A Notary Public is an official of integrity appointed by Secretary Of State — to serve the public as an impartial witness(duty-bound not to act in situations where they have a personal interest) in performing a variety of official fraud-deterrent acts related to the signing of important documents. These official acts are called notarizations, or notarial acts.
The most frequent service a Notary Public performs is the simple one of taking someone’s acknowledgment. An acknowledgment is the solemn statement of a person that he or she signed a paper of his or her own free will. The notary verifies the person’s identity, presses his/her notary seal on the paper and signs it where the notary is meant to sign.
Does the notarization makes any document “legal”?Anna Trojan2021-02-27T07:45:26-05:00
Notarization does not guarantee that the information on a document is accurate or legal. The signer is responsible for the content of the document. The Notary Public simply certifies the signer’s identity, usually by verifying a current identifying document containing a photo, physical description, and signature.
Government issued photo IDs, such as driver’s licenses, state ID cards, passports, military IDs, and inmate IDs are sufficient for certification.
Social Security cards, birth Certificates, credit cards, immigration cards, and temporary driver’s licenses are not suitable for certification.
Why documents need to be notarized?Anna Trojan2021-02-27T07:46:05-05:00
Having a notary serve as an third-party witness ensures that the signers of a document are who they say they are and that they signed the document under their own free will. The most common notarization is an acknowledgement – it’s a person’s sworn statement that he or she signed a paper by his or her own free will. To do this, a notary must verify the signer’s identity, apply his or her seal to the document, and then sign it.
Can I sign my document earlier?Anna Trojan2021-02-27T07:47:12-05:00
In order for a notary to issue acknowledgement, it is not necessary for the document to be signed in his or her presence. However, the signer must still appear before the notary at the time of the acknowledgement to swear he or she freely signed for the purposes stated in the document under his or her own will.
Some services, such as jurats, require the document actually be signed in the notary’s presence. A jurat requires the wording “subscribed and sworn to” on the document just above where the Notary Public signs his or her name.
What type of ID do you accept as an identification?Anna Trojan2021-02-27T07:47:48-05:00
Each signer must present at least one of the forms of photo ID listed below unless the signer is personally known to the Notary.
The ID must be current or, if expired, have been issued within the last 5 years; contain the signer’s photograph, personal description, and signature; and bear a serial or other identifying number. A document signer personally known to the Notary doesn’t need to present ID.
Current driver’s License or non-driver’s ID card issued by a U.S. State
Current U.S. Passport
Current U.S. Military Identification Card
Current driver’s license issued in Mexico or Canada
Current foreign passport
Current inmate ID.
Can you notarize a photocopy or a fax of the document?Anna Trojan2021-02-27T07:48:28-05:00
State law strictly prohibits Notaries from the practice of law. Notaries should never advise on any matter relating to a document unless they are an attorney or professionals certified or licensed in a relevant area of expertise.
What is an acknowledgement?Anna Trojan2021-05-17T17:42:14-04:00
The notary certifies having positively identified a document signer who personally appeared before the Notary and admitted having signed the document freely.
It shows that acknowledging party appeared personally before the Notary Public taking the acknowledgment.
Identifies acknowledging party by a name corresponding to acknowledge document.
A notary public signs it.
It is sealed with the notary’s official seal.
Proves signature’s authenticity.
For a notary to issue acknowledgment, the document doesn’t need to be signed in his or her presence. However, the signer must still appear before the notary at the time of the acknowledgment to swear he or she freely signed for the purposes stated in the document under his or her own will.
It is a notarial act in which a Notary certifies having watched the signing of a document and administered an oath or affirmation. The Notary’s function in executing a jurat is to appeal to the signer’s conscience and to initiate a process that could result in a criminal conviction for perjury if the signer is found to be lying under oath.
In executing a jurat, the Notary must watch the person sign the document, then have the signer make either a solemn, oral promise of truthfulness to a Supreme Being (called an oath) or a promise on one’s own personal honor (called an affirmation). The oath and affirmation have the same legal effect.
Jurats are common with documents that may be used as evidence in court proceedings, such as depositions and affidavits.
What is an “Exemplified copy” or “exemplification”?Anna Trojan2021-05-17T17:40:00-04:00
An exemplified copy (or exemplification) is an official attested copy or transcript of a public instrument, made under the seal and original pen-in-hand signature of a court or public functionary and in the name of the sovereign, e.g., “The People of the State of New York.”
Exemplifications can only be attested and executed by either the authority holding the record or the issuing authority. Exemplified copies are also usually an extract or transcript made directly from the original. They can be contrasted with certified copies which are attested by a public authority who does not necessarily execute the copy; are signed and sealed by the certifier, not necessarily the issuing authority or recorder; and are a facsimile, made from the original or not, and vary as to faithfulness, e.g., fair copy, imitative copy, and so forth.
Certified copies of birth and death records from New York City, Los Angeles, Georgia, and in certain other locations in the US can, if requested, be accompanied by a letter of exemplification. This is the first step in a process leading to authentication or an apostille.
Can Notary Public refuse to notarize someone’s signature?Anna Trojan2021-02-27T07:51:57-05:00
At Notary911 we will notarize signature under foreign document as long as the signer has a valid photo ID and understands what type of document he/she is signing. We will attached english notarial certificate to the document.
It is important that the signer and the Notary be able to communicate in the same language, without the reliance on a third party who, intentionally or unintentionally, may interpret the conversation incorrectly.
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Notary911 LLC is not a law office – we don’t practice law, draft legal documents, and do not give legal advice. If legal advice or other expert assistance is required, please consult with an attorney.