Remote and Virtual Notarizations Authorized in Alabama

Remote and Virtual Notarizations Authorized in Alabama

On April 2, Governor Kay Ivey updated her Emergency order with a supplemental Proclamation that broadened the ability for remote and virtual notarization of documents to occur without the involvement or direct supervision of attorneys. This new definition includes all Alabama notaries which will allow more title companies and others to help facilitate closings and refinancing’s through virtual means.

Here are the details on Gov. Ivey’s emergency supplemental proclamation.

Q: What does remote notarization mean?
A: Remote notarization means that a notary can notarize signatures and confirm signatures of witnesses through videoconferencing programs.

Q: Who can remotely notarize documents?
A: All Alabama notaries may notarize signatures via videoconferencing.

Q: Can witnesses participate virtually?
A: Yes. The notary can confirm the signatures of witnesses who are participating in the video conference. The notary must confirm the presence and identity of the witnesses at the time of signing as required by current law.

Q: Who can serve as a witness?
A: Anyone who participates on the call can witness a signature and will be considered an “in person” witness.

Q: How do I set up a remote notarization?
A: Contact the notary you typically use or, if you do not know a notary, call a local bank or attorney’s office.

Q: What is the process for remote notarization?
A: The notary will establish the process for remote notarization.

Q: What happens to the documents after the video conference?
A: All documents should be returned to the notary for certification and execution.

Q: Will the video conference be recorded?
A: Yes. The notary is required to maintain a recording of the video and audio for five years.

Q: What about remote notarizations done before April 3?
A: Remote notarizations done pursuant to Gov. Ivey’s earlier emergency proclamation on March 26 are still valid.