Covid-19, E-Notaries and What It Means for your Real Estate Closing

During the Covid-19 pandemic remote notaries can be an efficient tool to maintain the real estate market while honoring the various Orders for social distancing. Remote notarization became legal in Florida on January 1, 2020 meaning the buyer and seller do not have to be in the same room. 

Remote notaries work by affixing signatures and notary seals to an electronic document such as a PDF or Word document. This makes the document securely transmittable. The remote notaries are also authorized to provide their service via the internet using tools such as video conferencing, where physical presence is required by law. 

However, the details to using a remote notary should be all worked out prior to the closing date, since not all notaries can conduct remote notarization. Florida law requires a notary to be registered as an online notary prior to performing remote closings, post a $25,000 bond, they must also have $25,000 of errors and omissions (E&O) insurance and complete a two hour course.  Furthermore, all parties must be in agreement to use the remote notary including the Lender. Lenders can refuse to accept a remote notary forcing the buyer and seller to still be present for closing. 

An experienced real estate attorney is an asset to completing the real estate closing transaction. Using an attorney means being sure of what is and what is not allowed under Florida law especially during these trying times. 

If you an questions or concerns regarding your real estate closing and remote notarizations feel free to contact us at 305-227-4030 or legal@raygarcialaw.com