Remote Electronic Notarization is Here to Stay

On July 8th, Governor Cooper signed House Bill 776 into law, authorizing Remote Electronic Notarization (aka Remote Online Notarization or “RON”) once again in North Carolina. 

In 2020, temporary legislation was enacted to allow for Emergency Video Notarization after the COVID-19 pandemic necessitated social distancing.  However, that legislation expired last year. 

With the signing of House Bill 776 into law, the ability to use Emergency Video Notarization is restored until 6/30/2023. The Emergency Video Notarization law allows a regular notary to perform acknowledgments and oaths/affirmations for a person located in North Carolina using live/real-time video conference technology to verify the person’s identity. 

In July 2023, a new Remote Electronic Notarization program will be implemented. The new statute defines Remote Electronic Notarization in North Carolina moving forward, creating a new category of notary, the remote electronic notary.  These notaries can perform notarial acts without the requirement to be in the physical presence of the signer.  They are required to use remote communication technology platforms that are secure, capable of recording and geolocation, and licensed by the NC Secretary of State. The Secretary of State has been tasked with creating rules to implement the program and technology platform for an effective date of July 1, 2023.

The restoration of Emergency Video Notarization and the new Remote Electronic Notarization program may affect the way some law offices handle closings.  Please check with your closing attorney if you have any questions about how this law might change the real estate closing process.