There has been a recent development with e-signatures now being accepted in place of physical signatures on documents. However, the rules have not yet been extended to Wills and Lasting Powers of Attorney.
A Will needs to be signed in the presence of two independent witnesses and each witness in turn signs and inserts their full details, in the presence of the other witness and the person making the Will.
The witness needs to be independent i.e. not related to the person making the Will, is an adult and not a beneficiary of the Will nor related to a beneficiary of the Will.
These are strict rules and although there have been discussions over relaxation and videoing signature, these arrangements have not been confirmed.
Similarly, Lasting Powers of Attorney need to be signed by the “donor” i.e. the person making the document in the presence of one witness. This witness needs to be an adult and cannot be an attorney but could for instance be the certificate provider i.e. someone who has known the donor for a minimum of 2 years such as a friend, neighbour, colleague or a professional. If the donor is unable to sign the document, then two witnesses are needed.
Bromleys are able to draft your legal documents complying with the necessary standards and advise you on the various ways in which Wills can be signed, again to fulfil the required formalities.
Call our dedicated Wills and Probate and Planning for the Future helpline on 0161 694 4147 for assistance.