The Florida legislature passed laws updating the state’s notary statutes. Both Fla. Stats. Ann. 695.25 and 117.05 were amended to allow for “online notarization”, as that term is defined in Fla. Stat. Ann. § 117.201(9). The changes modify the short form notary blocks to require the notary public to state whether the acknowledgements were taken physically or electronically through the addition of checkboxes and the language “by means of physical presence or online notarization”.
Docutech has concluded that the “acknowledged before me” language of the Florida previous notary text satisfies the requirement of Fla. Stat. Ann. § 117.05(4)(c), which states:
(4) When notarizing a signature, a notary public shall complete a jurat or notarial certificate in substantially the same form as those found in subsection (13). The jurat or certificate of acknowledgment shall contain the following elements:
(c) Whether the signer personally appeared before the notary public at the time of the notarization by physical presence or by means of audio-video communication technology as authorized under part II of this chapter.
While we are confident in our interpretation of the associated statures, at least one title company is requesting the new text print on the Florida mortgage now. Accordingly, the notary form has been updated to match the new short form effective immediately on the following four Florida mortgages:
- FL Mortgage (Cx317)
- FHA FL Mortgage (Cx19367)
- FL Mortgage Second (Cx476)
- HELOC Mortgage – FL (Cx1383)
We will also be working to update the Florida notary text on other affected documents. Citations to the Florida statutes are included below for your convenience.
Fla. Stat. Ann. § 117.05:
(13) The following notarial certificates are sufficient for the purposes indicated, if completed with the information required by this chapter. The specification of forms under this subsection does not preclude the use of other forms.” [Emphasis added]
Fla. Stat. Ann. § 695.25:
The forms of acknowledgment set forth in this section may be used, and are sufficient for their respective purposes, under any law of this state. The forms shall be known as “Statutory Short Forms of Acknowledgment” and may be referred to by that name. The authorization of the forms in this section does not preclude the use of other forms. [Emphasis added]
These changes will be in effect immediately. If you have any questions or concerns about these changes, please contact Client Support at 1.800.497.3584.