator’s direction.

    (3) By a conservator pursuant to a court order to make a will under Section 2580.

    (c) (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), the will shall be witnessed by being signed, during the testator’s lifetime, by at least two persons each of whom (A) being present at the same time, witnessed either the signing of the will or the testator’s acknowledgment of the signature or of the will and (B) understand that the instrument they sign is the testator’s will.

    (2) If a will was not executed in compliance with paragraph (1), the will shall be treated as if it was executed in compliance with that paragraph if the proponent of the will establishes by clear and convincing evidence that, at the time the testator signed the will, the testator intended the will to constitute the testator’s will.

    Nothing in Chapter 2 of Part 1 of Division 6 of the Probate Code (Execution of Wills) that requires anything to be notarized.
    army judge likes this.
  3. Tax Counsel

    Tax Counsel Well-Known Member

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    You should verify that with a CA attorney. Where I've practiced that wouldn't work. But perhaps CA is more casual about it than the states in which I have lived. The purpose of the self-proving affidavit is to show that the witnesses saw the testator sign it or can at least verify the testators's signature. The way you've described the "witnesses" aren't ever in the same room as the testator and my not have even heard from the testator that the document they are looking is truly that person's will. My state is stricter on the requirements than that.

    Indeed, if you wrote the will yourself, it's probably a good idea to have the entire will reviewed for problems/errors. Each state has laws that vary at least to some degree in the law of wills, intestate succession, and probate. You need to ensure the will conforms to what your state requires. After you're dead, you can't fix it if you screwed it up. Paying a lawyer a few hundred dollars may prevent those kinds of mistakes from upsetting the plans you have.
    retic likes this.

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