Virginia has a new law that allows online cameras to suffice for communication and appearance for online notarizations. Good god! Other states that allow for e-notarizations do not allow this practice, and for good reason.
There was a company in Orange County, California that was engaging in this practice, and they got nothing but complaints, and the Secretary of State was after them as well. So, what have the Virginia legislators been smoking? Are they even thinking?
The purpose of a notary is to deter or prevent fraud. Allowing online notarization without personal appearance can encourage fraud. Hopefully they will not allow this type of notarization for critical documents such as powers of attorney and deeds. I’ll assume they won’t. But even for regular business documents, it is serious, and important to have personal appearance.
My only question is, how many lawsuits will occur as a result of this new questionable and unpopular law?
I think that in reality, few notaries are e-notaries, and if they are, that few will engage in this practice. But, time will tell. We will see what Virginia notaries do, and how much trouble they get themselves into.
In the meantime, I’ll stick to notarizing cats — providing they raise their right paw and swear under oath that meao is meao, and meao meao meao!