ALTA-supported RON Bill Reintroduced in Senate
April 20, 2023
U.S. Senators Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) and Mark Warner (D-Va.) reintroduced the Securing and Enabling Commerce Using Remote and Electronic (SECURE) Notarization Act.
The bipartisan bill, SB1212, would enable use of RON technology by notaries public in interstate commerce and allow signers located outside of the U.S.—such as active-duty military personnel—as well as the elderly and homebuyers with disabilities to securely notarize documents.
“We applaud the longstanding leadership of Senators Cramer and Warner in recognizing the clear benefits of extending RON access to all Americans and introducing this bipartisan legislation, which offers a safe and secure path to remotely close real estate and mortgage transactions, among others. By passing the SECURE Notarization Act, we can take a much-needed step into the future by modernizing the notarization process with a secure system that has proven to meet consumer needs and expectations,” said Diane Tomb, CEO of ALTA. “The U.S. House of Representatives passed this needed legislation overwhelmingly in February and we urge the Senate to do the same. The SECURE Notarization Act allows businesses and consumers the ability to execute critical documents using two-way audiovisual communication. Current requirements for a signer to physically be in the presence of a notary are often impractical and sometimes impossible, such as for those serving overseas in the military or the elderly who can’t get to a physical closing.”
The SECURE Notarization Act would:
- Permit immediate nationwide use RON
- Create national minimum standards for its use
- Provide certainty for the interstate recognition of RON
Sens. Cramer and Warner led this legislation previously. The SECURE Act also would require the use of fraud prevention mechanisms like tamper-evident technologies and multi factor authentication. The U.S. House of Representatives passed SECURE on Feb. 27 by a voice vote. Currently, 43 states have enacted laws allowing permanent access to remote online notarization.
“In a digital world, we sign documents online and seamlessly send them around the country with the push of a few buttons. Yet, the notarization process remains stubbornly antiquated,” Sen. Cramer said. “Our bill will safely and securely bring notaries across the nation into the 21st century.”
Sen. Warner added, “When the COVID-19 pandemic ground our in-person economy to a halt, many states re-evaluated outdated processes in order to continue offering services remotely. Remote online notarizations proved to be a safe and convenient way for individuals to complete essential services such as executing wills, completing financial documents, and buying or selling a home online while maintaining minimum safety and security standards. This legislation would continue to modernize our notary system by permitting nationwide use of Remote Online Notarization to complete important documents.”
Other national stakeholders endorsing the bill include the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), National Association of Realtors (NAR) and American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI).
Contact ALTA at 202-296-3671 or email@example.com.