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Florida Notaries Must Use New Certificate Wording Starting January 1, 2020

Florida-sign.jpgStarting January 1, 2020, Florida Notaries must use new certificate wording for acknowledgments and jurats that indicates if the signer appeared in person or by audiovisual communication for the notarization.

The new certificate wording requirement is part of a new Florida law signed last June, which authorizes qualified and registered Notaries to perform remote online notarizations (RON) using audiovisual technology to communicate with a signer in a different location.

Under this new law, a certificate of acknowledgment or jurat must specify whether the signer appeared physically before the Notary or by using audio-video technology.

Where To Get New Florida Notary Certificates

Florida Notaries have several options for where to get compliant certificates:

  • The Florida Secretary of State’s office may have updated samples of notarial certificates on its website in 2020. (Note: The current samples do not reflect the new requirements.)
  • You can create your own certificate templates with the correct wording.
  • You can obtain certificates from an organization such as the National Notary Association. 

The NNA has updated Florida certificates available. NNA Members may download the new certificates for free as a member benefit by logging in to their accounts on the NNA website. Members and non-members can purchase compliant certificates in pad form.

Any current Florida Notary who wishes to use the new certificate wording before January 1 may choose to do so. However, Florida Notaries must check the “physical appearance” box in the new certificate. After January 1, only registered Notaries performing RONs may select the “online notarization” box when completing a certificate. Remember that if you do not use certificate wording compliant with the new law starting January 1, your notarizations will run the risk of rejection.

Readers can check the Notary Bulletin for additional updates and articles about the new Florida Notary law as they become available.

Florida-new-law-ad.jfif

Additional Resources:

Florida Notary Primer

 

23 Comments

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Cindy Ann Murray

14 Nov 2019

Will follow.

Amanda Reeves

14 Nov 2019

How does a Florida notary become register for RON?

National Notary Association

14 Nov 2019

Hello. Starting January 1, 2020, in order to qualify to perform remote notarizations a Florida Notary must: a) hold a current Notary commission (b) certify that he or she has completed a classroom or online course covering the duties, obligations and technology requirements for serving as an online Notary; (c) pay the registration fee; (d) submit a signed and sworn registration as an online Notary to the Department of State; (e) Identify the RON service provider for audio-video communication technology, identity proofing and credential analysis the applicant intends to use and confirming that these technologies satisfy the requirements of the new law and rules adopted by the Department of State; and (f) provide evidence satisfactory to the Department of State that the applicant obtained a $25,000 bond as an online Notary and a minimum $25,000 errors and omissions policy on such terms as are specified by the Department of State by rule. For additional information on the new law, please see here: https://www.nationalnotary.org/knowledge-center/news/law-updates/fl-house-bill-409

Ralph G Edwards

14 Nov 2019

Why do Governments always make things difficult? is it necessary to introduce this, RON? Isn't there Notaries in every state, cities, counties, neighborhoods? In homes, offices? Why create more opportunities for the scammers?

Cathy

14 Nov 2019

I agree. More ways to go after a notary. I'm sure I will sign up for it to keep my business going forward, although there is alot of room to take advantage of notaries, which in turn we can lose our license/way of income. Alot of scammers out there ready to take advantage. Wonder what the punishment for the notary is if something goes wrong.

Francelot saintil

16 Nov 2019

Why everything changed

Francelot

16 Nov 2019

Tell me why everything difficult now.

pobox.zoock@gmail.com

22 Nov 2019

Article says... "NNA Members may download the new certificates for free as a member benefit by logging in to their accounts on the NNA website." Where do I go after I log into my account ??? New to the site. Thanks...

National Notary Association

22 Nov 2019

Hello. After you log in to your account, click on "Notary Certificate Forms" under "Member Quick Links" on the right-hand side of the page. When the Certificate Forms page appears, select "Florida" from the drop-down menu of states. You should then be able to download the appropriate certificates of your choice.

Sheryl Caldwell

31 Dec 2019

IMO, We should use these in all states...as NSA's our certificates cross all states! Will it violate any laws if I use this certificate in my packages or GNW...I'm in Texas?

National Notary Association

02 Jan 2020

Based on what you’ve described, we think it would be best if you contacted our Hotline team by phone and provided them with a more detailed description of the situation. The NNA Hotline: 1-888-876-0827 Mon – Fri: 5:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. (PT) Saturday: 5:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (PT) If you’re not an NNA Member or Hotline Subscriber, they will provide you with a one-time courtesy call.

Connie Castorino

04 Jan 2020

For new Florida requirement Can I use my old stamp and write in the new information or do I need to order a completely new stamp?

National Notary Association

08 Jan 2020

Hello. To ensure compliance with the new law, we recommend Florida Notaries use printed certificates with the new required information included rather than attempting to handwrite the information in yourself.

Cmoore

07 Jan 2020

What if you do not have the new certificate? Can you hand write the verbiage ‘ by means of physical presence ‘ ?

National Notary Association

08 Jan 2020

Hello. To ensure compliance with the new law, we recommend using printed certificates with the new required information rather than attempting to handwrite the information in yourself.

sherijo@gmail.com

07 Jan 2020

As of 1/7/2020 the Florida Secretary of State has not updated their sample notary forms with the new language. It doesn't appear that NNA has updated their Florida free form downloads either (for members).

National Notary Association

07 Jan 2020

Hello. The updated Florida certificate wording is available to NNA members by logging into the "My NNA" section of our site here and selecting "Florida" from the drop-down menu: https://www.nationalnotary.org/my-nna/member-benefits/downloadable-notary-certificate-forms

Helen Lutke

07 Jan 2020

Are State of Florida notaries "required" to be Remote Online Notary Public, or can we maintain our in person notarizations?

National Notary Association

07 Jan 2020

Hello. Applying to perform remote online notarizations is optional. Florida Notaries may continue to perform traditional notarizations only if they wish to.

Bonnie J Poynter

07 Jan 2020

So if you are never going to do remote closings, do you need all of this? I only ever notarize in my office in front of the customer.

National Notary Association

07 Jan 2020

Hello. Yes, all Florida Notaries are required to use the new certificate wording. If you do not perform remote notarizations, you would check the new "physical appearance" box to indicate the signer was physically present before you for the notarization.

Beverly Jennings

07 Jan 2020

On the new form "Florida Short Form Individual Acknowledgement" who is suppose to sign in the "Optional Box" that states "Signer(s) Other Than Named Above". Is it just a witness who is at the signing of the document other than myself?

National Notary Association

08 Jan 2020

Hello. The "Optional Box" section on NNA certificates is simply provided to include additional information not required by law in the Notary certificate. The section you are referring to gives Notaries the option to note if there are additional signatures on the document in addition to the person whose signature is being notarized.

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