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Uniform Laws Update—Property provides information on uniform and model state laws in development as they apply to property, trust, and estate matters. The editors of Probate & Property welcome information and suggestions from readers.
Revising the Uniform Law on Notarial Acts
In 1982, the Uniform Law Commission (ULC) completed work on the Uniform Law on Notarial Acts. The world has changed since 1982. The Internet formally came into being in 1994, the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA) was completed in 1999, the federal Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (ESign) was enacted in 2000, and the Uniform Real Property Electronic Recording Act (URPERA) was completed in 2004. These developments reflected and facilitated the use of electronic technologies in commercial transactions, including real property transactions.
Both UETA and ESign recognized that the failure to permit notarization of electronic records would interfere with electronic processing for real property transactions and thus the continued evolution of transaction processing. Both UETA and ESign provide that notarial acts can be evidenced on electronic records, without the necessity of affixing the traditional notarial seal. But these provisions were either ignored or caused confusion. States began striving to deal with the emergence of new technologies.
In 2008 the Uniform Law Commission commenced work to revise the Uniform Law on Notarial Acts—to modernize the statute and provide a stable foundation for notarial certificates and affirmations.
Highlights of the revision include:
After a year of effort, the Drafting Committee submitted its work for a first reading at the 2009 ULC Annual Meeting and is progressing toward a second and final reading in 2010. The Drafting Committee is assisted by ABA Advisor James Wine, representing the RPTE Section, and ABA Advisor David Ewan, for the Section of Science and Technology, as well as observers from the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS), various individual Secretaries of State offices, the Property Records Industry Association (PRIA), the International Association of County Recorders, Election Officials, and Treasurers (IACREOT), the major notarial associations, and other interested parties and individuals. Copies of drafts and reports can be obtained from the ULC web site. Anyone interested in becoming an observer is invited to contact the ULC at its Chicago office, at (312) 450-6600, or at www.nccusl.org.Return to Probate & Property Magazine