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Signing a will, having it witnessed & witnesses

Must a witness to a will be a justice of the peace (JP)?

No.  Some people ask whether a JP must witness a will or whether a JP must sign a will.  The law does not require that a JP must witness or must sign a will.  Below are links going to the provisions on executing a will under the respective state and territory succession laws. 

Can a JP witness a will?

Yes.  A JP may witness a will providing they can see and verify (ie attest), if ever called upon to do so, that they were present with the will-maker and saw them make their signature on the will document.   Note that the role of a JP is to witness a person making their signature on important, legal documents such as statutory declarations, affidavits and to certify copies of original documents as being a true and faithful copy.  Find out more about what a JP is legally entitled to do in your state/territory by searching your state government’s website.

Finding a Justice of the Peace (JP)

For information on what JP’s are authorised to do or where to find one visit the Justices of the Peace pages online.  Links to the state/territory government’s sites are below:


New South Wales Justices of the Peace in NSW
Victoria Royal Victorian Association of Honorary Justices
Queensland Find a Justice of the Peace
South Australia Find a Justice of the Peace
Tasmania Find a Justice of the Peace
Western Australia Find a Justice of the Peace
Northern Territory Justice of the Peace & Commissioner for Oaths
ACT Find a Justice of the Peace

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