Currently, 29 states permit some form of remote online notarization (RON) and Louisiana is (almost) one of them.[1] House bill 274 of the 2020 regular session of the Louisiana State Legislature was signed into law on June 11, 2020. HB 274, among other things, permits the use of remote online notarization in Louisiana. However, the effective date of the bill is not until February 1, 2022.  So, although it is codified, it is not in effect until next year.

It is worth noting that a similar bill has been introduced on the federal level for the second year in a row. Senators Cramer (R-ND) and Warner (D-VA) have introduced S. 1625, the Securing and Enabling Commerce Using Remote and Electronic Notarization Act of 2021 or the SECURE Notarization Act of 2021. This bill would allow every notary public in the United States to perform RONs.[2] If the SECURE act is signed into law on the federal level, it would supersede any pending state legislation and RONs may be permitted prior to February 1, 2022.

Electronic Notarization vs. Remote Online Notarization

Currently, Louisiana notary publics may notarize a document electronically which simply means instead of an ink signature, the document may use an electronic signature. However, the notary, the signer, and any witnesses must still be face-to-face in person.

RON allows for notaries to notarize documents for signers who are not physically present with them, but are present through audio-visual technology.

House Bill 274

Under HB 274, any Louisiana notary with an existing commission may perform RONs as long as they 1) contract with a RON technology provider, 2) complete a RON training course, and 3) submit an application to the Louisiana Secretary of State.[3]

The procedure for performing a RON is fairly simple. The first step is for both parties (the notary and the party for whom the notarized document is for) to log on to the dedicated RON platform where their identities will be confirmed. Next, the notary and the signer will meet through audio-visual technology. At this time, the notary shall verify the identity of the party appearing remotely by confirming the signer’s identity either by asking to see some form of identification or they may confirm the signer’s identity through their own personal knowledge. The signer then uses an electronic signature to sign the document. The notary will then review the document, fill out the notarial certificate, and attach a digital certificate containing their electronic signature. The final step requires the notary to create an electronic journal entry through the RON platform. The notarization is also recorded, and the notary shall save the recording. The notary is required maintain the audio-visual recording for at least ten years after the date of the RON.[4]

When a notary is performing a RON for a party who is physically not in their presence, if the type of notarial act requires a witness, the witness must be physically present with the signer. The notarial act is deemed to be executed in the parish where the notary public is physically located at the time of the RON.


For those who have lived through the COVID-19 pandemic, remote notarization is a much-welcomed change. While many states enacted temporary measures during the pandemic to address ongoing notarial needs during stay-at-home orders, the passage of HB 274 will ensure notaries will be able to perform their duties safely regardless of the imposition of any stay-at-home orders, and, at the same time, provide the convenience to individuals needing the services of a notary to obtain those services from the comfort of their home.


[1] Margo H. Tank, et al., “[UPDATED] Coronavirus: Federal and state governments work quickly to enable remote online notarization to meet global crisis”, DLA Piper (27 April 2021) (

[2] “Notarize Congratulates Senators Warner and Cramer on the Introduction of the SECURE Notarization Act of 2021”, Businesswire (17 May 2021) (

[3] “How to Become a Remote Online Notary in Louisiana”, National Notary Association, (,for%20signers%20in%20any%20location.)

[4] House bill 274, Louisiana State Legislature, 2020 Reg. Sess. (Louisiana 2020).