Washington DOL Extends Emergency Remote Notarization Rule

The Washington Department of Licensing (DOL) recently extended the existing emergency rule allowing for remote notarization, effective since July 25, 2020.  Along with the most recent extension, the DOL also filed notice for permanent rule making, inviting interested stakeholders to participate in the rule-making process by contacting rulescoordinator@dol.wa.gov.

The emergency rule was initially enacted in March 2020 in response to the COVID-19 State of Emergency that was declared by Proclamation 20-05.  Since then, this emergency rule has been reissued by the Governor four separate times to, “decrease in-person notarization to assist with COVID-19 response efforts, allowing remote notarization in Washington State ahead of Senate Bill 5641 implementation.”

This extension continues to apply to the “many professional services require[ing] the use of notary services for a variety of purposes,” including executing advanced healthcare directives, wills, deeds of trust, durable powers of attorney for health care, irrevocable trusts or living trusts, real estate transfer, and affidavits of identity just to name a few.