New York Governor Andrew Cuomo Signs Executive Order Allowing Virtual Notarial Acts Through April 18, 2020

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In the latest in the string of Executive Orders signed under Section 29-a of Article 2-B of the Executive Law which allows the Governor to "issue directives during a disaster emergency necessary to cope with the disaster," on March 19, 2020, Governor Cuomo signed Executive Order 202.7 which expands the ability of a New York Notary Public to perform their duties virtually during the State disaster emergency declared in response to the Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic.

The Order allows for the following: "Any notarial act that is required under New York State law is authorized to be performed utilizing audio-video technology provided that the following conditions are met:

  • The person seeking the Notary's services, if not personally known to the Notary, must present a valid photo ID to the Notary during the video conference, not merely transmit it prior to or after;
  • The video conference must allow for direct interaction between the person and the Notary (e.g. no pre-recorded videos of the person signing);
  • The person must affirmatively represent that he or she is physically situated in the State of New York;
  • The person must transmit by fax or electronic means a legible copy of the signed document directly to the Notary on the same date it was signed;
  • The Notary may notarize the transmitted copy of the document and transmit the same back to the person; and
  • The Notary may repeat the notarization of the original signed document as of the date of execution provided the Notary receives such original signed document together with the electronically notarized copy within thirty days after the date of execution."

These expanded powers are valid immediately and will remain in force until April 18, 2020.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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