Skoufis, Rozic Pass Legislation to Allow Remote Online Notarization in New York

Legislation Will Give New Yorkers the Option to Notarize Documents Remotely with Safety and Fraud Prevention Mechanisms Built in to the Law

With State of Emergency Lifted, Electronic Notarization Must be Expanded to Benefit Business Reopening

Albany, NY — State Senator James Skoufis (D-Hudson Valley) and Assemblywoman Nily Rozic (D-Fresh Meadows) announced that legislation they sponsor has passed the State Legislature with broad bipartisan support. The legislation would allow for remote electronic notarization with the use of video conference technology. The bill now awaits the Governor’s approval.

Limited remote notarization was authorized by executive order for the duration of the COVID-19 state of emergency. The legislation will ensure that safe and secure remote electronic notarization can continue even as the state of emergency is lifted.

“Despite the increasing number of notarizations that occur annually, the industry has not adapted to societal changes and technological advances. Notarization still requires people to be physically present in front of a notary public, despite technology that would allow for the same — or increased — security over video conference calls,” said Assemblywoman Nily Rozic. “This long overdue legislation will allow homebound New Yorkers to access notarial services and would allow working people to have their documents notarized without losing wages for lost working hours spent at an in-person notary public.”

“The Partnership applauds Assemblymember Rozic and Senator Skoufis for bringing Remote Online Notarizations to New York,” said Kathryn Wylde, President & CEO of the Partnership for New York City. “The business community and consumers have been demanding electronic processes for various transactions for years. This new law will streamline complex legal procedures for New Yorkers and reinforce our status as a global business hub.”

William J. Mellin, President and CEO of the New York Credit Union Association said: “Over the last year, credit unions across the state have looked for creative ways to help members manage their financial affairs. With passage of this bill, New Yorkers will be able to more safely and conveniently conduct a broad range of consumer transactions. Remote Notarization has the potential to be particularly beneficial to the elderly and disabled as well as individuals who live in banking deserts for whom getting back and forth to a branch to get a document notarized can be challenging. We thank Assemblywoman Rozic and Senator Skoufis for their leadership in championing this important legislation.”

Renee Hunter, General Counsel at Notarize said: “We thank Assemblywoman Rozic and her colleagues for their hard work to advance A399B/S1708C in the New York State Legislature to expand access to remote online notarization. We look forward to working with the New York State Legislature and Department of State in the regulatory process to ensure that appropriate consumer protections are set forth, including requiring strong multi-factor authentication of signers prior to the performance of any remote notarial act.”

This legislation comes after a years-long effort and would allow New York to follow over 30 other states that have already authorized remote notarization.