What You Need To Know About Zoom Real Estate Signings In Alberta
Traditionally, real estate signings happen in person, face-to-face, but now a days, this is not always possible. If the property you are buying or selling is in Alberta, Kahane Law Office can complete your real estate closing by Zoom meeting from the comfort of your home.
On February 24, 2021 the Alberta Government continued allowance to the use of video conferencing. This allows for more permanent signing options and may aid out of province buyers and sellers.
The Law Society of Alberta has set out strict adherence to a number of rules for remote signing Identification Requirements for Real Estate documents in Alberta. Prior to signing into a Zoom meeting, we will obtain your written consent to proceed with a zoom meeting. The following applies:
- Client identification, verification and over-site rules still apply.
- Only a Lawyer who is an active member with the Law Society of Alberta can witness, notarize, or commission documents.
- That lawyer requires current valid insurance in Alberta with the Alberta Lawyers Indemnity Association (ALIA). This means that uninsured corporate lawyers or members of the Alberta bar insured elsewhere lack the qualification (unless further clarifications allow for this).
- Both the lawyer and the client must have the same document in front of them. The lawyer and the client need to check the document to ensure it matches. The lawyer, on receiving the signed document back needs to ensure that the document is the same.
- Land Titles requires original “wet” signatures even with the new land titles video signing during Covid-19. This means they will reject copies of signatures.
- Lawyers must take precautions to ensure things like fraud, lack of capacity, duress, theft, etc. are not a factor.
- The documents require a specific note and / or amended jurat regarding the video conferencing.
Do I Need To Prepare Anything Before My Zoom Meeting?
- Your lawyer will need to receive written consent from you prior to the meeting to proceed with the Zoom signing.
- Ensure you have access to a printer and print out all documents your lawyer or paralegal sent you prior to the meeting. Having access to a printer is part of your responsibility to make certain the meeting runs smoothly.
- Verify your internet connection, test your speakers and webcam. We must be able to see and hear each other during the zoom meeting. Your lawyer must be able to see you sign the documents. Set up your camera for success. The zoom meeting is one session. We will need to reschedule your meeting if there are connection issues.
- Have your government issued ID’s ready. Identification must be valid. It is a requirement that you show the same ID’s during the video that you sent to your lawyer at the beginning of the zoom meeting, both the front and back.
- To ensure confidentiality, you will need to confirm that you are the only person in the room. Provide us a sufficient view of the room so we can verify you are alone. Ensure you remove any potential interruptions such as animals or children being present. Preferably, set up your Zoom meeting in a quiet place.
What Can I Expect During The Zoom Meeting?
- Once the Zoom meeting has begun, your lawyer and yourself will both have the identical set of papers in front of you. You will need to introduce yourself to your lawyer. You will also need to confirm that the documents in front of you match the documents on your lawyer’s screen by initialing the bottom right-hand corner of each page once instructed to.
- Kahane Law Office will be recording the zoom meeting and retain a copy for our records. We will be taking screen shots of you with your identification.
- We will review the documents with you at the same time, page by page, while instructing you to initial all pages.
What Happens Once The Zoom Meeting Has Finished?
- Once the meeting has ended, if you have access to a scanner, email your lawyer a completed PDF version or photograph of the signed documents as soon as possible after signing. Alternatively, you can hold up the page to the camera to indicate you have signed the document.
- Second, courier the original documents to your lawyer’s office as soon as possible. Documents sent by regular mail might delay your closing. Your lawyer will submit the original “wet ink” documents to Land Titles. Land Titles does not accept copies or electronic signatures.
- For your own records, your lawyer will send you an electronic version of all executed documents as part of the final reporting package.
The whole Kahane Law Office team of lawyers, paralegals and support staff prioritize the health and safety of you and your family. With zoom real estate signings during the Covid-19 pandemic, everyone remains safe. Email or call us in Calgary at 403-225-8810