Are you based out of Florida, Pennsylvania, or California, and wanting to become an online notary? Read this post on the current legal status of remote online notarization and learn how to become an online notary in these states.

Remote online notarization is becoming the go to method of notarizing documents for the home closing process. While covid has definitely played the catalyst for RON’s fast adoption for a large number of states, a lot of them still have a long way to go when it comes to the full implementation of remote online notarization.

In this post, we will look into the current scenario of remote online notarization in 3 major states, Pennsylvania, Florida, and California.

We will learn about the implementation status of RON, applicable bills that enforce remote notarization, and how to apply become a remote online notary in the respective state. 

So without further ado, let’s dive into it.  

Remote Online Notarization in Pennsylvania

Status:

Pennsylvania state has passed a bill S.B. 841 that temporarily allows remote online notarization to be performed in the state. 

The bill requires all of the following for Pennsylvania notaries who wish to provide notarial services for individuals, not in their physical presence. 

If you are already a registered notary within the state of Pennsylvania, you can apply to become an online notary provided you fulfill the following requirements.  

Requirements:

Notification to the Department of State. The notary must notify the Department of State that the notary will be conducting remote notarizations and designate the communication and identity-proofing technology that the notary intends to use. 

Use of Approved Communication Technology 

  • Should enable a notary public located anywhere in PA to remotely communicate by sight and sound. Should also accommodate persons with vision, hearing, or speech impairments. 
  • Must Enable the notary public to identify the remotely located customer
    • On his or her personal knowledge 
    • The testimony of a credible witness
    • By using at least two identity-proofing technologies or services.
  • Use of tamper evident technology that allows electronic signatures to help establish the identity of the signor. 
  • The technology must create an audio-visual recording of the notarization, including all interactions between the notary public and the remotely located individual.

Now that we know about the requirements, let’s look into the steps on how to become an online notary in Pennsylvania.  

Steps to becoming an online notary in Pennsylvania

There are 6 steps to becoming an online notary in Pennsylvania. These are:

how-to-become-online-notary-in-PA

 

Remote Online Notarization in Florida

Florida is one of the 18 states that has fully implemented remote online notarization. If you wish to become a remote notary in Florida, there are clear rules laid out to help you become one within a short span of time.  

Status.

As mentioned, HB-409 that deals with Electronic Legal Documents makes remote notarization of documents legal in the state of Florida provided you fulfill the following requirements. 

Requirements:

  • Must hold an existing commission as a traditional notary, civil law notary, or commissioner of deeds. 
  • Traditional notaries should be 18 years old or more. 
  • They should be a resident of Florida state with no criminal record. 
  • A two hour RON training followed by the exam. 
  • Tools and Technologies including computer, webcam, microphone, and secure connection to the internet. Computers must be able to support two-way audio and visual communication.
  • Electronic seal, electronic journal, and a digital certificate containing your electronic signature.
  • A notary bond of $25,000.  

Steps to becoming an online notary in Florida

how-to-become-an-online-notary-in-florida

Remote Online Notarization in California

Status:

Right now remote online notarization is not approved in California state. The personal appearance of the document signer is required before the notary public. However, California citizens who wish to have their documents notarized can seek a mobile California notary public.

What is a mobile notary public?

Mobile Notary Public is a group of individuals who hold the notary license and are willing to travel to the signer's location to notarize documents.