RI House Bill 7158


State: Rhode Island
Signed: July 14, 2006

Effective: July 14, 2006
Chapter: 604


Adds notarization as a witnessing procedure to the statutory durable power of attorney for health care.

The bill became law without the Governor's signature.


Amends Section 23-4.10-2 of the Rhode Island General Laws.

  1. Amends the statutory durable power of attorney for health care form to allow it to be signed or acknowledged in the presence of a Notary Public or two qualified witnesses, and deletes two instructions in the form that previously advised: “You are not required to have this power of attorney notarized.”
  2. Requires the Notary who provides any notarization on the statutory durable power of attorney for health care form to sign the following statement below the notarization: “I further declare under penalty of perjury that I am not related to the principal by blood, marriage, or adoption, and, to the best of my knowledge, I am not entitled to any part of the estate of the principal upon the death of the principal under a will now existing or by operation of law.”

In recent years, it is has been more common for a state to remove notarization as a witnessing procedure in execution of a health care power of attorney. Therefore, the NNA is pleased that the state of Rhode Island has included notarization as a valid means of attesting the signature on this form. While the “acknowledgment certificate” appearing in the form is odd compared to certificates seen in other states, because Rhode Island statute does not prescribe a standard acknowledgment, it may be used. The declaration a Notary must additionally sign upon notarizing the power of attorney is consistent with Model Notary Act and The Notary Public Code of Professional Responsibility provisions related to notarizing with a disqualifying interest in the transaction.

Read House Bill 7158.