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Law

OR House Bill 4212

Notary Law Update: OR House Bill 4212

State: Oregon

Summary:

House Bill 4212 temporarily authorizes Notaries to perform notarial acts for remotely located individuals.

Signed:  June 30, 2020

Effective:  June 30, 2020

Chapter: TBD

Affects:

Amends Sections 194.225, 194.290, 194.305, 194.400 of and adds as yet uncodified sections to the Oregon Revised Code.

Changes:
  1. Defines “communication technology”, “foreign state”, “identity proofing”, “outside the United States” and “remotely located individual”.
  2. Clarifies that a remotely located individual may comply with the requirement to personally appear for a notarial act by using communication technology.
  3. Allows a Notary to perform a notarial act using communication technology for a remotely located individual if the Notary is able to identify the individual through personal knowledge, the oath or affirmation of a credible witness, or using at least two different types of identity proofing.
  4. Allows a Notary to perform a notarial act using communication technology for a remotely located individual if the Notary is able reasonably to confirm that a record before the Notary is the same record in which the remotely located individual made a statement or on which the individual executed a signature.
  5. Allows a Notary to perform a notarial act using communication technology for a remotely located individual if the Notary, or a person acting on behalf of the Notary, creates an audiovisual recording of the performance of the notarial act.
  6. Allows a Notary to perform a notarial act using communication technology for a remotely located individual outside the United States if the record: (a) is to be filed with or relates to a matter before a public official or court, governmental entity, or other entity subject to the jurisdiction of the United States or (b) involves property located in the territorial jurisdiction of the United States or involves a transaction substantially connected with the United States; and the act of making the statement or signing the record is not prohibited by the foreign state in which the remotely located individual is located.
  7. Requires a certificate of notarial act using communication technology for a remotely located individual to indicate the act was performed using communication technology.
  8. Provides that a short-form certificate for a notarial act using communication technology for a remotely located individual is sufficient if it complies with rules adopted by the Secretary of State or is in the form provided in ORS 194.285 and contains a statement substantially as follows: "This notarial act involved the use of communication technology."
  9. Requires a Notary, a guardian, conservator, or agent of a Notary, or a personal representative of a deceased Notary to retain the audiovisual recording of the notarial act for a remotely located individual or cause the recording to be retained by a repository designated by or on behalf of the person required to retain the recording.
  10. Provides that unless a different period is required by rule, the recording of a notarial act for a remotely located individual must be retained for a period of at least 10 years after the recording is made.
  11. Requires a Notary to notify the Secretary of State that the Notary will be performing notarial acts with respect to remotely located individuals and identify the technologies the Notary intends to prior to performing the Notary's initial notarial act for a remotely located individual.
  12. Provides that if the Secretary of State has established standards for approval of communication technology or identity proofing, the communication technology and identity proofing must conform to the standards.
  13. Provides that the Secretary of State may adopt rules for performing notarial acts with respect to remotely located individuals and provides standards for the rules.
  14. Authorizes a notarial officer to certify that a tangible copy of an electronic record is an accurate copy of the electronic record.
  15. Clarifies that an official stamp of a Notary is an official notarial seal for all purpose under Oregon law.
  16. Clarifies that a county clerk may accept for recording a tangible copy of an electronic record containing a notarial certificate as satisfying any requirement that a record accepted for recording be an original, if the notarial officer executing the notarial certificate certifies that the tangible copy is an accurate copy of the electronic record.
  17. Authorizes a Notary to charge a fee not to exceed $25 for a notarial act involving a remotely located individual.
Analysis:

During its special 2020 legislative session, the Oregon Legislature has passed, and the Governor has signed, a bill temporarily authorizing Notaries to perform notarial acts for remotely located individuals. The provisions of House Bill 4212 are based on the Uniform Law Commission’s Revised Uniform Law on Notarial Acts (RULONA) 2018 amendments. This is appropriate because Oregon previously had enacted the RULONA provisions for notarial acts and notarial acts respecting electronic records. The provisions of the bill are only effective until June 30, 2021, at which time they are repealed.

Read the bill text.

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