September 26, 2020

Volume X, Number 270

September 25, 2020

Subscribe to Latest Legal News and Analysis

September 24, 2020

Subscribe to Latest Legal News and Analysis

September 23, 2020

Subscribe to Latest Legal News and Analysis

Mississippi Secretary of State Issues New Remote Notarization Order Guidance

The Mississippi Secretary of State’s office has now issued its new Remote Notarization Order Guidance following Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves’ Executive Order 1467, which modified the in-person requirement for notarization temporarily.

According to the new Remote Notarization Order Guidance, effective immediately, and continuing throughout the period of the State of Emergency Proclamation as declared by Governor Reeves on March 17, 2020, Mississippi notaries public are authorized to perform notarial acts by remote notarization and remote online notarization.

The new Remote Notarization Order Guidance provides the following requirements for remote notarization and remote online notarization:

  •  You must be a currently commissioned notary in Mississippi, in good standing.

  •  You must notify the Secretary of State, Business Services Division of your intent to use remote notarization technology on the form located here.

  •  Using the Secretary of State’s form, you must identify the communications technology vendor you will use and confirm that the vendor allows you to, (1) view and hear the remotely-located principal in real-time; (2) verify the principal’s identity through one or more of the methods set forth in the Order; and (3) record the entire notary transaction.

  •  For each notarial act conducted remotely, you must create and retain an audio-video recording of the entire notarial act. You must keep this electronic record just as you would your notary journal or log book.

  •  For each notarial act conducted remotely, you must note in your notary journal or logbook details about the notarial act, including that the notarial act was conducted for a remotely-located principal using communications technology.

  •  You may charge your normal $5 fee, plus the cost of using the communications technology, not to exceed $25.

The new Remote Notarization Order Guidance also provides that notaries should note the following before beginning the performance of remote notarizations:

  • The Governor’s Executive Order is only a temporary waiver of the in-person requirement of the Mississippi Notary Statute and Rules. This is a significant change to notary practices in Mississippi.

  • The Governor’s order requires you to use a communications technology vendor designed for the purpose of facilitating remote notarizations, as opposed to services that primarily offer video-conferencing ability. Such purpose-designed services include the ability to both see and hear a remotely located individual. It is your responsibility to choose the vendor.

  • For additional guidance on available technology, you may wish to review the information made available by the National Notary Association www.nationalnotary.org or other professional membership associations.

  • In advance of utilizing remote notarization, you must give notice to the Secretary of State by emailing the Remote Notary Notification to remotenotary@sos.ms.gov.

  • As a commissioned notary, it is your legal responsibility to perform notarizations correctly pursuant to the Mississippi notary statute and Rules. The statute, Rules, and Governor’s order are available on the Mississippi Secretary of State website at https://www.sos.ms.gov/BusinessServices/Pages/Notaries-Apostilles.aspx.

  • You may email any questions about this new process to remotenotary@sos.ms.gov .

The new Remote Notarization Order Guidance also provides additional Remote Notary FAQS for notaries interested in utilizing this new temporary remote notarization option.

© 2020 Jones Walker LLPNational Law Review, Volume X, Number 100

TRENDING LEGAL ANALYSIS


About this Author

John Fletcher Tax Lawyer Jones Walker Law Firm
Partner

John Fletcher is a partner in the firm's Tax & Estates Practice Group and practices from the Jackson, Mississippi office. With more than twenty years' experience in the legal, corporate, and accounting arenas, his practice focuses primarily on state tax matters, encompassing Mississippi, Louisiana and multi-state income, franchise, sales, use and local ad valorem taxes.

He is a contributor for Cooking with SALT, a legal blog committed to providing timely insights on recent legal and practical developments concerning clients...

601-949-4620
Matthew Mantle, State, Local Tax, Louisiana, Jones Walker Law FIrm
Partner

Matthew Mantle is a partner in the firm’s Tax & Estates Practice Group and practices with the State & Local Tax Team out of the firm's New Orleans office.

Matt concentrates primarily on state and local tax matters in Louisiana, Alabama, and on a multistate basis, representing firm clients throughout the Gulf South in all areas of state and local tax. His practice includes tax and business planning, audits, administrative appeals, judicial appeals, identification and utilization of tax incentives, governmental relations, and tax legislation. He has also represented firm clients on various unclaimed property matters. Matt was recently recognized in "Chambers USA–America's Leading Lawyers for Business" in the area of Corporate/M&A: Tax.

504.582.8418