Today government introduced The Wills Amendment Act, 2022, which will enable the creation of electronic wills and use of electronic signatures and remote witnessing.

An electronic will is a reliable document that, once stored, can be easily retrieved for future use. The Act sets out the criteria that must be met for an electronic will to be valid in Saskatchewan, as well as provisions for revoking an electronic will.

“As many daily legal transactions already rely on the use of electronic documentation, it makes sense to modernize legislation to provide people with the option to create a legal and valid electronic will,” Minister of Justice and Attorney General Bronwyn Eyre said. “These amendments don’t require that anyone create an electronic will instead of a paper will. Paper wills are still completely valid in Saskatchewan.”

To be valid, an electronic will must be in electronic form and signed electronically by the testator before two witnesses, one of whom is a lawyer, who also attest to and sign the will. If an electronic will is revoked it cannot be revived, and a new will must be created.

This legislation aligns with recommendations made by the Uniform Law Conference of Canada and recent changes made to will legislation in other provinces.

As with a paper will, the creation of an electronic will requires that someone be over 18, of sound mind, and free from undue influence or pressure.