NV Senate Bill 23 | NNA
Law

NV Senate Bill 23

Notary Law Update: NV Senate Bill 23

State: Nevada

Summary:

Senate Bill 23 will allow any individual who is unable to affix a signature to execute a document using a signature stamp.

Signed:  May 10, 2005

Effective:  October 01, 2005

Chapter: 83

Affects:

Amends Nevada Revised Statutes Chapter 426.

Changes:
  1. Recognizes the legality and use of a signature stamp by persons with a physical disability who are unable to make a handwritten signature.
  2. Defines “signature stamp” as a stamp containing (a) an impression of a signer’s actual signature; (b) a symbol or mark adopted by the person as his or her signature; or (c) the signature made by another person that is adopted by the physically disabled signer as his or her signature.
  3. Specifies that in signing situations in which other qualifying requirements apply, the person with a disability using a signature stamp is required to meet these qualifying requirements.
  4. Requires the Office of Disability Services in the Department of Human Resources to adopt standards regarding the development, use, and verification of signature stamps
Analysis:

Senate Bill 23 will enable any individual who is unable to affix a signature to execute a document using a signature stamp. The new law does not address whether the person “signing” with a signature stamp must affix the impression; perhaps this question will be answered in the standards and regulations that are forthcoming.

To accommodate physically disabled signers who cannot affix a signature, certain states (Florida, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota,Texas, and Washington) have enacted legislation in recent years allowing a Notary or other person to affix a signature for a physically disabled document signer. The Model Notary Act favors this approach (§ 5-1(d)).

Due to the possibility for abuse and fraud, it is the exception rather than the rule to allow disabled signers to use a signature stamp. Oregon and South Dakota allow Notaries to notarize facsimile-stamped signatures; Illinois expressly prohibits it.

The Notary Public Code of Professional Responsibility advises Notaries to “refuse to notarize any signature not affixed by hand in pen and ink, unless the law expressly allows otherwise” (IV-D-2).

Whether Senate Bill 23 allows Notaries to use a facsimile signature stamp in the same manner as other physically disabled signers is unclear, but the Nevada Secretary of State’s office has indicated it is awaiting the issuance of the rules to shed light on this issue.

With the broadening of the term “signature” under E-SIGN and the UETA to include affixation of a signature by electronic technologies, the use of facsimile signature stamps may gain greater acceptance as simply another “technology” (albeit not electronic) to sign a document.

Read the bill text.

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