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Electronic notarization (e-notarization) is the act of notarizing an electronic document such as a PDF or Microsoft Word document. To complete this type of notarization, the notary adds an electronic signature and seal to the electronic document.
A notary public who is commissioned to perform electronic notarizations is known as an eNotary.
E-notarizations use a code-based method called cryptography to protect information and communications. This ensures that only the intended recipient can read and process the document. The eNotary must also keep an electronic register of each notarial act that they perform.
In most situations, eNotaries cannot notarize documents remotely. Most states require all parties to be present during the notarization.
Several states have enacted e-notarization statutes or have developed administrative rules or structured programs that allow for electronic notarizations.
These states include: