Vermont Remote Notarization Rules

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 On March 24, 2020, the Vermont Secretary of State issued emergency administrative rules permitting signers and notaries to satisfy the personal appearance requirement for the notarization of documents through video conference technology.  The video conference technology must:

  1. Allow for live interaction between the signer(s) and the notary public;
  2. Be of such quality that clear visual observation of the face of each participant and clear visual observation of the identification being provided; and
  3. Have an audio-visual recording function such that the notary public can record the meeting between the Remotely Located Individual and the notary public.  It appears that Skype and some other video conference technology has a recording function.

In order to perform a notarization in this manner, the other requirements are as follows:

  1. The signer must be in Vermont.
  2. The Notary must verify the signer’s identity either through personal knowledge, a credible witness or 2 different types if identification presented by the signer.

a. The two forms of identification must include:

      1. At least one of the following that is current or expired within the past three (3) years:
        • a passport;
        • a driver's license;
        • a government-issued non-driver identification card; or
        • another form of government identification issued to an individual, which contains the signature or a photograph of the individual, and is satisfactory to the notary public.
      2. If a second form of identification that meets the requirements set forth in subsection (a) is not available, a second form of identification credential that assures the notary public of the identity of the Remotely Located Individual. By way of example, this could include tax forms, utility bills, library card, picture badges, corporate identification, credit cards or vital records.
      3. The notarization must be “performed on a tangible (paper) record” either sent to the Notary in its original paper form or transmitted electronically and printed out by the Notary.
      4. The notarial certificate must be hand-written, imprinted by a stamp or embosser, or both on the document.
      5. The Notary — or a person acting on their behalf — a must create an audio-visual recording of the notarization and retain it for at least 7 years.