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Executive Order

NY Governor Executive Orders 2020 (Remote Notarization)

Notary Law Update: NY Governor Executive Orders 2020 (Remote Notarization)

State: New York

Summary:

New York Governor Cuomo issues a temporary executive order allowing notarizations to be performed using communication technology.

Signed:  March 20, 2020

Effective:  March 20, 2020

Chapter: N/A

Affects:

All New York Notaries Public.

Changes:
  1. Authorizes any notarial act that is required under New York state law to be performed utilizing audio-video technology provided that certain conditions are met.
  2. Requires the person seeking the Notary's services, if not personally known to the Notary, to present valid photo ID to the Notary during the video conference, not merely transmit it prior to or after.
  3. Requires the video conference to allow for direct interaction between the person and the Notary (e.g. no pre-recorded videos of the person signing).
  4. Requires the person seeking notarization to affirmatively represent that he or she is physically situated in the state of New York.
  5. Requires the person seeking notarization to transmit by fax or electronic means a legible copy of the signed document directly to the Notary on the same date it was signed.
  6. Permits the Notary to notarize the transmitted copy of the document and transmit the same back to the person.
  7. Permits the Notary to repeat the notarization of the original signed document as of the date of execution provided the Notary receives such original signed document together with the electronically notarized copy within thirty days after the date of execution.
Analysis:

New York Governor Cuomo issues the first state executive order affecting the way notarial acts are performed as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. New York has been hard hit by the novel coronavirus, resulting in broad stay-at-home orders for state residents. In such a situation, face-to-face notarizations would jeopardize the health of both the document signer and Notary. Governor Cuomo showed leadership in recognizing the importance of making notarial acts available for all documents required by state law to be notarized, but the NNA believes it would have been much better for the order to have required these notarizations to be performed using reputable remote online notarization vendors who implement two-factor identification and authentication as part of the procedure for performing a remote online notarial act. The order is effective immediately but is temporary. It will expire on April 18, 2020.

Read the executive order.

Knowledge Center