Does a Living Will Need To Be Notarized in the U.S.?

Advance Health Care Directive Does a Living Will Need To Be Notarized in the U.S.?

Does a Living Will Need To Be Notarized in All U.S. States?

Creating a rock-solid living will is a must if you want your doctors and loved ones to follow your health care wishes in case you become too sick to express them. The question is—how does this document become legally binding?

Does a living will need to be notarized, and what is the best way to get it done? Read this article and learn how using DoNotPay can help you compose a living will or any other advance directive and get it notarized online with no trouble!

What Is a Living Will?

A living will is a document providing valuable health-associated instructions to your family and medical practitioner if you are incapacitated by an illness or injury. It lists all your medical care preferences and allows you to choose whether you want to:


  • Receive:
    • Specific therapies or medications
    • Hospice or palliative care
    • Comfort care and pain relief
  • Allow doctors to resuscitate you if you stop breathing or your heart stops
  • Be on life support or mechanical respiration
  • Get foods and fluids via a tube
  • Undergo surgeries, blood transfusions, or diagnostic tests
  • Donate your tissue and organs after death

This document is often combined with a medical power of attorney, also called a health care proxy in some states. A health care proxy helps you designate another person as your attorney-in-fact and authorize them to make medical care choices on your behalf if you are unable to.

Do You Need To Have a Living Will Notarized?

Whether or not you have to get your living will notarized depends on the state you live in. Most U.S. states require one or two witnesses to sign the document, and notarization is typically optional. In many of them, you can choose if you want to have the document notarized or signed by witnesses.

Find more details in the table below:

Two Witnesses Required One Witness or a Notary Required Two Witnesses or a Notary Required No Witnesses or Notary Required

Who Can Witness a Living Will?

There are not many requirements a witness to a living will must meet. It’s crucial to choose a person who is:

  1. Of legal age (above the age of 18)
  2. Capable of confirming that you are mentally stable at the moment of signing
  3. Able to testify that you are signing the document of your own free will

Who Can’t Witness a Living Will?

In most states, no one related to you by blood or marriage can be your witness. The same goes for:

  • Adoptive parents and adopted children
  • Inheritors
  • Health care providers
  • Hospital employees
  • Health care agents
  • Primary medical practitioners

Use DoNotPay To Generate an Advance Directive With Zero Stress

Drafting a living will or an advance directive yourself may be difficult since you may not know what to include in it. The good news is that you don’t have to hire attorneys to do it for you or use low-grade online samples. DoNotPay solves the matter in a heartbeat by providing you with a personalized living will based on your medical care wishes!

All you should do is:

  1. Access DoNotPay
  2. Pick Advance Health Care Directive
  3. Provides us with the names of your health care agent/witnesses
  4. Tell us more about the instructions you want to include in your living will

Besides generating the document, our app can also help you schedule a meeting with a remote notary and get your living will notarized from the comfort of your home!

Read our knowledge base to learn more about other health care directives, living will costs, the contrast between a health care proxy and a power of attorney, and much more!

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