House Passes SECURE Notarization Act

Tristan North - Feb 28 2023
Published in: Public Policy
| Updated Apr 27 2023
The bill now moves to the Senate, where it faces a more difficult path to passage.

On the evening of 27 February, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the SECURE Notarization Act (H.R. 1059) to establish a minimum set of standards for the use of electronic and remote notarization and require their recognition across state lines. The House passed H.R. 1059 by voice vote. The bill now moves to the Senate, where it faces a more difficult path to passage.

The SECURE Act Coalition, of which Worldwide ERC® is a member, has been advocating for passage of the Securing and Enabling Commerce Using Remote and Electronic (SECURE) Notarization Act for the last couple of years. The SECURE Notarization Act would allow notary publics to remotely notarize electronic records and for documents to be signed remotely as well as require states and the courts to recognize e-notarizations conducted in other states. The use of e-notarization, especially as part of real estate transactions, has been accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic as a result of social distancing requirements.

“Passage of the SECURE Notarization Act by the House is a critical step toward resolving the challenges faced by mobility professionals having to navigate state-by-state e-notarization requirements,” said Worldwide ERC President and CEO Lynn Shotwell in a statement. “I encourage the Senate to swiftly consider and approve the Act and provide much-needed clarity in this area to the workforce mobility industry.”

Efforts were made by the SECURE Act Coalition to move the bill in the Senate last year but faced pushback from the two senators from California following a letter to them by the California Attorney General expressing concern about the impact of the bill on California. Worldwide ERC and the SECURE Act Coalition will continue to work with senators to discuss their concerns as well as look for opportunities to move the bill as objections are addressed.

Tristan North is the government affairs advisor at Worldwide ERC.