Remote Online Notarization (RON)

Frequently Asked Questions

Remote online notarization (RON), or remote notarization, is when a document is notarized electronically using audio-video technology. Documents are shared electronically and both the signing and notary process occur face-to-face in a virtual environment.

RON is not the same as eNotary and it’s important to understand and use the terminology appropriately in order to distinguish a difference between the two solutions. There are two main differences, the first being that some states who have approved eNotary, have not yet adopted RON so how a transaction is conducted matters in terms of compliance for each type of notarization. And, secondly, there is a difference in how the signers’ identification validation process is conducted.

Remote online notarization (RON):

  • Parties are not in the same room as a RON session occurs via a recorded audio-video conference.

  • The audio-video conference includes the notary, the borrower and a witness and/or another party the transaction may require.

  • Rules around ID validation vary by state and include specific measures that ensure validation is done properly.

  • In most cases, the borrowers’ ID is validated through a knowledge-based authentication (KBA) method in addition to presenting a valid state driver license or state identification card to the notary public through the technology. 

eNotary:

  • A notary public and the borrower are in the same room (signing in-person) so the borrower’s ID can be validated in person and per state’s guidelines.

  • The signature is realized electronically and the notary stamp is done digitally rather than with a physical stamp on a hard-copy of the document.

RON works with most internet browsers on a computer, smartphone or tablet. An internet connection is required as RON takes place in a live video session. 

For home equity or mortgage loans, and once the transaction is clear-to-close, the lending staff can schedule a date and time convenient for the borrower(s) to join a RON session. 

The session is controlled by the notary public. All that is required is for every RON session attendee to have a computer, smartphone, or tablet with audio and video capabilities. 

The process is the same as the physical notary process however it moves to an environment where the borrower and witness and/or any additional party required meet in a virtual environment:

  1. The document(s) which need to be eSigned or notarized is uploaded by the lender or notary public into the session in a PDF format. 

  2. Proof of identity is validated using knowledge-based authentication (KBA) or per state requirements.  

  3. The borrower is connected with a commissioned notary public through live video to confirm identity (usually a valid state driver’s license). 

  4. Notarized documents are then captured and provided to the lender with the option to securely share with the borrower for download, save, or share. 

For financial institution currently utilizing LenderClose, the process is fairly straightforward. The LenderClose platform has a RON solution today. Simply contact a LenderClose relationship manager or the support team to learn more. 

Financial institutions looking to implement RON and aren’t currently a LenderClose client, contact a LenderClose sales executive or schedule a demo. 

The COVID-19 pandemic is causing states legislators to prioritize passing the legislation for legalizing RON  in their state. For more information about RON in a specific state, contact LenderClose or schedule a demo today.

This depends on the state the document is executed in. Generally, most lending related documents can be executed via remote online notarization. 

In states where RON is legal, mortgage and home equity loan transactions can be executed utilizing RON. 

However, loans conforming to guidelines established by government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) may fall under separate guidelines and would require additional workarounds such as hybrid closings and/or in-person closings.

A financial institution could make internal policy changes allowing RON for portfolio (non-confirming / non-GSE) mortgage and home equity loans. 

Schedule a demo to learn more about the LenderClose RON solution. 

Similar to the eSign process, the notary stamp is a digital stamp that is applied by the notary at a click of a button in the notary session.

The LenderClose RON solution is flexible and offers the options for financial institutions to either utilize their own notary publics or LenderClose nationally approved eNotary/RON signing agents. 

In some states where RON and/or eNotarization is legal, a notary public must go through an application and validation process with the state in order to ensure compliance. Each state establishes its own rules for this process. For state-specific information, check with the state’s Secretary of State office.

The process is fairly simple. A LenderClose implementation manager will help navigate the process. The financial institution’s account will be set-up within 72 hours and 3 to 5 business days for each individual notary (if not already in the system) to be added to the solution.

Yes, however, in states where RON is legal, notary publics must go through an online validation process before being able to notarize documents digitally. For state-specific information, check with the state’s Secretary of State office.

Recorded transaction video sessions are stored securely and can be accessed by the notary public appointed to the transaction at any time. Records are saved indefinitely in order to comply with state guidelines. 

RON works best with Google Chrome or Firefox. Each device (computer, tablet, and/or smartphone) must have a functional camera and microphone that is accessible by the browser. If the browser cannot access the camera and/or microphone, the RON session will not work on the device.

Knowledge-based authentication, commonly referred to as KBA, is a method of authentication which seeks to prove the identity of someone accessing a service such as a financial institution or website. As the name suggests, KBA requires the knowledge of private information of the individual to prove that the person providing the identity information is the owner of the identity. 

Using a secure hyperlink the borrower(s) invited to a RON session, must undergo a KBA process in order to be authorized to enter the digital closing session.

Signer(s) must be a U.S. Citizen.
Signer(s) must be 18 years old, or older. 
Signer(s) must have a Social Security Number.
Signer(s) must have a valid U.S. driver’s license or State ID.
Signer(s) must have at least 5 years U.S. credit history.
Signer(s) must have a U.S. mobile number.
 

Up to eight (8) participants including the notary public are allowed per closing session.

No, participants must pass KBAs on their own device for a RON transaction to meet compliance. To individually pass KBA, each participant is required to connect and participate in the RON session using their internet-connected, audio-visual enabled device (computer, tablet, or smartphone).