The Vermont Statutes Online
The Vermont Statutes Online have been updated to include the actions of the 2023 session of the General Assembly.
NOTE: The Vermont Statutes Online is an unofficial copy of the Vermont Statutes Annotated that is provided as a convenience.
Subchapter 001 : General Provisions(Cite as: 26 V.S.A. § 5304)
§ 5304. Definitions
As used in this chapter:
(1) “Acknowledgment” means a declaration by an individual before a notary public that the individual has signed a record for the purpose stated in the record and, if the record is signed in a representative capacity, that the individual signed the record with proper authority and signed it as the act of the individual or entity identified in the record.
(2) “Certificate” or “notarial certificate” means the part of, or attachment to, a notarized document that is completed by a notary public, bears the required information set forth in section 5367 of this chapter, and states the facts attested to or certified by the notary public in a particular notarization.
(3) “Commission term” means the two-year period commencing on February 1 and continuing through January 31 of the second year following the commencement of the term.
(4) “Communication technology” means an electronic device or process operating in accordance with section 5380 of this chapter and any standards adopted by the Office pursuant to section 5323 of this chapter that:
(A) allows a notary public and a remotely located individual to communicate with each other simultaneously by sight and sound; and
(B) when necessary and consistent with other applicable laws, facilitates communication with a remotely located individual who has a vision, hearing, or speech impairment.
(5) “Electronic” means relating to technology having electrical, digital, magnetic, wireless, optical, electromagnetic, or similar capabilities.
(6) “Electronic signature” means an electronic symbol, sound, or process attached to or logically associated with a record and executed or adopted by an individual with the intent to sign the record.
(7) “Foreign state” means a government other than the United States, a state, or a federally recognized Indian tribe.
(8) “Identity proofing” means a process or service operating in accordance with section 5380 of this chapter and any standards adopted by the Office pursuant to section 5323 of this chapter by which a third person provides a notary public with a means to verify the identity of a remotely located individual by a review of personal information from public or private data sources.
(9) “In a representative capacity” means acting as:
(A) an authorized officer, agent, partner, trustee, or other representative for a person other than an individual;
(B) a public officer, personal representative, guardian, administrator, executor, trustee, or other representative, in the capacity stated in a record;
(C) an agent or attorney-in-fact for a principal; or
(D) an authorized representative of another in any other capacity.
(10)(A) “Notarial act” means an act, whether performed with respect to a tangible or an electronic record, that a notary public may perform under the law of this State. The term includes taking an acknowledgment, administering an oath or affirmation, taking a verification on oath or affirmation, attesting a signature, certifying or attesting a copy, and noting a protest of a negotiable instrument.
(B) “Notarial act” does not include a corporate officer attesting to another corporate officer’s signature in the ordinary course of the corporation’s business.
(C) Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to require the use of a notary public to witness a signature that is allowed by law to be witnessed by an individual who is not a notary public.
(11) “Notarial officer” means a notary public or other individual authorized to perform a notarial act
(12) “Notary public” means an individual commissioned to perform a notarial act by the Office.
(13) “Office” means the Office of Professional Regulation within the Office of the Secretary of State.
(14) “Official stamp” means a physical image affixed to or embossed on a tangible record or an electronic image attached to or logically associated with an electronic record.
(15) “Outside the United States” means a location outside the geographic boundaries of the United States; Puerto Rico; the U.S. Virgin Islands; and any territory, insular possession, or other location subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
(16) “Person” means an individual, corporation, business trust, statutory trust, partnership, limited liability company, association, joint venture, public corporation, government or governmental subdivision, agency, or instrumentality, or any other legal or commercial entity.
(17) “Record” means information that is inscribed on a tangible medium or that is stored in an electronic or other medium and is retrievable in perceivable form.
(18) “Remotely located individual” means an individual who is not in the physical presence of the notary public who performs a notarial act under section 5379 of this chapter.
(19) “Sign” means, with present intent to authenticate or adopt a record:
(A) to execute or adopt a tangible symbol; or
(B) to attach to or logically associate with the record an electronic symbol, sound, or process.
(20) “Signature” means a tangible symbol or an electronic signature that evidences the signing of a record.
(21) “Stamping device” means:
(A) a physical device capable of affixing to or embossing on a tangible record an official stamp; or
(B) an electronic device or process capable of attaching to or logically associating with an electronic record an official stamp.
(22) “State” means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
(23) “Verification on oath or affirmation” means a declaration, made by an individual on oath or affirmation before a notary public, that a statement in a record is true. (Added 2017, No. 160 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. July 1, 2019; amended 2019, No. 30, § 27; 2021, No. 171 (Adj. Sess.), § 5, eff. July 1, 2022.)