Urgent call to action: Make remote notarization permanent

The New York Credit Union Association has issued an urgent call for action on legislation (S1780-C) that would make remote notarization a permanent part of New York state law. This legislation has cleared the Legislature and is awaiting Gov. Kathy Hochul’s signature. She must sign or reject the legislation by Dec. 22.

The passage of this legislation provides consumers — including credit union members — with the ability to choose an in-person or remote online notarization. By expanding notarization services to include remote online notarization, a broad cross-section of the public gain greater access to an essential financial service. New Yorkers such as the disabled; the elderly; working parents; active military members; and individuals located in rural or underserved areas, will have greater access to this important financial service with this legislation.

The Association is urging credit union advocates to copy and paste the letter below and send it to Karen Persichilli Keogh, secretary to the governor, at karen.p.keogh@exec.ny.gov. Please use the subject line: “Sign S.1780-C Remote Electronic Notarization into law!”

Dear Gov. Hochul,

I am writing to express my strong support for S.1780-C which seeks to create the option of remote notarization in New York State. Experience with remote notarization during the pandemic has proven it is safe and essential to consumers and should be made permanent.

The passage of this legislation provides consumers — including credit union members — with the ability to choose an in-person or remote online notarization (RON). By expanding notarization services to include RON, a broad cross-section of the public gain greater access to an essential financial service. New Yorkers such as the disabled; the elderly; working parents; active military members; and individuals located in rural or underserved areas, will have greater access to this important financial service with this legislation.

During the height of the pandemic, executive orders allowed notarial acts to be performed remotely. In turn, credit unions were able to better serve individuals, families, and hard-hit businesses. During this time, credit unions made more than 9,250 Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loans, processed high volumes of refinancing applications, and made repayment accommodations. Remote notarization empowered credit unions on their century-old mission of “People helping people,” and it should be codified into permanent state law.

Technology is rapidly evolving. New York State should strive to keep pace with these advances. Signing this legislation would permanently bring New York onto the same technological playing field as the majority of other states.

For these reasons, I urge you to sign S.1780-C.

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