Notary publics are officialized by state governments after certification testing and, in some states, training to officiate documents as a witness. Notaries are used in the signing of important legal contracts, such as wills, property deeds, and powers of attorney, to ensure that no one was coerced or threatened into signing a contract.
Notaries safeguard individuals, private businesses, and public corporations from corrupt practices and ensure fairness as non-biased judicial representatives.
The fundamental difference between an e-notary and a normal notary is that the first can notarize documents online, while the latter can only notarize documents in person. More specifically, e-notaries can notarize through remote online notarization (RON) after a video call and remote ink notarization (RIN) by sharing, filling out, and printing forms through a computer interface.
Not every state allows for e-notaries, depending on laws and regulations, but it seems to be the direction many states are heading towards. States that allow e-notaries have prospective candidates complete a separate application after becoming an in-person notary. Those interested in becoming an e-notary should check with the state commissioning office for more details and to be directed to a training manual.