Real ID, the Notary, and RON

For those unaware, changes to identification are coming.

Real ID goes into full effect on October 1st.

But, does it, or should it, affect a notary and the future of signings, even if those signings are only of a certain type or types.

What is Real ID?

Real ID is a new standard of identification that will be required to do certain things, such as flying.

Done through your existing driver’s license, the applying person’s identity has to be proven by multiple other sources of identity. It is not required, but as mentioned above, those without Real ID will be limited in things like flying.

The REAL ID Act establishes minimum security standards for license issuance and production and prohibits Federal agencies from accepting for certain purposes driver’s licenses and identification cards from states not meeting the Act’s minimum standards. The purposes covered by the Act are: accessing Federal facilities, entering nuclear power plants, and, boarding federally regulated commercial aircraft.


Again, it is not required, and some states are resisting. But, if you want or need more information, check out their FAQ’s.

Notaries, Real ID, Trust and RON

What About In Person and Mobile Signings

It is hard to guess how, or even if Real ID will have an affect on the average notary.

Our guess is not.

We’ll say it again. Real ID is not required. So some signers will not have them. But, in person, be it static or mobile, verifying identification is not only possible, it is expected.

There are also groups, like immigrants, who have arrived and need notary services. Many of them are preyed upon by notarios, and should have access to notary services that are professional, properly done and promptly. Or as we’ve liked to call them since we wrote the previous sentence, The Three Peas.

What About Real ID and Remote Online Notarizations?

Could it, Should It?

If we are to notarize documents remotely, should it be required all signers have the golden standard for identification? We’ve already been bombarded with how new technology will do this, but is that going to work all the time, or is it smoke and mirrors?

Brace Yourself Real ID is Coming - Ned Start Meme

So, why not use a system that is in place, and has already been available in most states for the last couple of years?

If warranted, this is a national standard that can be rolled out efficiently. It is also one that the federal government believes is the best way of identification for access to sensitive sites and information.

One could easily say that notaries are controlled by the state, and should not be subject to federal standards or policy. And, they would have a valid point.

But, another valid point would be that states are only adopting a federal standard, which will help integration between states as the industry evolves at a frenetic pace.

Real ID or Not, Notaries Bestow Trust

We talk about it all the time. Notaries instill trust into a signing. They give a signing legitimacy.

With or without Real ID, professional notaries are still going to instill trust. Many of the most important times in a person’s life, the notary makes it legitimate, because the signers trust they will do the job to the highest standards.

Would a Real ID requirement instill more trust in a notarization? Or would it be an onerous burden that prevents people from getting the proper notary services they need?

Or would it differ based on the type of signing?

More trust is always tremendous for a notary. The question is the correct path forward as the industry evolves. New technology is arriving, if not already here.

But, which technology will help instill the most trust? That is the most important question.

This is the fourth installment on remote online notarization and the things around it. You can find other articles below:

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