Witnessing and executing documents by audio visual link…
On 22 April 2020, the New South Wales government passed the Electronic Transaction Amendment (Covid-19 Witnessing of Documents) Regulations 2020 NSW (Regulations) which provides clarity on how applicable documents (wills, power of attorneys, deeds, affidavits and statutory declarations) can be witnessed.
To begin with, the Regulations will last for 6 months after the date of the Regulations. These Regulations do not affect the traditional methods of witnessing and executing documents.
The audio visual link must allow the witness to observe the signing of the applicable documents in real time and examples include, but are not limited to platforms such as Zoom, WhatsApp, Skype and FaceTime. The witness must be reasonably satisfied that the document signed is the same document or a copy.
The witness must attest or confirm that the signature was witnessed by signing the document or a copy.
Lastly, there must be a statement on the document specifying the method used to witness the signature and that the document was witnessed in accordance with the Regulations.