On March 19, New York Governor Mario Cuomo issued Executive Order No. 202.7, “Continuing Temporary Suspension and Modification of Laws Relating to the Disaster Emergency” (the “Order”).
Notably, effective through April 18, 2020, the Order authorizes the performance of notarial acts through the use of audio-video technology.
Specifically, the Order provides that any notarial act required by New York State law may performed utilizing audio-video technology provided:
- If the person seeking notary services is not known to the notary, the person presents a valid photo ID to the notary during the video conference (not merely before or after);
- The video conference allows for direct interaction between the person and the notary (e.g., no prerecorded videos of the person signing);
- The person affirmatively represents that he or she is physically situated in the state of New York;
- The person transmits by fax or electronic means a legible copy of the signed document directly to the notary on the same date it was signed;
- The notary may notarize the transmitted copy of the document and transmit the same back to the person; and
- The notary may 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 30 days after the day of execution.
While the Order is limited to notarizing documents for individuals physically located in New York, it is still welcome news. Hopefully other states that do not currently have remote online notarization laws in effect will begin to allow remote notarizations during the crisis.