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Hotline Tip: Notarizing Living Trusts

New Hotline Resized 3When asked to notarize a will, I suggest that the person consult an attorney prior to notarization. Does the same recommendation apply to a living trust?

– K.B., Roanoke, VA

If someone asks you to notarize a will, you may suggest they get legal advice first or proceed to notarize it. You will need to ensure the will has a notarial certificate, and if it does not, the signer will need to tell you whether to take their acknowledgment or administer an oath (jurat).The same thing applies to living trusts. You can notarize those documents as long as you are specifically directed by the signer as to what kind of notarization (acknowledgment or jurat) the living trust requires.

Hotline answers are based on the laws in the state where the question originated and may not reflect the laws of other states. If in doubt, always refer to your own state statutes. –The Editors

Kelle Clarke is a Contributing Editor with the National Notary Association.

 

Confronted with a tricky notarization? Unsure how to proceed? NNA members have unlimited access to our expertly trained NNA Hotline counselors to help you with all of your notarial questions. Call (888) 876-0827Monday through Friday, 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST; Saturday, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST

10 Comments

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Jas

10 Apr 2017

Can CALIFORNIA notaries notarize a trust? For example, client comes in executing trust by signing the trust itself and then get signature notarized...is this allowed in CALIFORNIA and if so, are there any limitations to notarizing trust? Thank you!

National Notary Association

11 Apr 2017

Hello. Yes. A California Notary may notarize a trust. It is just like any other notarization: scan the documents for blanks and make sure the certificate wording complies with state law. However, if the trust includes real property you must obtain a thumbprint in your journal.

Kim Bostrom

07 Jun 2017

Can Arizona notaries notarize a living trust?

National Notary Association

08 Jun 2017

Hello Kim. Yes, provided that the notarial act requested is permitted by state law and meets all requirements of state law.

libertylight@gmx.com

29 Oct 2017

Can a person who had a stoke able to make changes to their living trust? Am I able to notarize such a change in California?

National Notary Association

30 Oct 2017

Hello. We're sorry, but any questions regarding a person with a medical condition changing a legal document would need to be answered by a qualified attorney.

Randee Brien

27 Feb 2019

In CA, can a Pour Over Will and/or Living Trust be notarized if the client told me they’d rather I notarize than them get 2 witnesses?

National Notary Association

01 Mar 2019

Hello. A will should never be notarized if the testator is asking the Notary questions about how to proceed. Please see here for more information regarding notarizing wills: https://www.nationalnotary.org/knowledge-center/tips-tutorials/notarize-wills

Dan

30 Apr 2019

CA notary here. I've been asked to notarize approx. 10 documents relating to trust updates. I've been told It will require a husband, his wife and two witnesses to sign. Do I charge a fee for the witnesses signatures and do I include them in my journal along with the wife and husband?

National Notary Association

30 Apr 2019

Hello. If you are notarizing the witness' signatures, then you may charge a fee, otherwise you would not charge them.

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