Which States in the U.S. Allow Remote Online Notarization?

If you are a small business owner operating in a fast-paced and highly connected world, you know how crucial it is to get a job done quickly and accurately to keep the workflow moving forward.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, notaries were a rarely sought service. However, this has all changed, not only as a result of the pandemic but also due to our constant need for information. Notaries nationwide can now help people in other states get their documents notarized. The process is known as remote online notarization.

The growing need for remote online notarization services gave rise to new opportunities for remote and mobile notaries. Since then, more states have opened up their laws to allow this practice due to its ease and security compared with traditional in-person notarization.

What is Remote Online Notarization, and How Does It Work?

Remote online notarization (RON) is a secure, efficient, and cost-effective way of notarizing documents. It also allows you to access the documents you need for virtually any purpose quickly. With RON, there are no longer any restrictions on when or where you can get your documents notarized. 

Remote online notarizations have many advantages over traditional in-person notarizations, including safety, convenience, and time-saving benefits. Personal appearance is not required for the parties to be present to sign a document; thus, instantaneous signing is possible using this method. Using this technology, you can access your certified notary from anywhere and at any time.

Remote online notarization has proven to be a lifesaver for many. The main reason why it has become prevalent is that it allows you to seek notarization without having to leave your home. This is ideal for people who need documents signed but don’t want to deal with making an appointment or driving to the office. Remote online notarization allows you to click away from your desk and still accomplish everything you need.

Performing online notarizations is a straightforward, simple process, and it does not require you to have any special computer or software. However, it’s best if your document is already in an electronic file format—so if you don’t have an electronic copy of the document(s) that you need to have notarized, scan them first, then use the scanner to create the .pdf or .jpg files that you need.

Which states allow online notary in 2022?

If you’re a resident of one of these states, you may use the Remote Online Notarization to notarize documents. These are the 41 states that have adopted permanent RON laws:

Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming.

State laws regarding remote notarization vary from state to state. If signers are unsure of their state’s regulations, they should consult with their county or town clerks’ offices. Additionally, notaries must familiarize themselves with the applicable state law before an online notarial act because each state has specific laws and regulations determining how RON services must be carried out.

Which states allow temporary online notarization in 2022?

The American Bar Association’s Legal Technology Resource Center (LTRC) keeps track of developments related to remote online notarization in each state. Here are the five states that allow some temporary online notarization in 2022

  • Alabama (per Senate Bill 275)
  • Georgia (per Executive Order
  • Maine (through June 23, 2023, per Executive Order 37 FY 19/20)
  • Mississippi (per Executive Order No. 1467); and
  • Rhode Island (temporarily allows online notarization)

States that don’t allow online notary in 2022

While remote online notarization services are allowed in 41 states, five states don’t allow online notary in 2022. These states are as follows:

  • Connecticut. Temporarily authorized remote online notarization services due to COVID-19. However, this authorization has expired as of July 1, 2021.
  • California. It does not allow any remote online notarization services at this time.
  • Delaware. There is, however, currently nothing in Delaware statutes that prohibits an individual or business from using a remote notary from states who permit remote notarization)
  • District Of Columbia. It does not allow any remote online notarization services at this time.
  • Massachusetts. It temporarily authorized remote online notarization services due to COVID-19. However, this authorization has expired as of December 15, 2021.

What Documents Can Be Notarized Remotely

Remote notarization can be used for a range of purposes, such as but not limited to:

  • Getting a document apostilled or legalized by the Department of State
  • Obtaining a copy of your birth certificate from the Vital Records office in your state
  • Obtaining copies of divorce decrees or marriage certificates from the appropriate county clerk’s office.

However, each state has laws regarding what can and cannot be initially notarized remotely. Some states will allow us to do everything online, while others require the clients to visit their local county clerk and sign with their physical signature, so be sure and check with your local government before you begin your project.

How to Become a Licensed Remote Online Notary

To become a licensed notary in any state, you need to pass an exam that consists of questions on notarization rules and ethics. Once you complete the test, you are eligible to apply for a permit. You can then perform your duties as long as there is an agreement between parties involved in a transaction or signing ceremony. 

The documents to be signed can vary from public documents like city council resolutions to private documents such as deeds and wills. Some parts of the state that can conduct remote notarization include Texas, Virginia, and Alaska

The SECURE Notarization Act

We already know that in the past, notarization was done in person, and it can be done remotely using a webcam and a document scanner.

The SECURE Notarization Act (H.R. 6147) was introduced to Congress on March 18th, 2015, by Representative Ted Poe of Texas and Representative John Conyers of Michigan to extend the power of notaries public to sign documents and perform other official acts remotely electronically. This means a person can sign a document from their computer, tablet, or smartphone. The act was passed by the Senate on September 27th, 2017, and was signed into law by President Trump on October 12th, 2017.

This act ensures that every document is valid and legally binding, even remotely signed. It also ensures that the signer’s identity cannot be faked or forged.

The SECURE Notarization Act has many benefits for business owners and consumers. Businesses can conduct transactions with people in other countries more efficiently, allowing them to expand their markets globally. Consumers will also benefit as they no longer need to deal with complicated paperwork when buying.

Final Thoughts

Remote online notarization is an innovative technology that allows a document to be notarized without being physically present. This technology can potentially change how business is done locally and globally.

The future of remote online notarization is promising, and it has already been adopted by various countries, and companies and some states in the U.S. This new technology has numerous advantages: it saves time, money, and resources, increases user convenience, eliminates fraud, and reduces environmental impact.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *