Lithuanian Parliament (Seimas) passed the amendment to the Law on the Notarial Profession on March 23, 2021, legalising remote notary deeds performed using modern information technologies.
Nearly a year after this amendment has been drafted by the Ministry of Justice, Seimas endorsed it with nearly unanimous vote -- 125 members voted in favor, one abstained.
"Legalizing remote notarial deeds will not just eliminate distance between notary and the client, it will also help to safeguard rule of law in the rapidly developing information society. Technology itself cannot ensure the justice, but it can effectively help notaries to secure the legitimacy in the sphere of civil law", Marius Stračkaitis, the President of Lithuanian Chamber of Notaries and notary of Klaipėda, said.
According to him, the amendment to the law will solve the problems of access to notaries in conditions of limited mobility, such as pandemics, or being abroad.
According to the amendment, the place of notarial acts performed remotely is considered to be the location of the notary's office. A notary can also perform notarial acts remotely for persons abroad.
Notary will be able to perform all notarial acts remotely, except for the certification of wills and the fact that a natural person is alive and in located a given area. Wills and personal wills equivalent to official wills will also not be accepted remotely.
The law amendment also stipulates that in order to ensure the protection of the legitimate interests of a person or the implementation of the provisions regulating the performance of notarial acts, a notary may decide not to perform a notarial deed remotely. In this case, the notarial act can be performed at the office of this notary.
When performing a notarial act remotely, the notary will be obliged to establish the identity of the person, clarify the meaning and consequences of the notarial act and ascertain the intention of the person, which will be confirmed by a qualified electronic signature. Notaries will have to ensure the security and cyber security of electronic information, use appropriate technical and organisational means of personal data processing, and properly transfer data to state registers and information systems.
The newly passed amendment must be signed the President of Lithuania. After that it will come into effect on July 1, 2021.