Video technology for witnessing legal documents
Video conferencing technology like Skype, WhatsApp, FaceTime and Zoom can now be used in the witnessing of important legal documents like wills, powers of attorney and statutory declarations. The new temporary regulation will help reduce face-to-face contact during the COVID-19 pandemic. Under the new regulation, a witness must see a person signing the document in real time to confirm the signature is legitimate, but now they can do so using video conferencing technology. The witness will sign the document, or a copy of the document, to confirm they witnessed the signature. This could be done on a hard copy that is scanned and sent to the witness or on an identical counterpart of the document the signatory signs. Traditional methods of signing and witnessing these documents remain valid while the regulation is in force.