CA Assembly Bill 2805


State: California
Signed: September 28, 2006

Effective: September 28, 2006
Chapter: 579


Legalizes an electronic advance health care directive if it is acknowledged before a Notary and makes provisions for signing a directive with a digital signature.


Amends Section 4673 of the California Probate Code.

  1. Legalizes electronic advance care directives or durable powers of attorney for health care if the instrument is acknowledged before a Notary. (Note: Paper directives and powers of attorney are legal if signed in the presence of two witnesses or acknowledged before a Notary.)
  2. If a digital signature is used in executing the electronic directive or power of attorney, the digital signature must: (a) Meet the requirements of Government Code Section 16.5 and Chapter 10 of Division 7 of Title 2 of the California Code of Regulations or use an algorithm approved by the National Institute of Standards and Technology; (b) be unique to the person using it; (c) be capable of verification; (d) be under the sole control of the person using it; (e) be linked to the data in such a manner that if the data are changed, the signature is invalidated; (f) persist with the electronic document and not by association in separate files; and (g) be bound to a digital certificate.

Electronic notarization of advance health care directives is now legal in California! Any type of electronic signature is permitted, although if a digital signature is used, the digital signature must conform to the standards contained in the new law. (Note: the bill is not exactly clear in stating whether the principal signer, Notary, or both parties are using a digital signature.)

Read Assembly Bill 2805.