Michael Watson

Secretary of State Michael Watson

Mississippians who need documents to be notarized may temporarily have them done remotely, thanks to an executive order signed by Gov. Tate Reeves Tuesday.

Under Executive Order 1467, the state has waived the in-person requirement for notarizing documents for the duration of the current shelter-in-place order in Mississippi. The order authorizes remote notarizations under guidance from the Secretary of State's office.

Anytime our office can assist individuals and businesses alike to make life a little easier, especially in times like these, we jump at the chance,” said Michael Watson, the current secretary of state. “This waiver allows Mississippians to conduct business and tend to vital transactions while still following COVID-19 health guidelines. Incredibly thankful for Jeff Lee, Preston Goff, and Leigh Janous from our office, as well as everyone in the business community for their input in getting this finalized.”

Executive order 1467 sets the following requirements for remote notarization and remote online notarization:

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

  • Notice must be given to the Secretary of State's Office before using remote notarization by emailing the Remote Notary Notification form to remotenotary@sos.ms.gov.

  •  Using the Remove Notary Notification 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 standard $5 fee, plus the cost of using the communications technology, not to exceed $25. 

The statute, rules, and description of the executive order are available on the secretary of state's website, www.sos.ms.gov. Questions may be emailed to remotenotary@sos.ms.gov.

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