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December 22, 2014

Notary Marketing Tip: Registering with Consulates

Filed under: Marketing Articles — Tags: , — admin @ 2:57 am

I have heard many notary marketing tips in my career, but this one is truly unique.

One notary says that he registered himself with a consulate in Columbia. I thought to myself that Columbia is a little far away for a notary to go for a simple notary request. But, those contacting the consulate there, might be located in California and be able to use that particular notary for an Apostille. There are all types of foreign embassies and consulates right here on American soil that you can network with. There are also many that are overseas that you can also network with. You never know. They might need you within weeks of your contact!

There are many international types of documents that need to be notarized or have Apostilles for. There are adoption papers, school transcripts, copies of identification documents (be careful with this one,) and more. Of course, with any international notarization, be careful, because people in foreign countries want it done their way which is not necessarily legal here. Some are happy that you just stamp a blank piece of paper which will get you thrown in jail over here. So, try to understand exactly what the foreign country wants, and find a legal way to satisfy them. It is common that international documents are returned for some nit-picky reason (especially with the Chinese.) So, be careful.


December 21, 2014

123notary Reviews

There are many sites out there that recommend 123notary. However, there is no organized way to find testimonials or reviews about There are individual notary web pages that mention that they are certified or elite certified by There are resource pages which recommend 123notary as a resource as well. Additionally, on Facebook, there are discussions where notaries give their honest opinion about which notary directory they like the most. Sometimes they like 123notary most while others prefer Notary Rotary or Notary Cafe.

Here are some links to sites that have unbiased commentary about

Read this one first!
Leon Austin comments that 123notary certification is hard, but in terms of return on investment, has been one of the best!

123notary vs. Notary Rotary
The notaries disagree as to which site gets them more business. Read the nitty gritty!

Notary Memphis
This site gives a quick description of the perks of 123notary and other notary sites.

Houston Mobile Notary Service
They describe the benefits of 123notary Elite certification.

Helpful Links
Find helpful links here about many notary organizations including 123notary!

How to get started as a mobile notary.
123notary is listed as a resource

#123notary on our blog
We have many posts under the tag #123notary on our blog. It is us talking about us, but interesting reading none-the-less.
It includes one negative review about us from a Russian lady who complained she got too many calls for notary work from our site. Of all the bad reviews I’ve ever gotten, that is the absolute best.

CA Notary Services
This notary is Certified by 123notary and his page shows up on the first page of Google because he links to his own page from his other sites. Interesting!

The Delaware Notary Association
They list 123notary as a resource

Florida Preferred Notary
This Notary is Elite certified by 123notary!

Instagram Photos of 123notary

Julian Hill
He produced a VIDEO about his notary service in NYC & mentions he is 123notary certified

Here is an Elite Certified Notary’s website

Frank Tabacca is a member of many notary organizations and 123notary certified!

Notaries discuss 123notary’s Elite Certification
This discussion doesn’t exactly support my cause of selling more Elite certifications. Many notaries claim that more certifications are not necessary. One compares them to Boy Scout Merit Badges. However, in real life, Elite certified signers get 4x the business than those not certified by 123notary in similar positions in the search results!



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123notary’s Google+ Page
This is brand new, and it is yet another place to read our notary posts and shares. There is also a community where you can post your own content. Anyone with a Gmail account can participate in our community. Just join!

123notary’s Linked In Page
For discussions that are fun, visit our Facebook page. But, if you want practical down to business discussions, our Linked In members are top notch in this respect and will deliver riveting opinions!

My personal Twitter
I use it more for notary tweets than anything else, but there are all types of tweets there if you are interested.

123notary listings on 123epayment.
Purchase listings here. But, you might ask Carmen first before you make a purchase just to be on the safe side.

Our travel blog! Great foodie & travel information
This is where we have our certification courses and tests!


December 21, 2014

Should 123notary’s login be accessible by cell phone?

Filed under: Technical & Legal — admin @ 8:28 am

One of our clients scolded us and said that our page that allows you to login to your listing should be accessible by cell phone. That might be expensive to program. I’m not sure if it would even be a good idea.

We could create a page where you could confirm your listing from a cell phone easily. Maybe that would be a good idea.

But, there is so much information on your admin page, that accessing it from a cell phone might not work too well.

We welcome commentary on this interesting point. It is really what you guys think that matters.


December 20, 2014

Signing Companies w/Bad Reviews (F)

Filed under: Signing Company Gossip — admin @ 8:23 am

Here are some more signing companies that got bad reviews on our list of signing companies. 123notary doesn’t have an opinion as to whether or not we like these companies. The reviews were made purely by the notaries who use our system.


Field Choice

Final Link

Finish Line Signing

Finiti Title

Firma Signing Solutions

Genuine Title Company, LLC

Greenbelt Real Estate


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Playing the cancer card after you made a blunder

Signing services take a portion of the notary fee


December 19, 2014

Notary Suggestions Box

Filed under: Humorous Posts — Tags: — admin @ 9:25 am

If there were a notary suggestion box, what would people put in it?
You just take a small piece of paper, fold it up and put it in the fox. It’s a little like a fortune cookie except that there is nothing to munch on and “you not live long live” — probably!

Here are some suggestions we think might go well in the box.

(1) Lose the fat tie buddy, the 70′s were over decades ago!
(2) You brought your screaming three year old to a signing? Really!
(3) 123notary needs to have photo upload options so notaries can upload their best pics.
(4) The notary was three minutes late. She should call if she is going to be late. We were waiting!
(5) The lender needs to explain things to us a bit better before the notary arrives. I felt completely unprepared.
(6) For Vampire notaries: Seriously guys, get chalices, Dixie cups just have no class!
(7) Please don’t park in my driveway. Your car leaks oil and Harry had to get out and was stuck!
(8) The notary took 24 hours to answer my email. I need answers right away.
(9) Why do we HAVE to sign that journal thing? That’s like so stupid!
(10) The notary answered the phone saying, “Hello?” Seriously, are you a business or not?

If the Notary suggestion box were shaped like a fortune cookie, here is what the suggestion would say…
Person who chases two rabbits catches neither — Confucius
The Tao and 50 cents will get you on the bus — Facetious


December 18, 2014

What to get a Notary for Christmas

Filed under: Etiquette — Tags: , , , — admin @ 8:40 pm

What should you get a notary for Christmas?
What can you get them that they need, but don’t already have?

I know what you are thinking — toner!
Get a notary a few packs of toner. They will need it. It is a consumable. You can’t lose. UNLESS, they change the type of laser printer they have right after your expensive gift of toner. On the other hand, what about a super fast laser printer that spits the pages out 100 pages per minute!

What about a bigger and better GPS system?
Notaries need GPS systems. They use them every day to find addresses. They already have one, but a new and improved one might be good.

How about a phrase book for foreign languages?
What if you have a Samoan customer, and you don’t speak a word of Samoan. A good phrase book could do you some good. That way if grandma is around, you know what to say. And if they offer you some island food, you will know what it is — assuming your phrase book was any good. Never mind that the phonetics in these books are never correct, and they never teach you how to talk like locals really talk — and never mind that they ignore the issue of dialects and variations on greetings. Just get a phrase book. I had Samoan food once in Boston. I liked it so much I asked for “Samoa…”

Psychic friends?
Imagine a service where you call a psychic and ask him, “Where is that damn lender,” and the psychic can actually tell you and reach the lender when the borrower has a nit-picky question that you can’t answer or are not supposed to answer! Most notaries would be able to use that a few times per year (or per hour!)

What notaries really need!
Notaries really need a gift certificate for some legal services so they can learn how to protect themselves from companies who don’t pay them.

Although you have blown it for this Christmas, there is always next Christmas. So, save these ideas in your mental data storage units, keep a backup, and hope for the best!

(1) What should you get a notary for Christmas? Toner! Unless they are going to change their printer soon.
(2) What should you get a notary for X-mas? A gift certificate for legal services to help them get paid.

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A Christmas Eve Closing

Santa Needs a Notary


December 17, 2014

Lame Replies to Mobile Notary

Lame Replies to Mobile Notary
There are just about zero search results for someone who offers a walk in notary service in Manhattan; and has no other service offerings. A “notary only” walk in location is, with NYC rents, the surest and quickest way to going bankrupt. Some offer walk in notary service as a sideline, but on a very limited basis. Many of my clients report that the notary is not in when they get there. Frequently the “bank notary” is very choosey as to what they will process. Of course only for the favored clients of the bank, but even then there are limitations. I commonly receive feedback that getting a power of attorney is extremely difficult. Perhaps, because the parent firm is wary of being involved in litigation.

Thus, in addition to the “live ones” I receive many “dud” calls, they want a walk in two dollar notary service. In their fantasy they envision a richly appointed office, complete with toilet and free coffee. I have had callers asking me to “stay open an hour or two late” as they were not sure exactly when they would be presenting me their two dollars!

It gets humorous at times when they realize that my service is not walk in; but rather that I would be going to them. Most understand that they have not reached the elusive walk in advertiser, but connected with a mobile service. Not wishing to schedule an appointment and pay the higher mobile notary fee, they often bestow upon me interesting reasons. Not all do that. Some face the situation honestly and respond that a mobile service is not what they were looking for. I admire their frank and direct responses. But the others…….

Let me gather my thoughts. I need my spouse’s permission. I don’t think it would be as valid if you notarized at my location than if you notarized at your location. If you want to come to me and charge me the same two dollars, I’m willing to wait half an hour for you. I’m not sure that it needs to be notarized. I just wanted to know where a notary was in case I needed one. It’s risky to sign papers, can you just notarize it and perhaps I will sign it later. There are two documents that need to be notarized and a different notary is required for each, I thought you were a notary central with multiple notaries always available. Are you a 24 hour notary, I’m not sure when I will want you. Lastly, let me add my all time favorite response: Do you charge for your services?

Some shift into the classic “it aint me” position. When I inquire as to what needs to be done, they fall back to “it’s for my boss, I was not told what, only to find a notary”. One said they “were in a cloud” and only know the unopened package of documents needs to be “processed” by a notary. I wondered if that cloud was raining upon them. Frequently the clock is the culprit. Can I swing by in the next half hour? I reply that I could be at their location in under half an hour. But, I don’t think my papers would be ready in time for your arrival, can I “get back to you”.

Actually I have a somewhat unfair advantage. I have had the same conversation hundreds of times and know all the right questions. Some “aggressive” callers will push me for a fee quote without giving me any details. I give them the analogy of calling a plumber, complaining of water on the floor and wanting, with just that information, a firm quote to find and fix the leak.

However silly, each caller must be greeted with respect and politeness. Many say they will have to call back, assure them in a sincere tone of voice that you will be waiting for their call.


December 16, 2014

A forged document vs. a forged notary seal?

What if the document was forged.
Imagine that you are a notary public who just got in huge trouble for notarizing a forged document. It is not your responsibility to know that the document was forged. It is only your responsibility to know that the person who was documented as signing the document appeared before you, proved their identity, and signed the document before you notarized it.

Forged Identification
Or what if the ID used for the notarization was forged? You can still take journal thumbprints and that can get you off the legal hook a lot faster if you keep a record of those thumbprints. But, what about a forged notary seal?

E&O won’t help unless you made an error.
Some notaries think that since they have Errors & Omissions insurance that they will be covered. But, does E&O cover legal expenses? The real problem is that E&O will probably say that the notary didn’t make any errors — it was someone else who forged their seal. Therefore it is a criminal matter, and the notary in question is not at fault — providing you can prove that the notary seal indeed was forged.

If your notary seal was forged, how would you prove it?
My notary seal’s impression was copied onto an Acknowledgment form. The notary’s handwriting on the form didn’t match mine at all and they didn’t cross out the his/her/their or the (s) on the certificate either proving that they were not me, and most likely not a notary (at least not a good notary.) If the borders on the seal don’t match yours, that is another clue. If you don’t have a journal entry of the transaction, that might void the notarization entirely in certain states — not sure what the law says about that one. But, it could constitute proof that you didn’t do the notarization in question if there is no journal entry, assuming that you always keep a sequential journal entry of all notarial transactions.

What if you are sued?
Unfortunately, as a notary, if you are sued for fraud, or being involved with fraud, you could lose $20,000 in legal expenses only to be proven innocent. You lose, even if you win. E&O insurance won’t protect you if you are not at fault. So, if you are falsely accused because someone else did fraud including a seal forger, a corrupt Title Officer, or someone else, you can get in big trouble. It is best to try to reason with the plaintiff and prove to them through whatever evidence that you have that you are not one of the parties to be blamed. You can also tell them that you will counter sue for legal expenses and time lost if proven not guilty.

Identifying the fraud
One of the issues in catching a fraudulent impostor notary is that they are hard to catch. The only people who have seen them would be notary customers. Those customers would have found the person’s number online or in the yellow pages or through a referral. Notary clients very rarely check the ID of the notary, so the notary could be an impostor and get away with it for a while without being caught. But, why would an impostor notarize many people. Chances are that the impostor notary would be well acquainted with the individual who forged loan documents, or could be the same person which means that nobody would see him or catch him. If he forged the signature of the borrower as well, then it gets very complicated. Three forgeries in one! If they forge a notary seal, the forged seal might have the name of a real notary on it. In such a case, the real notary would be able to prove through his journal that he never notarized that forged document. Additionally, the forger would have to not only forge the signature of the borrower, but also of that particular notary which would require quite some skill. I always used an embosser that left a raised seal in the document. A fraud would have to be pretty clever to forge my seal and my embosser and use it like I did — and in the one case where my seal was forged, they didn’t have the brains to do it correctly and got caught (but, not necessarily prosecuted – or at least I was not informed of what happened after the fact.)


December 15, 2014

You’re Unique, You Don’t SAY (in your 123notary notes section)

Filed under: Ken Edelstein,Your Notes Section — Tags: — admin @ 2:55 am

You’re Unique, You Don’t SAY (in your 123notary notes section)
I can prove you are unique, it’s easy. I do fingerprinting. And while the statistic is that two people in six billion might classify the same; their fingerprints will be unique. There are some practical limitations to classifying fingerprints. So where am I going with this? My whimsical first thought was to have Jeremy modify the notes section to allow uploading a fingerprint image. Then, at last, the vast majority of member notes would have something truly unique.

First, I’m going to discuss the problem; somewhat briefly. Take about fifteen minutes; randomly roam around the country. Read a dozen or so notes sections. Soon you might come to the conclusion that they were written by the same person. Tired platitudes ring hollow, “reliable, dependable, responsible, friendly, professional”; the list is long and repetitions abound. Now picture yourself on the other side. You are reading the notes sections trying to decide who to call. After reading a few you can’t differentiate the notes of Sally from the notes of Fred.

The problem is that the writers are using the terms and accolades that should be in their reviews, as written by their clients. They are not talking about themselves, what they are doing is self praise; not self description. As example: “I do perfect signings”. The writer took “Chin did a perfect signing” and, with just a variation of author; made a (hoped for) client comment into self praise. Chin has to earn that comment, not bestow it upon himself.
So, if we are going to drop the BS, what should we write about? It’s as plain as that unique nose on your face! Write, in your notes section about yourself, and what makes you unique. It’s trite and overused to say “I’m dependable”; but there is a way to convey that image; and that’s what rings the bell. “I was raised in a military family with a rich heritage of responsibility and honor”. “My parents insisted I do my personal best in everything I do”. You’re not going find that unique self description often.

Sure, you can give the statistics, accomplishments and such; but what will stick in their mind is a true person to person reflection upon yourself. Some of you are probably horrified at the thought of letting your “shields” down. Well, it’s not a no holds barred question and answer session. You are totally in control of your notes section and can write, within reason; whatever you want. Your best shot at standing out from the crowd is to make a positive, lasting, impression. “You will know I have arrived by the immaculate and highly shined car in front of your house”; I’m sure you can do better; but it does present you as being meticulous, without using that word specifically.
Your uniqueness goes beyond your fingertips. You need to add a bit of you to your notes. The more you and the less “worn out phrases” the better. “When I bought my house the process was terrifying; I relate to the borrowers having been there”. Sure, it’s still selling; but, it’s not just stringing along a bunch of terms and high self adoration. Your background, experiences, upbringing, ethics and a whole lot more – define you. The artful part is blending some you with some what you can do, have done; and are genuinely good at. It does not hurt to mention that you enjoy it too. Take the time to really communicate with, not just to, your reader. For many reasons the site does not use pictures; which only show the superficial anyway. It is only with your words, open and honest; that you can project your uniqueness and that you are the one for the job.


December 13, 2014

Dec: Out of biz signing companies (D-E)

Filed under: Signing Company Gossip — Tags: — admin @ 5:03 am

These signing companies were removed from our list of signing companies because they have not been commented on for four years.

D&M United Notaries Colorado


Deluxe Mobile Notary

Diversified Settlement Services

Doc it to me
No forum posts

Doc Pro, Irvine
No forum posts

Doc Pros Mobile Notary, LLC
No forum posts

Docs on the Run

No forum posts


Dynamic Settlement Services


East Coast Settlements

eCom Title Agency

Eleventh Hour Signings

Empire Signing Solutions
No forum


Escrow Quick

ESS Network

E-Title Agency

Evolve IT

Express Financial Services

EZ Notary
No forum post

EZ Signing Service


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