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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: December 13, 2018 09:50 AM
From: Senator Mike Folmer
To: All Senate members
Subject: Reintroduction of Remote Notarization of Documents
I plan to reintroduce my Senate Bill 595, which unanimously passed the full Senate last Session to authorize the remote notarization of documents. Previous cosponsors were: Martin, Greenleaf, Rafferty, Browne, Brewster, and Dinniman.

This proposal represents a significant modernization of the Notary Law by allowing user-friendly and secure methods for the electronic notarization of documents. Notaries would be given additional tools to perform their duties for remotely located individuals – including those who may be outside the United States. This would be done by authenticating documents and identifying individual parties through communication technology and identity proofing to certify copies of electronic records are true copies.

My bill establishes definitions for “communication technology”, “foreign state”, “identity proofing”,” outside the United States”, and “remotely located individual”. The Pennsylvania Department of State would be required to issue regulations for these new definitions and for retention periods for recordings.

This proposal does not replace notaries nor does it change in any way the types of services notaries provide. Rather, it would authorize the use of secure and reliable technology to assist notaries in the performance of their duties while at the same time providing a business and government-friendly alternative to being physically present. Similar legislation has been passed and widely utilized in Virginia and is currently pending consideration in a number of other states.

I hope you will join me in cosponsoring this important and innovative initiative.