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Close this message COVID-19 - As recommended precautions continue to increase for COVID-19, the James E. Rudder Building will be closed to visitors and customers beginning Wednesday, March 18, 2020. The Office of the Secretary of State is committed to continuing to provide services to ensure business and public filings remain available 24/7 through our online business service, SOSDirect or use the new SOSUpload. Thank you in advance for your patience during this difficult time. Information on Testing Sites is now available.

Notice of Suspension of Statutes

The Office of the Governor is in receipt of OAG’s request to temporarily suspend certain statutes concerning appearance before a notary public. OAG asserts that strict compliance with these laws could prevent, hinder, or delay efforts to cope with the COVID-19 disaster. Minimizing in-person contact with people who are not members of the same household is necessary to slow the spread of COVID-19. OAG has identified provisions that frustrate this public-health goal by arguably requiring in-person appearance before a notary public to execute a self-proved will, a durable power of attorney, a medical power of attorney, a directive to physician, or an oath of an executor, administrator, or guardian. OAG’s request would temporarily relax the in-person requirements to allow for appearance before a notary public via videoconference, avoiding the need for face-to-face contact during a pandemic.

In accordance with section 418.016 of the Texas Government Code, and subject to the conditions set forth below, the Office of the Governor suspends the following statutes to the extent necessary to allow for appearance before a notary public via videoconference:

The following conditions shall apply whenever this suspension is invoked:

This suspension, granted on April 8, 2020, is in effect until terminated by the Office of the Governor or until the March 13, 2020 disaster declaration is lifted or expires.  Documents executed while this suspension is in effect, and in accordance with its terms, shall remain valid after the termination of this suspension.