The COVID-19 pandemic and physical distancing practices have shifted various aspects of life from in-person to digital with everything from weddings to court hearings moving online. The option to sign your will virtually may be headed that way in Colorado too.
The Electronic Wills Committee of the Colorado Bar Association is studying policies and procedures to potentially allow clients who want a will to be in a different physical location from witnesses and the notary who make the will legally binding.
Under the proposed Uniform Electronic Wills Act the committee plans to bring before the Colorado legislature, the person creating the will (known as the testator) or an authorized person in their name and at least two witnesses or a notary public can sign the will while in each other’s physical or electronic presence. The testator’s signature can be digitally affixed to the electronic will.
An electronic will would include affidavits with uniform language that specifies that the will was executed electronically.
While digital wills are undoubtedly on the horizon, at Andersen Law PC, we choose to have witnesses in the conscious presence of the party signing the will. That makes the will self-authenticating and it’s easier to uphold questions about whether the witnesses adequately watched the party sign the will.
For this reason, we always use two witnesses and a notary for powers of attorney. We even get a doctor’s note as needed. We also observe and ask questions regarding competency and duress.
All these factors make our wills and estate planning documents among the best and most reliable in all circumstances.
We will continue to follow this and other pending legislation relevant to our clients and share relevant updates.
To learn more about your estate planning options, contact Andersen Law PC for your free consultation at 720-922-3880 or contact Beth Andersen directly on her cell at 303-808-4794.