In light of the recent LSO directions regarding remote commissioning, we have put together an outline of an approach that real estate lawyers can consider when obtaining a remote signature from a client. This is not legal advice and has not been approved by the Law Society of Ontario but is rather offered as a resource.
- Video Conferencing Capability
Lawyers will need to utilize a video conferencing capability (“VC”) that is easily accessible by their clients.
In light of the fact that some clients may not have video cameras on their computers the VC should be useable by the client on their cell phone (which will in all likelihood have a camera).
Lawyers and clients may have preferred VCs, and there are several options available at little or no cost in the marketplace right now. As long as the video and sound quality are good and all of the parties can use it, the choice of VC doesn’t really matter.
- Document Scanning and Transmission
Clients may need to have access to a reliable document scanning capability in order to upload documents (via cell phone) and transmit them to lawyer. Otherwise, lawyers should ensure that documents can be couriered to them.
- Virtual Commissioning
Although legislation has been introduced to provide for virtual commissioning, regulations are not in place to define the applicable requirements related thereto. The closing protocol discussed in this document relies on the information in the Law Society’s Corporate Statement re: COVID-19, as set out on Schedule A.