During the process of buying and selling real estate, several documents among the execution of the deed and the mortgage must be notarized;  we are happy to share that Florida passed a new bill that allows remote online notarization (RON) for real estate transactions. The House Bill 409 went into effect on January 1, 2020. Florida has joined twenty other states, becoming the 11th new state to adopt RON legislation in 2019, and 21st overall.

Remote online notarization offers real estate professionals the benefit to close transactions in which one of the parties is out of town, giving them the opportunity to provide a suitable closing experience. The House Bill 409 also allows remote notaries to execute fully electronic Wills.

What is RON?

It is a process whereby a signer and a notary public use audio and video communication to notarize the signer’s electronic signature on electronic documents. In states where RON is permitted, personal appearance requirements are met by this interactive audio-video conference.  Among other elements, the new law states: “…Whether the signer personally appeared before the notary public at the time of the notarization by physical presence or by means of audio-video communication technology as authorized under part II of this chapter…”

What are the RON requirements?

  • The transaction must comply with all the Florida state notarial law requirements where the property is located.
  • The seller, the buyer/borrower, and the lender must give written consent to the transaction.
  • Consent must be obtained prior to execution of documents electronically.
  • Underwriters require that RON service providers follow specific procedures to proof identity, and provide a clear quality audio-video recording of the notarial act only, provide a post-execution document record, and have in place a comprehensive vendor security program to ensure data security, such as SSAE 16, SOC2, or ISO27001.  There are multiple technology requirements for notarizing an instrument via remote connection.
  • If the transaction involves the execution of a power of attorney by a remote online notarization or the use of a power of attorney for execution of documents, additional approval is required.

To qualify as a remote notary, a notary must complete a two-hour training course, post a $25,000 bond, and obtain $25,000 of errors and omissions insurance coverage.

More and more we rely on technology to perform important processes in our lives, now anyone can buy or sell real estate, signing and notarizing documents entirely online.  As far as the title companies, we are happy to announce that now we can close online in two simple steps.

May you have any questions related to this matter, or you are looking to close on a real estate transaction, and need the services of a title company,  or a real estate attorney, please reach out to us today. We are happy to offer you our guidance. We, at Title Partners of Florida, write and support the real estate transaction closing, including the issuance of title insurance policies through Attorneys’ Title Insurance Fund. We also coordinate searches, title products, and a variety of other services for our clients. Contact us with any questions about our real estate closing services by phone (844) 321-6168 or by email titleinfo@titlepartnersfl.com.

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