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Record-Keeping Requirements for Online Notaries

Does an online notary have to keep a record of all notarizations?

Yes. An online notary public is required to keep a record of all online notarizations. The electronic record must include the following for each notarization:

What is required to be contained on the recording of the audio-visual conference?

The recording is not required to include a copy of the documents being notarized, an image of the credential used for credential analysis, or the questions or answers used during identity proofing. This information would all be considered confidential and should not be recorded. If any biometric information or images of the identification card used for credential analysis is recorded, that portion of the recording must not be released without the consent of the individual whose identity is being established, unless ordered by a court or requested by the secretary of state.

How long do I have to keep the records of an online notarization?

You must keep the original recording and a back-up of the recording for five years following the date of the notarization. However, it is a best practice to retain the records indefinitely.

Where should I keep the records of an online notarization?

The record of an online notarization and back up should be kept under the exclusive control of the notary and maintained in computers or other storage devices that are capable of recording the required information. An online notary may contract with a third party to store the recordings if the third party:

If the contract between the third party and the notary public is terminated, all records must be transferred to the online notary public.

Do I have to provide copies of the audio-visual recording to the public?

Yes. The records of a notarization are public information, including the audio-visual recording. A notary should be prepared to provide copies of the records upon request and payment of fees. Fees for a copy of a record or paper in the notary public’s office is $.50 per page. For a certified copy, add $6.00 for a certificate.