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Remote Signatures Under Governor's Executive Order

Written by Marty Bodnar, Estate Planning Attorney

As a result of the Stay at Home, Be Safe executive order issued by Governor Whitmer in response to the Coronavirus virus people are required to stay home and quarantine. Did you know we’re still available via phone, Zoom or Skype to start a conversation about getting your affairs in order? In the past, we couldn’t sign the documents because the law requires the physical presence of two witnesses and a notary. Until now!  

On April 8th, Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-41, allowing electronic signatures and remote witnessing and notarization effective. This is immediately and will remain in place until June 30, 2020. The following are the highlights of this executive order:

  • The video conference must allow direct interaction between the parties by sight and sound;
  • A recording of the signing must be retained for a period of time;
  • The signer must
    • display photo ID on camera during the video conference to identify themselves,
    • affirmatively represent his or her physical location,
    • state what documents he or she wants to sign, 
    • show the documents to the witnesses clearly on the video conference, and
    • sign the documents during the video conference
  • Signer sends a legible copy of the signed documents by fax, mail, or email directly to:
    • a.    The notary on the same date it was signed to be notarized (no time limit); or
    • b.    Witnesses within 72 hours of the dateit was signed;

If you want to start your estate planning process and eventually sign your documents remotely under these new procedures, please contact Marty Bodnar at 734-665-4441 or email

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