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Webcam Notarization 2018: What You Need To Know


As more states consider passing laws authorizing webcam notarizations, the practice continues to raise questions among Notaries and signers alike. What is webcam notarization? Where can it be performed? Who can request it?

Here are answers to the most common questions.

What Is Webcam Notarization?

With webcam notarization, a signer personally appears before the Notary at the time of the notarization using audio-visual technology over the internet instead of being physically present in the same room. Webcam notarization is also called remote notarization or online notarization.

Most states still require the signer and Notary to be in each other’s physical presence.

Where Can It Be Performed?

Currently, only 4 states have authorized the practice.

Virginia in 2011 became the first state to enact a law allowing its duly commissioned electronic Notaries to perform remote notarizations for signers who are anywhere in the world. 

In 2015, Montana became the second state to allow the practice but with a number of restrictions. Montana also is the only state that allows a paper document to be notarized when the signer and Notary appear online.

Last year, Texas and Nevada enacted laws authorizing remote notarization, and both measures go into effect on July 1, 2018. Both states are currently drafting rules to implement their new remote notarization laws.

Are Other States Considering It?

So far in 2018, 10 state legislatures and the District of Columbia are considering webcam measures.

These states have pending bills that would allow online Notaries to perform notarizations for signers anywhere in the world.

  • Florida
  • Indiana
  • Kentucky
  • Nebraska
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Dakota 
  • Tennessee

The measures pending in these jurisdictions would restrict remote notarizations to signers outside of the U.S.:

  • District of Columbia
  • Minnesota

Legislation in Missouri defines the words “personally appeared” or “before me” to include two-way live video and audio conference communication and requires the Secretary of State to develop standards and rules to implement them.

In addition, Maryland is considering a bill that would set up a task force to study webcam notarization. 

For details about each proposed bill, visit the NNA’s Notary Policy Tracking page.

Michael Lewis is Managing Editor of member publications for the National Notary Association.

Additional Resources:

Model eNotarization Act of 2017






Add your comment


19 Feb 2018

Will webcam/remote notarization include Form I-9?

National Notary Association

20 Feb 2018

Hello. Working with I-9 forms is a separate issue from webcam notarizations. For more information, please see this article:


21 Feb 2018

Will webcam notarization only include just general notary service?

National Notary Association

21 Feb 2018

Hello. It's probably too soon to tell how webcam notarization will be received by different industries. At the present time, webcam notarization is still in its very early stages and as mentioned in the article above, only permitted in two states currently, with two more states authorizing webcam notarizations as of July 2018.

Tim Gatewood

02 Mar 2018

Interesting article, although I hate to see this atrocity spreading, as it will ultimately kill the NSA business and cut deep into general notary work. In any case, you may want to check your list of states that have bills pending, as the NASS shows Colorado (which is not on your list) and you show OK and DC (which are not on their list), as well as these revisions for MO and MD (that are on your list but not on theirs). You can see their list here:

Notary of the springs

17 Mar 2018

No real rules are defining whether one can notarize via webcam in Florida or not . I know additional rules are pending till 2019, but no one including Tallahassee can give me a clear answer......but they haven’t said no either....

Linda J Hubbell

12 Apr 2018

As an update, Florida's bill died and has been withdrawn.


15 Oct 2018

Is the electronically notarized document acceptable in, let’s say, California? I know CA notaries are not allowed to perform it, but if a client has an electronically notarized document, will it be accepted to be used in CA and accepted by the CA agencies at all?

National Notary Association

17 Oct 2018

Hi Michelle. You would need to contact the agencies the electronic document is to be sent to to ask them if they would accept it or not.


04 Jan 2019

I am in Texas and I called the National Notary Association to inquire about using webcam. I was instructed to call the Secretary of State office to get set up. However, the SOS office referred me to their website to set up online; however, I do not see a link on their site addressing web cam notarization.

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