'' ME Legislative Docket 123 | NNA
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ME Legislative Docket 123

Notary Law Update: ME Legislative Docket 123

State: Maine

Summary:

In a massive probate bill, Maine enacts provisions related to self-proved wills, powers of attorney, parental affidavits and transfer on death deeds that affect Notaries.

Signed:  April 20, 2018

Effective:  July 01, 2019

Chapter: 402

Affects:

Adds and amends many sections to the Maine Probate Code including the following that are relevant to Notaries in Title 18-C of the Maine Revised Statutes Annotated: Section 2-501-517, 3-406, 5-901-963, 6-401-421 and 9-201-205.

Changes:
  1. Provides that a last will may be executed, attested and made self-proved through acknowledgment by the testator and affidavits of the witnesses made before an officer authorized to administer oaths under the laws of the state where execution occurs, and provides a notarial certificate for a self-proved will.
  2. Enacts the Uniform Power of Attorney Act with the following provisions: (a) Requires a power of attorney to be signed by the principal or in the principal’s conscious presence by another individual directed by the principal to sign the principal’s name; (b) stipulates that a power of attorney is not valid unless it is acknowledged before a Notary Public or other individual authorized by law to take acknowledgments; (c) provides that a power of attorney is presumed to be genuine if the principal acknowledges the signature before a Notary or other officer authorized by law to take acknowledgments; (d) permits a power of attorney to be electronically signed (and, impliedly, electronically notarized); and (e) exempts from the scope of the law a power of attorney for health care decisions, a proxy or other delegation to exercise voting rights or management of rights with respect to an entity and a power created on a form prescribed by a government or governmental subdivision, agency, or instrumentality for a governmental purpose.
  3. Enacts the Uniform Real Property Transfer on Death Act with the following provisions: (a) Permits the transfer of real property via a transfer on death deed; (b) requires a transfer on death deed to conform to the formalities (e.g. acknowledgment, notarization) of an inter vivos deed; (c) stipulates that the capacity required to make or revoke a transfer on death deed is the same as the capacity required to make a will; and (d) provides a form for a revocable transfer on death deed.
  4. Requires an affidavit of parentage by parents consenting to an adoption to be acknowledged before a Notary and clarifies that the Notary may not be an attorney who represents wither the parent or any person who is likely to become the legal guardian, custodian or parent of the child.
Analysis:

The state of Maine has enacted a large probate bill that requires notarization of forms used for various matters. In one bill, LD 123 deals with self-proving wills, powers of attorney, parental consent affidavits for adoption and transfer on death deeds. Typically, a state will enact separate bills for each of the subjects. This new law update focuses only on the parts of this massive bill touching on the notarization of self-proving affidavits to last wills, powers of attorney, parental consent affidavits for adoptions and transfer on death deeds in which an individual may bequeath property to another individual by a property deed and not an estate instrument (last will, trust, etc.)

Read the bill text.

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