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As full precautions are being taken across all industries to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, Pennsylvania Governor, Tom Wolf, has recently signed a temporary waiver allowing for remote online notarization to keep businesses operating. Currently there are only 23 states that have enacted some form of RON legislature, and as such, each state has slight differences in execution based on each state’s requirements. Rather than needing an in-person interaction to obtain notarization, the remote online notarization process, also known as “RON,” features two-way, audio-visual conferencing where this can be handled from the safety of one’s home.
The “RON” process is simple. The signing party undergoes a proof of identity process prior to attaching any electronic signature. Proof of identity processes are different for each state but often require the presentation of a valid state issued ID. Once identity confirmation has been received, the signing party electronically signs the document with the notary witnessing the document by attaching a digital seal. This whole exchange occurs while in the audio-visual conference.
On March 26, the Pennsylvania Secretary of State also announced the suspension of the in-person requirement for PA Revised Uniform Law on Notarial Acts (RULONA) to enable new and in process commercial real estate closings to be closed using audio-visual technology. The suspension of the in-person requirement for RULONA and the temporary RON process allows for real estate transactions to continue as we deal with remote working during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis.
-Dodie Williams, Director with Watchdog Real Estate Project Management