is operated by PartingWishes Inc., a privately held corporation based in Ottawa, Ontario,
Canada, providing services which span the globe. We are an independent
organization, not tied to a funeral home or law firm. We provide services
which make use of the ultimate convenience of the Internet and the latest in
secure encryption technologies. The company was formed out of the need to
create a simple, convenient approach to funeral pre-arrangement and estate
planning. It is accessible anytime, anywhere and without pretense or
Our mandate is to allow people to document, maintain and communicate their
parting wishes in a very easy, convenient, private, secure and cost-effective
manner, without the need to pay for the high expenses of a lawyer. This includes
U.S., Canadian and international legal documents such as wills (Last Will and
Testament), power of attorney, living wills, funeral plans, online memorials,
last messages, medical health care directives, estate planning and other advance
But we go far beyond any do-it-yourself kit or online repository of legal
forms and documents. If you wish, all of your legal documents can be stored and
maintained by you online, in a completely private and secure manner. This will
ensure that you can keep it updated to reflect any changes in your financial or
family situation .
More information regarding the Executive Team can be found on the
About Us page.
Membership allows you to document your funeral wishes,
create your Last Will and Testament and specify other "advance directives".
By becoming a member you will receive information and guidance for some issues
that you may not have given much consideration. You can then store your
instructions on our secure server, make unlimited amendments and updates, and
have them unlocked by a trusted friend or loved one when they are needed.
For an informative and eye-opening comparison of the MyWill™ service to
do-it-yourself legal will kits, read about it here.
Quite frankly, there is no comparison. First of all, there is no single
web site or do-it-yourself kit that offers the full range of services that we
provide here at PartingWishes.com.
We have evaluated many existing
do-it-yourself kits and web-based services, including several of the most
popular American legal do-it-yourself kits and Canadian legal do-it-yourself
kits. We were shocked by the poor quality, limited instructions, and low value
for money that many of these do-it-yourself kits provide consumers. We
have designed all of our services to be of the best quality available today.
Furthermore, our membership pricing model also allows us to provide you with the
most value for your money at prices that are unprecedented in the legal and
funeral planning industries.
By making use of our services conveniently online over the Internet, there is
no need to purchase a do-it-yourself kit in the first place, nor do you need to
purchase an upgraded version every year. Our pay-one-price membership
model protects your investment for the rest of your life. Our wizards,
help and information are also designed to be the best on the market and are kept
up-to-date on an ongoing basis.
In addition, all of our services provide you with complete instructions and
answer your questions in everyday language, free of legal industry jargon.
We have developed our services based on the requirements of the public, not
dictated by the legal profession.
Furthermore, our unique approach allows you to make use of the ultimate
convenience of the Internet to create your legal documents and complete your
services at your own pace, online, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and to make
changes online at any time free of charge.
By storing your information online, it also becomes easy to locate and
access by your designated friends or family members when the time is right.
For example, if you are hospitalized and unable to communicate, it is important
that your family and doctor have access to your health care directives.
And when you pass away it is important for your family members to have timely
access to your funeral wishes.
Combined with this is a strong focus on protecting the privacy and
security of your information. We use industry standard encryption
algorithms for storing all of your private information, and the design of
this web site ensures that the contents of your information are made
available to the specific people designated by yourself, and only at the
If you wish, we can even inform you by email about any changes in
which may have occurred in your jurisdiction that may require changes to your
legal documents. Or we can send you simple email reminders, no more than
once a year, to remind you to consider updating your legal documents if any
significant changes have occurred in your life.
Other web sites and do-it-yourself kits simply do not compare. Also,
take a look at the news article warning about
the use of do-it-yourself will kits.
A "Keyholder®" is someone that you decide to trust with the power to unlock
your wishes when the time is right. Each Keyholder® is assigned a private,
secure, randomly-generated "Keyholder® ID" which they will use to login and
access your wishes when it is eventually required. In particular, a
Keyholder® is expected to login only
after you have passed away or have become mentally incapacitated.
You can designate up to 20 different Keyholders® and you can even specify,
for each Keyholder®, what specific information they can unlock, such as your
health care directives, funeral wishes, or your Will. Security mechanisms
to prevent unauthorized premature access to your wishes are also available and
are fully configurable by you. More information is provided to members in
the MyKeyholders™ service.
There is simply no other company that provides such a complete and convenient
service to their customers.
See our Services page for more information about
all of the services we offer.
At the present time, we are giving away a Bronze membership free of charge
to all new members. With a Bronze membership, you can document your
funeral wishes using the MyFuneral™ service, prepare final messages using the
MyMessages™ service, create online memorials with the MyMemorials™ service,
specify your security preferences using the MySecurity™ service, and identify
your personal Keyholders® using the MyKeyholders™ service. All for free,
with unlimited updates for 1 year.
We do charge a small fee for some of the other services to cover our
expenses, including the MyWalletCards™ service. Beyond this we offer additional
membership packages for a small fee that give you access to the premium
services. The complete pricing structure is available on our
Our costs involved in offering the free services (such as MyFuneral™,
MyMessages™ and MyMemorials™) are covered by our members who purchase or upgrade
to higher membership packages. We are confident that once you have used
some of our free services you will be convinced of the superior quality and
value we provide and that you will want to upgrade to a higher membership
package in order to make use of premium services such as MyWill™,
Due to our membership pricing structure, all of our premium services are
offered at very low prices, unparalleled in the industry. We are confident
that you will find them to be an amazing value, plus the added convenience of
having all of your services available to you 24 hours a day over the Internet
from any web browser in the world. The complete pricing structure is
available on our
Documenting your funeral wishes with the MyFuneral™ service simply allows you
to state your preferences for the way you would like your body to be treated
after you have passed away. It also tells people the kind of ceremony you
would like, and the kinds of expenses that you feel should be incurred.
Anybody is free to express their own funeral wishes. There is no
restriction on age, religion, location or health. Similarly, anyone can
prepare final messages using the MyMessages™ service, or create an online
memorial using the MyLife™ or MyMemorials™ services.
Anyone can also use the MyLifeLocker™
service to store their personal information.
The legal services we offer, such as MyWill™,
MyLivingWill™ can also be used by anybody, however there may be some
restrictions on the legality of these documents based on local laws. For
example, in most areas a minor cannot create a legal Will. We would
recommend in some cases that you have your documents verified by a practicing
lawyer in your region. More details about this are available in the help
text of the specific service.
All of your information stored at
is private, safe and
secure. Your information is so highly encrypted that nobody has access to
this information other than yourself and your trusted Keyholders® using their
randomly generated personal key. Even the owners and administrators of
are not able to access your private information due to the
software design and encryption methods used.
Note, however, that some services require temporary decryption of a member's documents
as part of the operation of providing that service.
For example, if the member wants to have their Will reviewed by one of our legal
professionals, or wants to have their documents printed and mailed to them, then
the software will automatically decrypt these documents as part of the member's
instructions to have these services performed.
This web site uses state-of-the-art digital encryption and security
technologies to protect your privacy and security. All data passing from
your computer to this web site is authenticated and encrypted using 128-bit
"SSL encryption". This is the most advanced level of encryption available
today, and it means that any information sent from your computer is scrambled in
a way which makes it completely unintelligible if intercepted. When you
are on a secure section within the web site (i.e. after you have
logged in as a member), a padlock will appear on your web
browser. This is your assurance that the encryption is in place
and that you are communicating across a secure link.
Furthermore, this web site uses an industry standard high security
streaming-encryption algorithm known as "RSA" to encrypt all of your information
before it is stored online. RSA is a public-key cryptosystem developed by
MIT professors Ronald
Rivest, Adi Shamir and Leonard Adleman. To give you a
feeling for the level of security provided by this encryption, it has been
estimated that with the most efficient algorithms known to date, it would take a
computer operating at 1 million instructions per second over 300 quintillion
years (that's 3 with 20 zeros behind it!) to break the encryption. That's
several trillion times longer than the age of the Earth.
All of our data is securely stored in a highly encrypted format on database
servers in the USA. To protect against catastrophic data loss, daily backups are
performed on each of our servers to locations in Canada and the U.S. Hence, if
any one of our servers experienced technical difficulties, the data would not be
Furthermore, physical protection of our primary systems includes:
- Fire detection and fire suppression systems with dry pipe pre-action
- N + 1 redundant power supplies, providing dual power feeds and backup
batteries, water coolant systems and generators
- N + 1 redundant climate control, providing primary and backup chiller
units, cooling towers, and water storage
- Local network operations center (NOC) for monitoring all data center
- 24x7 monitoring and support of network connection and server
- 24x7 uniformed guard service with interior and exterior closed-circuit
- Electronic access at all data center entrances, including biometric hand
- Electronic key management systems and individually keyed cabinets
As you can see, we take the security and privacy of all of our member
information very seriously.
We are proud to offer a 30-day, no questions asked, 100% money
back guarantee on all paid memberships. If after joining as a member
you do not feel that you have received valuable information and value for your
money, we will gladly refund the cost of your membership.
We keep your information stored on a secure server for a
number of reasons. First of all, it allows you to make unlimited
modifications and updates to this information without having to rewrite it each
time. It also allows your wishes to be centrally located, accessible at
any time from anywhere in the world via the Internet, after you have passed
away. In addition, we keep your information completely
safe and secure. It will not get lost, and only the people that you
authorize to have access to your information (your "Keyholders®") will ever be
able to access it. Finally, by keeping your details with
you will ensure that your wishes and requests are made
available to the people who need them, at the right time.
You are, however, still able to print all of your personal information for
your own records if you wish. If you have a safe place in your home that a
loved one knows about, you can place your parting wishes there after you have
printed them from this web site.
As soon as you have created your parting wishes, you will be able to specify
your trusted "Keyholders®". Keyholders® are those people whom you decide
to trust with the power to unlock your wishes when the time is right.
These people will be told of their responsibilities and given a randomly
generated secure key. You will also have the option of sending them a
plastic wallet card with their secure key printed on it.
It is important that you choose Keyholders® who are sufficiently close to you
that they will know when they need to access your parting wishes. Once
they are given access to your information, they will be able to view and print
your parting wishes.
Your first line of defence is to select your Keyholders® wisely. Most
likely, you will choose members of your family or close friends whom you trust
to protect your privacy. You will not want to choose someone who might be
so curious about your wishes that they would be tempted to access them before
they are needed. However, even in this case, there are security measures
in place that will alert you to unauthorized access if you so desire.
In particular, any one of your Keyholders® is able to request access to your
information simply by logging in at
as a Keyholder® using the
randomly generated secure key that you communicated to them. As soon as
they login or request to unlock any of your information, you will be sent an
email explaining which Keyholder® is attempting to access your information.
As a member, you can configure a time period for each of your services which
provides you with a window when you can deny access to this information.
If you do not deny access to the Keyholder®, then your information will be
unlocked for that Keyholder® and they can view and print your parting wishes.
In addition, you can even specify for each of your Keyholders® which specific
information they have the power to unlock.
Yes, we accept all major credit cards, as well as personal checks
or money orders. If you are making a purchase, you will be provided with
further instructions regarding your options.
Absolutely. Your credit card information is only used for
purchases and it is never stored by us. Furthermore, all credit card purchases
are through a secure gateway which protects all of your transactions by powerful
Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption technology and Private Communication
Technology (PCT) security standards supported by Internet Explorer,
Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and other popular browsers. SSL encrypts your credit card
number, name, address, and telephone number before they travel over the
Internet, and this information is never stored, nor is it recorded by the secure
site. This makes doing business over the Internet as secure as purchasing by
telephone or handing your credit card to a waiter in a restaurant.
The funeral wishes you specify using the MyFuneral™ service does not produce
a legal document. It simply expresses your desires for how you would like
your body to be handled, the style of ceremony you would like, and other related
preferences. There is no legal requirement for your Keyholder® or for your
family to observe and respect these wishes. However, in practice the
expression of your parting wishes is of great help to your next of kin and to
your funeral arranger. In most cases surviving family members and friends
will attempt to grant such documented wishes wherever possible.
According to current laws in most jurisdictions, your Will, Living Will and
Power of Attorney documents must be signed and witnessed in order for them to be
admissible in a court of law. More information about this and the
instructions for doing so are provided to our members.
However, "electronic signature" laws are moving rapidly and we are
closely monitoring these laws to support the future electronic notarization
of documents, or even the electronic signature of legal documents such as your
Will, Living Will and Power of Attorney. It is only a matter of time
before this becomes standard practice in the preparation of legal documents.
In the meantime, although the unsigned versions of your documents stored
online at this web site are not legal documents, if you wish you can allow
one or more of your designated Keyholders® to have access to the documents that
you have created here at
This could be important if
your legally signed copies cannot be located (for example, if they burned in a
house fire). In this situation, your
copies of your
originally constructed documents can still provide some guidance to a loving
family, as they can understand how you have documented your wishes.
There is no requirement to use the services of a lawyer or notary public to
prepare your own legal Last Will and Testament. The law that defines the legality
of a Will is written specifically for each Province, State and Country, but in summary
the law requires that the Will is written on a piece of paper and signed in the
presence of two witnesses who cannot be beneficiaries to the Will. Lawyers can
certainly help you to prepare your Will, but everybody has a legal right to write
their own Will. If you create a document using our service, it must be printed,
signed and witnessed according to our instructions, and then it becomes a legal
Last Will and Testament.
is not a legal firm. We do not offer legal advice.
If your situation is complex, or you have any questions regarding your funeral
service, estate planning, Will, Living Will or Power of Attorney, we strongly
recommend that you talk to a practicing lawyer in your area.
Most of our services here at PartingWishes.com
are completely international. They can be used by anyone in any country in the world.
Services such as MyFuneral™,
and MyMemorials™ do not create legal documents and
make no assumptions about your country of residence.
In the US, Canada, England and Wales, we have worked extensively to ensure that the legal
documents created by the MyWill™,
and MyLivingWill™ services are up to date
with the laws in all of the states in the United States and the provinces in
Canada, including: Alabama, Alaska, Alberta, Arizona, Arkansas, British
Columbia, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia,
Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky,
Maine, Manitoba, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi,
Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, New Hampshire,
New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Northwest
Territories, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Ohio, Oklahoma, Ontario, Oregon,
Pennsylvania, Prince Edward Island, Rhode Island, Saskatchewan, South Carolina,
South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Washington
D.C., West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, and Yukon Territory. Hence, these
services can be used to generate legal documents in any state in the United
States with the exception of Louisiana, and any Canadian province with the
exception of Quebec, and in England and Wales in the United Kingdom.
Furthermore, the MyPowerOfAttorney™
service is available for all States in the United States except Louisiana, and
for all Provinces in Canada except Quebec. In the UK, power of attorney forms
are provided free of charge by the government.
Note that even in unsupported areas, there is value in stepping through the
wizards provided in these services in preparation for a consultation with an
attorney. It is strongly recommended that residents outside of the above
supported states/provinces/countries seek legal advice even after completing the
wizards. Local laws in these unsupported areas have not been considered in the
structure of the legal documents.
If you have any doubts about the legal standing of any documents in your
jurisdiction, feel free to seek legal counsel in your area to have your
If you choose, you can receive occasional email updates from
us regarding any new services that become available, special
offers available only to our members, or any other information
that we feel might be of interest to our members. These will likely be
sent out once every few months. You can of course choose not to receive
any emails and we will not send you any information unless
requested to do so.
We absolutely do not share member information with
any other organization. We have no affiliate companies, partners or
interests in any other organizations. You will not receive any other
mailings based on a membership at this web site.
In accordance with our very strict privacy policies here at
we will never send any postal mail or email to any of your
Keyholders® outside of your wishes, nor will we ever attempt to contact any of
your Keyholders® in any way. Furthermore, we will not resell, trade, lease
or rent to third parties any personally identifiable information about you or
about any of your designated Keyholders®.
has funding set aside to support the cost of hosting member
information for a number of years into the future based on today's prices.
This money is used as an insurance policy to ensure that even if
ceases to accept new members, that existing member information
will still be maintained. At today's prices (which we anticipate to fall)
even if PartingWishes.com
received no additional revenue, hosting of member data
is secured for another 25 years. Our intention is to increase this fund to
support ongoing costs for a minimum of 100 years, which is well beyond the
advance directive needs of any of our members.
Nevertheless, if for whatever reason you believe that
cease to exist in the future, you can still make full use of our services by
viewing and printing your documents and storing them in a safe place. When
they are needed, assuming that your loved ones know where to look, they can
still access your documentation. If used in this way, our pricing
structure still makes the creation of these documents very cost effective for
all of our members, with no dependency on the
PartingWishes.com web site.
has every intention of being here to stay!
When logged in as a member, there is a link on the member home page which allows you to delete
your entire membership. Clicking on this link will result in the permanent deletion of your entire account,
including all of your member information, and any documents or files you have created.
If you make changes to a document or memorial, but you can only
see an "old" version when you view it online, this is because you have "caching"
enabled in your web browser. In certain circumstances, this causes your
browser to access a temporary "cached" version from your hard drive
instead of retrieving the latest one from our web server. If you are using
Internet Explorer, you should clear your cache by selecting Tools > Internet
Options > Temporary Internet Files > Delete Files. If you are using a
different web browser, check your browser's documentation for instructions on
how to clear the cache.
You will have been provided with a Reference Code in your order confirmation
email. If you no longer have this email or did not receive it (likely due to
spam blocking software), you can obtain your Reference Code by logging in and
clicking on the link at the top of your member home page that says "Your
spouse/partner discount (40% off any membership) is still available". When
your spouse/partner steps through the checkout process, copy and paste this code
into the “Reference Code” box and the 40% discount will be automatically
Note that each membership is separate --- each person must join separately
and create their own account.
This is an occasional problem caused by our use of session cookies. It most
commonly occurs when multiple browser windows are open and you log out of one
window. It can also occur when two people with different accounts are sharing
the same computer. The resolution is to close all browser windows between
sessions. Then re-open the browser and login. If this does not resolve the
problem, then please contact us.
If you try to add a picture downloaded directly from a digital camera it is
likely to be extremely large. You should try to reduce the size of the picture
so that the dimensions are about 450 x 300 pixels and save it in "jpg" format.
Usually, this will reduce the size from 2 Megabytes to about 60 Kilobytes (about
30 times smaller). If you are not sure how to do this, email the picture to us,
and we can do it for you.
To renew your membership, you should login to your account by going to
and clicking on the "Member Login" button located at the top-right corner of the page.
Enter your UserID and the Password you selected when you created your account.
Once you have logged in, click on the MyAccount™ service and then select an
option to add additional years to your membership from the drop down list of upgrade options. From here you can
step through the payment process.
First, you should check to see that you have an account with us. You
may have received confirmation of this in an email from
If you have a User ID and Password, then you can log into the site by clicking
here. Once you have logged in, scroll down
to click on the MyWill™ service, and from here you can click on "View
your Will" or "Download and Print your Will (PDF file)". If you have paid and do not
have a User ID or Password, contact us by sending an email to
and we can set up an account for you.
We do not mail out Will kits. We believe that blank forms are a bad
idea and usually lead to legal problems.
There used to be a kit advertised widely on television and radio but this was
heavily criticized and is no longer available. We have developed a truly
interactive service that generates a custom document based on your answers to a
series of questions. This document can then be printed, signed and
witnessed to become your legal Will. You can also store this document
online and make updates to reflect changes in your personal or financial
situation. Each time an update is made, the document must be printed,
signed and witnessed and the previous document should be destroyed.
In order to make a Will that you create on this web site into a legal
document, you should first print it and read it thoroughly. Make sure that it
accurately reflects your wishes and that you understand everything that is
contained in the document. Once you are happy that it reflects your wishes, you
must sign your Will in the presence of at least two witnesses, and these
witnesses must also sign the Will, in the presence of the "testator" (yourself)
and in the presence of each other. You and the witnesses should also initial
each page, so that it is not possible to alter any pages after the Will has been
signed. In most jurisdictions, a witness cannot be a
beneficiary of the Will, they cannot be the spouse of a beneficiary (at the time
of signing), they cannot be a minor, and, like the "testator" (you), they must
be of sound mind. More information about this procedure and the restrictions on who can be
witnesses is included at the end of the
MyWill™ and MyExpatWill™ wizards.
In the U.S. and Canada, after you have passed away the executor of your Will must prove that your
Will was signed properly. In order to do this, at least one of the witnesses
must confirm under oath that the Will was signed and witnessed correctly.
Another more convenient approach, however, is to have the witnesses sign under
oath (in the presence of a Notary Public) an "affidavit" which can then be
appended to the Will. This is an optional step, but it eliminates the need for
the witnesses to testify in court at the probating of the Will. Again, a
detailed description of this procedure is included at the end of the
MyWill™ and MyExpatWill™ wizards.
In England and Wales, the Executor usually has to obtain a "grant of probate"
from the High Court. If the Will has been signed appropriately with two witnesses,
then the grant of probate is usually issued by the court.