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Notary Notes

Highlights of the Proposed Regulations on RULONA

by PAN
The proposed regulations to implement RULONA were published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin on September 1, 2018. These proposed regulations are a result of written comments from 21 individuals on the draft "rulemaking" of December 2014. In essence, these proposed regulations provide extra details and explanations on various sections of the law.

It's important to note that these proposed regulatons have not been finalized until after a 60-day comment period. Once the comment period is over and the Department of State reviews the comments, the regulations will be published in its final form.

Here are highlights of the proposed regulations:
  • RULONA requires that notaries have custody and control of their official stamp and that the stamp must be locked away when not in use. The proposed regulations are citing the same "custody and control" of a notary's journal. "When not in use, the journal must be kept in a secure location and accessible only to the notary public. A secure location includes in the notary public's sole possession or in a locked location to which only the notary public has access."
  • The proposed regulations revise the credible witness identification section in that the credible witness makes a verification on oath or affirmation swearing or affirming that the individual appearing before the notary is the person named in the document. The credible witness knows the individual appearing before the notary thorugh "dealings sufficient to provide the credible witness with reasonable certainty that the individual has the identity claimed."
  • While the previous version of the proposed regulations stated that a passing score on the notary exam is 80 percent, the September 1, 2018 proposed regulations change it to a "75 scaled score."
  • The proposed regulations clarify that the certificate of notarial act must be worded and completed using the English language. This includes the certificate for a translation. "The certificate may be simultaneously worded and completed in another language that is read, written, and understood by the notary public and must be immediately adjacent to the English-language certificate, but the English-language certificate will prevail in the event of any conflict between translations."

Again, these proposed regulations have not been finalized by the Department of State.

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