To determine the existence of a will or mandate in case of incapacity, you have to conduct a search in the Registers of Testamentary Dispositions and Mandates of the Chambre des notaires du Québec. You will receive a search certificate and, if applicable, the contact information of the notary who is holding the document you are looking for.
The Chambre des notaires du Québec does not receive or hold any wills or mandates. Wills and mandates are not forwarded to the Chambre des notaires du Québec. These acts are held by the notaries in their vaults. The notaries only make a declaration to the Registers that they have received these acts.
Please note that you must make two search requests: one with the Chambre des notaires and one with the Barreau du Québec.
Your notary is obliged to declare the receipt of your notarized will or mandate to the Registers
The Chambre des notaires du Québec Register of Testamentary Dispositions was created in 1961 so that people’s last testament could be found with certainty during the liquidation of their succession. In 1991, the Chambre created a registration system for mandates in case of incapacity. Notaries are obliged, on pain of a fine, to register all wills and mandates they receive with the Registers. As such, this centralized system offers many benefits:
- It protects the confidentiality of the will or mandate, because only its existence is registered.
- It allows your last will to be found after your death and identifies your last mandate in case of incapacity.
- It eliminates the risk that no one will find out about your will or mandate or that it will be found too late during the liquidation of your succession or after your incapacity.
Your notary can register a non-notarized will or mandate with the Registers
Holograph wills, wills before witnesses and mandates in case of incapacity can be declared to the Registers just as notarized wills and mandates can be. They do have to be registered with the Registers through a notary, however. Your will or mandate is recorded in the notary’s minutes as an act of deposit and kept in the vault in the notary’s office.
CONSENT REGISTER FOR ORGAN AND TISSUE DONATIONS
Your notary is obliged to declare the receipt of your consent or refusal to donate your organs and tissues
If you give your free and informed agreement or refusal to donate your organs and tissues after discussing it with your notary, he or she can record your decision in your will or mandate. Your consent or refusal is subsequently registered with the Consent Register for Organ and Tissue Donations of the Chambre des notaires du Québec, which was created on November 1, 2005.
The Register protects the confidentiality of the information received, since only authorized medical personnel can check whether a potential donor has consented to organ and tissue donation. Donors are assured that their last wishes will not be lost. The Register also reassures the family that the donation was given freely, before a witness and by a person in full possession of his or her intellectual faculties.
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