Apr 2020

Update on Remote Notarization (RON & RIN) from the PLTA

By admin

SB841 of the 2019-2020 Session was signed today by Governor Wolf.  Among other things, it temporarily permits PA notarial officers to conduct Remote Online Notarization (“RON”).  A summary of the Bill can be found in our April 17th, 2020 Legislative Update.  The Department of State has published a summary here.  Please contact your underwriter with any questions regarding the use of RON in conjunction with title insurance.

RON can be a useful tool in these times of social distancing, but unfortunately, vendors are having a hard time keeping up with demand, and it can take weeks to onboard new customers.  Also, not all lenders are willing to accept RON, and not all consumers have access to or trust in the technology.

As such, PLTA has sent this letter urging the temporary allowance of Remote Ink Notarization (RIN) in Pennsylvania to Governor Wolf’s office.

RIN is a process by which parties to a real estate transaction can close remotely using secure audio-visual technology, but the documents are tangible and signed with wet ink, just like in an in person closing. The signer signs before the notary over webcam, mails or emails the documents back to the notary, who then notarizes the documents with wet ink. Then the documents are submitted for recording.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac both issued guidelines for this type of closing, and other states are temporarily authorizing this procedure. A recent executive order from Delaware can be viewed here.

Fraud prevention safeguards (such as additional identity credentials, randomly generated numbers shared from an independent application, third party identity verification services, and use of professional video conferencing services that contain additional precautions) can be required and used in RIN transactions.

Contact the Governor and your legislators to show your support for temporary RIN in Pennsylvania.

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