Worldwide ERC® Supports Introduction of the SECURE Notarization Act

The SECURE Notarization Act, supported by Worldwide ERC® and other stakeholders, is bipartisan legislation that would ease business transactions in the remote setting.

On 17 May, Senators Kevin Cramer (R-ND) and Mark Warner (D-VA) introduced the Securing and Enabling Commerce Using Remote and Electronic Notarization Act (SECURE Notarization Act, S. 1625), bipartisan legislation to permit immediate nationwide use of Remote Online Notarizations (RON), a type of electronic notarization where the notary and signer are in different physical locations.  The bill, if enacted, would afford businesses and consumers the ability to execute critical documents using two-way audiovisual communication. Worldwide ERC® signed onto a coalition letter supporting the introduction of the legislation.

Due to social distancing constraints from COVID-19 restrictions, the current requirements for a signer to be physically in the presence of a Notary results in significant barriers to business and real estate transactions as well as for military service and work travel.

Thirty-four states have already passed legislation authorizing the use of RON. The SECURE Notarization Act would permit immediate nationwide use of RON, authorizing every notary in the United States to perform RON. It would require the use of tamper-evident technology in electronic notarizations and help prevent fraud through the use of multifactor authentication. It would allow signers outside the U.S., such as military personnel and their families, to notarize documents easily and securely.

“The pandemic exposed several flaws and outdated methods used in the American economy, and the notary process is a prime example,” said Senator Cramer in his press release. “Our bill would bring this process into the 21st century, allowing people to securely complete notarized documents remotely, just as they do with many other important forms.”

Senator Warner followed by saying, “Remote online notarization is a transformative technology that offers consumers a convenient way to safely and securely complete important documents. While the COVID-19 pandemic presented a number of obstacles to essential tasks such as executing wills, completing financial documents, buying or selling a home, or purchasing or selling a car online, many states demonstrated how to effectively deploy this type of technology to meet the needs of Americans.”

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How This Impacts Mobility

As the U.S. continues to work towards economic recovery and a return to workforce mobility, it is imperative that the federal government adopt modern tools that streamline critical business transactions. In particular, remote online notarization (RON) will continue to significantly impact the real estate industry, a sector that is crucial to workforce mobility and employee relocation. Worldwide ERC® supports this bipartisan legislation as we advocate for public policies that are agile, attentive to the needs of the workforce, and support work anywhere. Should any member have questions, please reach out to our Vice President of Member Engagement and Public Policy Rebecca Peters, rpeters@worldwideerc.org.

Join Us for the Virtual Spring Conference!

For more public policy information for the world of workforce mobility, join us at our virtual Spring Conference on 25 May, where our public policy update “Preparing for Where Work is Going” will feature senior policymakers from the Department of Homeland Security and Capitol Hill. Register now and join us!