Colorado notary law allows a Colorado notary to apply to become an electronic notary or e-notary.
The notary must be currently in good standing, must study the Colorado laws for electronic notarization, and submit an online application to the Colorado Secretary of State (SOS). There is no training or exam required, and there is no application fee.
Electronic notarization is used on electronic documents that are signed by the customer with an electronic signature and then notarized electronically. Paper documents are not used.
E-notarization does not mean remote notarization with a remote notary by audio/video communication. All requirements of a “wet ink” paper notarization must be met.
The customer must meet in person (physical presence) with the e-notary and provide satisfactory identification. There must be a notary certificate on the document. There must be no blank spaces in the document. The e-notary follows the normal procedure for an acknowledgment, oath or affirmation with the customer.
In Colorado, the definition and requirements for an electronic signature and electronic records are found in the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA) at CRS 24-71.3-101.
CRS 24-21-520 requires the notary to select one or more tamper-evident technologies to use when performing notarial acts on electronic records. The notary is not required to support all technologies requested by customers.
Under RULONA Section 20(a), tamper-evident technology is “one that is designed to allow a person inspecting an electronic record to determine whether there has been any tampering with the integrity of a certificate of notarial act logically associated with a record or with the attachment or association of the notarial act with that electronic record.”
The notary must notify the SOS before performing electronic notarization and must identify the technology to be used. The technology selected must comply with any rules or standards for approval of technology established by the SOS per CRS 24-21-527.
Document Authentication Number (DAN)
The e-notary attaches an electronic notary signature and a unique Document Authentication Number (DAN), issued to that notary by the SOS. Fifty DANs are issued at a time.
The DAN consists of two parts: the notary’s ID number, followed by a random number, generated by the SOS computer. The DAN is the legal equivalent of using a notary seal or embosser on a paper document.
The notary records the transaction in the notary journal, including the Document Authentication Number.
Electronic Notary Fee
The maximum notary fee allowed for notarizing a paper document is $5.
The maximum notary fee allowed for notarizing an electronic document is $10.
Currently, there is limited use of electronic notarization, but it is expected to increase over time. It can speed up document delivery by sending the document immediately by email or uploading to the destination, without using paper documents, express shipping or U.S. Postal Service mail delivery.
Electronic Notary Tutorial
The Colorado SOS has created an electronic notary tutorial.
Colorado Remote Online Notarization (RON) Update
Note: Over 20 states, including Virginia, have approved the use of remote online notarization (RON) by two-way audio/video communication with a remote notary.
Colorado lawmakers proposed the use of remote online notarization, in 2018 and 2019, but the bills did not pass the state legislature. The proposed maximum fee for remote notarization was $25. Another RON bill was submitted in January 2020 and is pending review and approval, but the legislature took an emergency recess. The SOS would develop notary rules for implementing remote online notarization.
Colorado Remote Notarization Rule 5 Approved
On March 28, 2020, due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic public health emergency, Governor Jared Polis signed an emergency order to temporarily suspend the requirement for a personal appearance before a notary and to allow remote notarization in Colorado using two-way audio/video communication. On March 30th, the Secretary of State released Colorado SOS Notary Rule 5 for Remote Notarization. This is a temporary emergency rule, not a statute passed by legislation. Authorization to perform remote notarizations expires on April 26, 2020, unless extended further by Executive Order.
Notaries are not required to offer remote notarization and may choose an acceptable audio/video platform. Notaries need time to learn and understand the emergency rule, set up an audio/video platform, and implement the emergency rule. Many senior citizens do not have or use computers or smartphones. In rural areas, cell phone and internet services are slower or more limited than in urban areas. Internet services are under heavy load due to the stay at home order from the Governor.
Contact Us for Colorado Electronic Notary Services
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We continue to research other service providers, including blockchain technology services.
[Last-Modified Date 2020-04-05] added remote notarization SOS emergency Rule 5