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RULE §87.41Online Notarization Procedures

(a) An online notarization may only be performed by a notary who is commissioned as an online notary public.

(b) An online notary public shall not perform an online notarization if the online notary public is not physically in Texas at the time of the notarization.

(c) An online notary public shall not perform an online notarization if the principal does not personally appear before the notary public at the time of notarization in accordance with §87.1 of this title (relating to Definitions).

(d) The methods by which an online notary public identifies a principal are as follows:

  (1) Online notary public personally knows the principal; or

  (2) Principal is introduced by oath of credible witness who personally knows the principal and either is personally known to the online notary public or provides qualifying identification in accordance with paragraph (3) of this subsection; or

  (3) Principal or credible witness is identified using the identity proofing and credential analysis standards in accordance with subchapter H of this chapter.

(e) For all notarial acts that require a notarial certificate, the online notary public shall attach an electronic notarial certificate that identifies the principal, the date of the notarization, the state and county in which the notarization was performed, that the notarial act was an online notarization, and language evidencing the type of the notarial act performed. The notarial certificate shall be signed by affixing the online notary public's digital certificate and include an attachment of the online notary public's electronic seal.

(f) The liability, sanctions, and remedies for the improper performance of online notarial acts are the same as described and provided by law for the improper performance of traditional notarial acts.

(g) An online notary public shall keep a record of all notarial acts in accordance with §406.108, Government Code, and Chapter 87 of this title. The record shall include a recording of the audio-visual conference that is the basis for satisfactory evidence of identity and a notation of the type of identification presented as evidence by the principal, if the principal is not personally known to the online notary public. The recording shall include, at minimum:

  (1) confirmation by the notary public that the principal has successfully completed identity proofing and credential analysis;

  (2) visual confirmation of the identity of the principal through visual inspection of the credential used during credential analysis; and

  (3) the actual notarial act performed.

(h) If the principal is personally known to the online notary public, the audio-visual conference shall include a statement to that effect and a recording of the actual notarial act performed.

(i) The online notary public shall not disclose any access information used to affix the notary's digital certificate and seal except when requested by the secretary of state, law enforcement, the courts, and with reasonable precautions, electronic document preparation and transmission vendors.

(j) Online notaries public shall attach their digital certificate and seal to the electronic notarial certificate of an electronic document in a manner that is capable of independent verification and renders any subsequent change or modification to the electronic document evident.

Source Note: The provisions of this §87.41 adopted to be effective August 19, 2018, 43 TexReg 5355

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