April 10, 2020
Freddie Mac Clarifies That Notarizations Witnessed Over Video Conference Are Not Subject to RON Minimum Standards

On April 10, 2020, Freddie Mac issued a new FAQ relative to the remote notarization processes being implemented across the country to address social distancing concerns raised by COVID-19. These processes allow notaries to observe over video conference a signer apply wet signatures to paper documents, which are then transmitted to the notary to complete using a traditional, wet notarization.

Freddie Mac clarified that such a process would be permissible if conducted in accordance with applicable state law. Remote notarization processes have been adopted in Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont under various emergency authorities. There is also pending legislation in Massachusetts that would permit the use of remote notarization during the COVID-19 crisis.

It is important to note that full remote online notarization (RON), which enables notaries to electronically notarize digital documents that are electronically signed by a remotely located individual, is subject to the minimum standards for remote notarizations set forth in previously issued Freddie Mac guidance.

CATIC continues to follow developments in guidance provided by the GSEs to lenders and their real estate partners. Should you have any questions about such guidance, please contact Rich Hogan, CATIC’s Chief Compliance Officer.
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Please continue to check out our dedicated webpage for COVID-19 information and guidance, on a regular basis. We will be updating the material as we learn of new developments.