New York Permits “Virtual” Notarization in Light of COVID-19 Pandemic

On March 19, 2020, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo issued Executive Order No. 202.7 (“Continuing Temporary Suspension and Modification of Laws Relating to the Disaster Emergency”), which, inter alia, permits documents to be notarized utilizing audio-video technology through April 18, 2020.

The Order provides, in pertinent part:

Any notarial act that is required under New York State law is authorized to be performed utilizing audio-video technology provided that the following conditions are met:

  • The person seeking the Notary’s services, if not personally known to the Notary, must present valid photo ID to the Notary during the video conference, not merely transmit it prior to or after;
  • The video conference must allow for direct interaction between the person and the Notary (e.g. no pre-recorded videos of the person signing);
  • The person must affirmatively represent that he or she is physically situated in the State of New York;
  • The person must transmit 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 thirty days after the date of execution.

The New York Academy of Trial Lawyers has distilled these requirements into a 6-step process here.

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