On April 27, Governor Baker passed the S2645 Bill codified as the Chapter 71 of the Acts of 2020. The law permits notarizations to be completed remotely. This will have an important impact on real estate transactions in the Boston area and throughout Massachusetts. To complete notarizations electronically the following criteria must be adhered to:
- All parties and the notary must be located in Massachusetts.
- All principal parties must provide proof of identity either during the video conference or by sending a copy of identification materials to the notary.
- The notary must observe execution of the document by all parties through real time electronic video conferencing.
- All executed documents must be sent to the notary for their stamp and signature following the video conference. Mortgage closings require a second video conference to confirm that the documents received by the notary are the same ones that were executed.
This important bill takes notice of the fact that real estate transactions are still taking place. Families are buying and selling homes, there are also elderly with health conditions who may need to downsize, or employment conditions which precipitate a need to buy or sell. The law will allow the attorneys licensed in the state of Massachusetts, a duly appointed notary, or a paralegal notary directly supervised by an attorney the option to perform these duties remotely during the current state of emergency.
The bill balances protection from the COVID-19 pandemic with maintaining the rigorous procedural safeguards essential to Massachusetts real estate transactions. We are proud to play a role in keeping our customers safe by providing socially appropriate ways to conduct business during this state of emergency.
For more information about this new bill or if you need assistance finding a new home or with any of your real estate needs in Boston or Winthrop please contact By the Sea Real Estate and Property Management, LLC, (617) 539-1010
or email edamaral@BytheSeaRealEstateWinthrop.Com.
Edward L. Amaral, Jr. Esq.