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April 1, 2019

Why Is It Worthwhile to Notarize a Will?

Filed under: Other Guest Bloggers — Tags: — admin @ 8:16 am

Why Is It Worthwhile to Notarize a Will?
Notarization is also known as notarial acts. This is a three party process conducted by a notary public which includes record keeping, vetting and certifying. This is the official procedure taken to prevent fraud and also assure parties in the transaction that the document, in this case, the will being notarized is authentic. Not only the will but banking transactions documents should be notarized too.

By signing a will, one specifies how they want their property distributed after their death. This process is called probate. Whereas some states do not necessarily require notarization of wills, notarizing a will might speed up the probate speed. The question you and I might be having is, why is it worthwhile to notarize a will? Let us explore.

In most countries, a notary is carried out by a notary public who in this case acts as an eyewitness in discharging restrictive fraud activities connected to your will. There is also an act that governs such duties. He can direct oaths and witness swearing by deponents for affidavits. It is also believed that a notary can also act as an arbitrator.

Who Is Supposed To Notarize?
Notarization can be conducted by a practicing lawyer who has experience of at least 7 to 10 years. Also, an individual who has served as a judicial service member or has served under central or state government and whose position required specialized knowledge of the law is also qualified to become a notary.

Benefits of Notarizing a Will
Prevents future frauds and identity theft
George Sink urges that a notarized will help to verify that you are the one signing your will. This will help you, the owner from future frauds or identity theft in such a way that no one else can present or produce a forged will.

Notarizing your will prevents the owner from unpredictable fraud cases. This is because regardless of what the other party produces, your notarized will affirms you as the sole owner and that, can never be challenged.

Notarizing your will furthermore affirm to the fact that all the signatories are real and authentic. It also shows that genuine people signed them and that the will itself is not fabricated.

Helps Protect the rights of the will
A notarized will which has been fully certified by a notary public also aids in protecting the rights of the will. Furthermore, to avoid further and possible court proceedings, it is rather advisable for individuals to notarize their will.

Prevent court rejections
In some cases, notarizing a will is mandatory. Some lawyers argue that if you do not notarize your will, its validity in future might be questioned which might even lead to court rejections, in case there is a case and your will has to be produced. To avoid all this unfolding saga, it is advisable to notarize wills early enough.

The signatories do not necessarily have to testify in court
Another reason why notarizing your will is worthwhile is the fact that the signatories do not necessarily have to testify in court to authenticate their signatures. This saves a lot of money and time from both parties. Notarizing your will, therefore, serve as an enormous strategic advantage in the lawsuit.

Conclusion
We have discussed throughout the article what notarization is, who executes it and why is it a suitable procedure. All we can say is that notarizing your will is just a formality that should be implemented when signing your will. A notarized will assures the legal authenticity of an individual’s signature and identity whereas without doing so, a person cannot claim ownership of that particular will; therefore, notarization of a will is crucial.

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Compilation of best posts by guest bloggers

Filed under: Guest Bloggers — admin @ 7:43 am

Here are our best posts by guest bloggers

WRITTEN IN CONJUNCTION WITH ANDY COWAN

Trump – Making American Notaries Great Again
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=17023

Introducing the 2019 Notaries!
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21147

A Notary goes Public on Shark Tank with Shazamdocs!
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18943

Comedic Notary Pricing from Apo-steal-of-a-deal to Zilch (not getting paid)
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18941

MY BIG PHAT GEEK WEDDING
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=17053

Shark Tank – Notary Escrow Pal
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=16009

A Seinfeld Episode About a Notary
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=10208

CARMEN’S POSTS

Attorney’s bullying Notaries – when does it end?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19383

SnapDocs, who is it and what is it?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19333

#1 Notary Error
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18956

Please answer your phones and check those emails
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21274

My stolen identity and the fraudulent notary seal
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20753

Oath, what Oath?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19628

Lets stop undercutting each other
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19381

Please don’t quit your day job just yet
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19385

Million Dollar E&O?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19336

KEN EDELSTEIN

A job declined
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19979

Notary for a USA presidential candidate
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19148

Notary of the future
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18952

Get the special jobs
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19106

Notary email tools
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19150

Now is the right time to become a signing agent
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21039

Are you practicing law by drawing a signature line?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21033

Do a half fast embossing
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19981

The automatic repayment form
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19708

My reply to a vague incoming email
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19704

Ken’s list of things Notaries goof on
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19427

Which statement is a true statement?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19421

Notary also a witness
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19415

A call from a cop
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19410

Get off your butt
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19408

Initial notary contact check list
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19423

When you are in a hole – stop digging
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19340

My next notary visit is free
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19298

The Power of Attorney was rejected
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18954

When you really don’t wanna take the job
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18962

Unsubscribe
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19031

Power of Attorney Notary Processing Mistakes
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19031

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March 24, 2019

So the Mobile Notary Well has gone Dry

Filed under: Ken Edelstein — Tags: , — admin @ 2:51 am

I usually don’t date my scribbles. Rather, I try to write what I perceive to be “eternal” truths. Wow, that sounded pompous; even for me. Well today is March 11, 2019, and the calls are down. Not “down and out”, but significantly lower than a few months ago. I don’t know or care about your political leaning; and I’m certainly not going to share mine. Though it probably would result in some interesting comments!

What to do when the well has gone dry? Basically there are only two real options. Ya dig another well or move on to where water is plentiful. If you can think of a practical and creative third alternative please enter some constructive and informative criticism of my analysis.

Dig another Well

Very few of us are likely able to provide “revenue for a family” from mobile notary revenue. I’m not talking about the “higher ups” who get a slice of many pies. I’m referring to the “rank and file”, the troops in the field who actually stamp, emboss, administer the oath and sign. We are legions of “side gig” entrepreneurs eking out a modest supplemental income. I suspect many of us are retired and use the signing fee for a modest night out. Probably a goodly number are youth who eagerly expend major effort, using their endless energy for usually small rewards.

There are many ways to dig that supplementary well. You can knock yourself out distributing business cards and seek the direct calls. Some will take the gamble and pay highly per click. Many will up their visibility by seeking better placement on notary directories. But, as I see it; these strategies, while valid; are chasing the limited demand. Being different, or more accurately, doing different IS digging another well.

Most mobile notaries run their business the same way; no matter what. I have had emails that state “I enjoy processing loan packages and don’t want to do anything else”. OK, you have chosen to starve, certainly in the current notary signing agent environment. Diversify is the word. You have to use your notary standing to offer to do many things. Learn to do fingerprinting, to process Apostilles, Letters of Protest, obtaining birth, death, marriage, divorce and how to work with educational documents. There are many other “authorities” granted to you by your status as a notary. The more you know how to do, the greater your chances someone will hire you.

Move on to the Water

Your status as a notary is an “edge” you have making you more desirable in many functions. Of course you should still market yourself as a mobile notary – great extra income when it fits into your schedule. But, quite frankly it’s not a gold mine currently. That may change – but probably not soon. So, take a real job; one where your notary skills can be an advantage. Use some of the “real job” revenue to maintain your current advertising and directory listings. I can picture some rural lawn signs: “Notary Public and lawnmower blade sharpening”. IM(not so)HO probably the worst thing you can do is chase the 35 dollar edocs. Do the math; there is virtually no profit. Face the reality, be flexible, ADD a few additional skills; notary skills – of course; but don’t limit yourself to solely notary income. When you dig that new well you just might strike oil!

You might also like:

Snapdocs — are the jobs just too far away?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21003

The art of the decline to new jobs
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=15783

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March 14, 2019

Blog topics based on customer feedback…

Filed under: Carmen Towles — admin @ 9:34 am

1. Hello,
I wanted to ask here in Texas is there a penalty for a notary public who can sign off on a document with out the whole document even being filled out?

Jeremy’s answer
It is not legal for a Notary to notarize a document with any blanks in it.

2. Who do I report this to? The office manager is signing her own name to the notary space on customs forms. We sell to overseas clients and our customs forms have a space where a notary is suppose to certify what is in the package. The office manager says she can’t be bothered and signs her own name. She is not a notary. Who does this get reported to? Thanks
Comment by Pamela — March 20, 2018 @ 9:49 pm

Jeremy’s Answer
Please report this person to the FBI and the Secretary of State Notary division. Forgery is a serious crime and can be very harmful to society.

3. A notary with an oil/gas company in Ohio notarized my signature, backdating it for a year prior when my name was different. I never met with him, either, so he notarized my signature w/o verifying who I am. The document he notarized was not the document I was told I was signing. I was in another state working when he claims to have certified this doc, and it was dated to coincide with a lease document that our neighbors signed.
Comment by Sherry Zebley — September 4, 2016 @ 1:29 am

Jeremy’s Comment
Please report this person to the Secretary of State’s office. Additionally, you can ask an Attorney to check this Notary’s journal to see if your signature is in his journal. If not, then he has no proof he notarized you on a particular date.

4. I’m in California where I’ve learned very few notaries issue an oath for jurats and it’s not being enforced whatsoever. All clients tell me “no one’s ever asked me to take an oath before” including attorneys. They all look shocked when I take an oath. I’ve witnessed several experienced notaries fail to take my oath for jurats. My guess is that perhaps 5% perform oath’s for jurats in California.

Comment by notaryslife — December 28, 2011 @ 1:45 am

I totally agree with you notaryslife. I hear that same statement over and over again – “No one has ever put me under oath before.” It really makes me wonder where these notaries were trained and how they ever passed the notary exam.

Comment by Rebecca Ruben — January 3, 2012 @ 7:10 pm

Jeremy’s Comment:
It is not only fraud and perhaps perjury for a Notary to sign a Jurat form without administering an Oath, but it nullifies the notarization on a document and can nullify a loan signing as well if a judge ever finds out about what happened — or what didn’t happen. Oaths are required by law and all Notaries should take Oaths seriously or be thrown in the lion’s den.

5. I live in California and two separate notaries signed two separate real properties but the notaries never turned their books in 11 years later and I am fighting my father’s probate. I have called the police detective and nobody will arrest them. What is my recourse as I know that my father never signed these books as the homes were stolen from me by my stepmother and sister. Help!!!

Jeremy’s Comment
California has the most uncooperative law enforcement I have ever seen. They are always there to be rude to you but rarely there to do anything of value to society. Contact the FBI and Secretary of State’s office on this one.

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November 21, 2018

12 questions to ask for hospital notarizations

SAFETY TIPS AND 12 QUESTIONS TO ASK FOR HOSPITAL NOTARIZATIONS:
I get calls frequently for Notarizations in Jails and Hospitals.
This blog will focus on things you must do to protect yourself from lawsuits and damages when you get a desperate call to go out to a hospital to notarize documents to be signed by a patient, moistly a Power of Attorney. The phone call invariably comes from the child who has a parent admitted to the hospital.
What do you do as the Notary when the person calling says they will pay you whatever you charge as your mobile fee? Remember Rule #1: It is not always about the money. It is about your ability to follow the Notary laws and perform your job without taking short cuts.
The following list of questions is a short summary of the steps I have actually taken when I got such a call.

1. What is your relationship to the patient?
2. Do you have any other siblings or relatives who have a beneficial interest in the transaction?
3. Is the patient conscious? Coherent? On any medication?
4. Does the patient have a current valid ID with him or can you make it available when the notary arrives at the hospital?
5. Is the patient able to sign his name without any help?
6. Does the patient speak English and can he understand and answer simple questions coherently?
7. Does the patient have an attending physician and a Nurse assigned to him?
8. Do you have the number to the attending physician and nurse because I need to talk to them to get an accurate idea of the health and overall condition of the patient?
9. When can I talk to the patient directly by phone with a nurse present in the room?
10. What type of document are you having notarized?
11. What dates and times work for the patient?
12. My mobile fees are _____ and $15/signature notarized. After I get there if I make the determination that the person is unable to understand anything I ask him or is being forced to sign, I will not be able to notarize the document but will still charge you my mobile fee for coming out based on your representations over the phone. Are you okay with that because I don’t want to get into any arguments after I get there?

Believe me there has been more than one occasion I can recall where I had to leave without notarizing a document because the patient was unable to understand anything I asked, was incoherent and simply could not sign or even hold a pen to just mark an “X”. It is better to walk away from a Notarization where you know instinctively that it is wrong because the signer is not aware of what he is signing and inevitably you will end up being a party to a litigation by interested parties who believe that the Notary failed to take into account the coherence and soundness of mind of the signer at the time of the Notarization. This would invalidate your notarization and worse yet force you to pay legal expenses to defend yourself. Is it worth it? Absolutely not!

.

You might also like:

The carrot, the stick, the notary, and the bag
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=3951

When to ask for ID over the phone & fees at the door
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=15282

A tale of four notaries at hospitals
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=463

Hospital Notary jobs from A to Z
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=76

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October 29, 2018

Fix for – Your Phone Stopped Ringing

Filed under: Ken Edelstein — admin @ 12:28 pm

Fix for – Your Phone Stopped Ringing
To understand why it’s not ringing you need to understand what makes it ring. Calls come from three basic origins. Repeats, Advertising, and “where you are known”. Repeats are great, and you will have them if you did a good job for a fair price. People like to deal with a known entity – especially when the prior work was great. Ads cost money, but wisely done have a good ROI
(Return On Investment). However “ads” can be free – the following link: http://kenneth-aedelstein.com

will be “picked up” by many internet “robots” – including Google. It costs noting to
post a blog, just some time to create content that is worth the readers’ time.

Now on to “where you are known”. I have often suggested the distribution of several hundred business cards. Sure, it’s work – but has the advantage of making a good face to face impression. Well, to be honest it can take a lot of low result legwork. But, it can also be done with a strategy for low effort and high return. One good potential future caller source is doctors. They often need their statement about a patient’s health notarized. You could plan a route to cover 50 doctors in one trip. It would be an inefficient plan. Sure you would leave a card (and perhaps a brief letter about your services) with the doctors; but the narrow focus would miss other potential clients – in the same building.

A better, perhaps more efficient approach would be to visit an area. Doctors might be prime candidates – but the hardware store adjacent to the doctor should also receive a visit. Think of everyone as a potential client – why not visit an many as possible, as efficiently as possible?

This is a very generalized approach. It works for notaries, realtors or plumbers. They might not need you now, but might require your type of service in the future. Can you picture them thinking “now where did I put that card” – I vaguely recall that person seemed competent.

Don’t feel like making a special card distribution trip? You don’t have to. Just be sure to carry about 50+ cards with you at all times and distribute them where you go, and to places nearby.

It’s a numbers game – the cost is very low, and to be frank – the response rate is also low; initially. But some will call, perhaps becoming repeat customers. Unlike the hated “spam” email, you are delivering your card personally; perhaps starting a relationship.

One final tip. Be sure to use the back of the card to make your card a “keeper”. I have a street guide to finding buildings in Manhattan. Some have conversion charts between English and Metric measurement, some Federal holidays. Whatever you choose make it a “long term” keep. Probably the worst is a calendar – into the trash you go on New Year’s Day.

.

You might also like:

Notary – what would you do?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21037

Situations where you can ruin a loan out of stupidity
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19987

A list of things Notaries goor (or might goof on).
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19427

Life at the bottom of the food chain
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19419

Get off your butt — and start marketing yourself
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19408

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October 8, 2018

A interesting take on ‘communicating’ with the signer…

Filed under: Carmen Towles — admin @ 11:36 am

In some states, in order to notarize a document in addition to a personal appearance and having current government issued ID you must also be able to communicate with the signer. This applies to us here in California and in addition, we are forbidden to use an interpreter/translator. Unfortunately for me, it has cost me several jobs because although I have a Spanish name, I do not speak a lick of Spanish. 🙁 This has been very disastrous to me. I live an a predominately Asian and Latino community and I estimate that it has cost me at least 30% of my business. I wish I had listened to my mother. She always told me to learn Spanish and learn to type. Of course I didn’t listen, lol. Alternatively, however, due to technology there may be a resolution to my (and others) dilemma when notarizing for a person who speaks another language.

I was speaking with a friend and notary colleague and this topic came up. In the conversation, he mentioned that there was another way, that may solve our problem and that he had been using it effectively. He told me that Google translate was great and that it works very well. And that it was a little different in its implication as compared to a live translator. I have an iPhone, so I immediately downloaded it and I can tell you it is fantastic. It is super easy to use and It translates all languages and as far as I can tell it is 100% accurate. To test it out, I asked in English; “Do you understand the document that you are signing”? Do you know that you are giving your daughter power of attorney over all your affairs? It then translated it into Spanish and speaks it out loud for both parties to hear and it will record their response (as well as yours) in writing. You can set it to have a back and forth conversation with a written record. You can understand them and they can understand you. I just LOVE this. It has the potential to solve a big problem for those of us that must be able to communicate with the signer.

Now what I am wondering, will the Secretary of State accept this method to satisfy the ‘communication requirement’? It is like using a translator, isn’t it? Personally though, I think it is a little different because I can personally ask the questions in English and It will translate in their language. With a translator they are asking all the questions and having a back and forth with the signer whereas if we don’t speak the language we have no idea whats been said other than what the translator relays back to us, which may be truthful or not. When using google translate, the notary can control everything and can have a back and forth conversation. All parties can read, hear and record the conversation, but the SOS will have the final say. As of writing this blog, I have not asked them but plan on calling them in the near future to find out their take on it. In the mean time, I was curious what some of you felt about this. Let me know in the comments section below.

.

You might also like:

How do I get a foreign language document notarized?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18788

Is it better to be “bilingual” or speak Spanish?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19264

Where can I find a Spanish speaking Notary?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18824

Index of posts about documents
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20258

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September 29, 2018

Now is the Right Time to become a Notary / Signing Agent

Filed under: Ken Edelstein — admin @ 11:19 am

Now is the Right Time to become a Notary / Signing Agent

Sounds strange? You think the business is dying? Sure, at the moment things are slow. But, I forecast a booming future for the industry. There are many positive signs:

Baby Boomers Getting Out

The “old guard” of “seasoned” experts, born in the 40s are collecting Social Security or looking at the daisies from the root end. It’s time for the next generation. No doubt about it. They (and I) are “slowing down” and less willing to take on the pressure and rush aspects required to earn top fees. They disappear slowly, as their cells phones are unanswered; clients look for new solutions.

Cost of Entry is getting Lower

The tool set required by the modern Notary / Signing Agent is lower than in the past. Cell costs are very low with unlimited plans common. Sure, very fancy phones are super costly; but they are not necessary. As long as it can make and receive voice, text and email – it’s good enough. The cost of printers has fallen dramatically, HP Laserjet is still the benchmark, mine is a totally reconditioned 4350n (network “Ethernet” or WiFi) with duplexer for under $500. A separate FAX machine is unnecessary as Efax service for about ten bucks a month allows a PDF to be “sent as FAX” from any internet connected PC.

The Economy is on the Rise

I’m not going into a political discussion. But it’s hard to argue that personal wealth is not on the rise. This leads to more home ownership and other notary service needs. The “well rounded” notary; comfortable with Edocs and a variety of personal documents that require notarization will flourish. Case in point: I have noticed a great uptick in persons obtaining passports for their children for vacation purposes. Often only one parent can submit; with the notarized signature on the application of the other parent. I am getting LOTS of these lately.

Training is Readily Available

In addition to your state “rule book” many offer advanced classes and training. This was not so easy to obtain a few decades ago. Related to training is obtaining certifications as to your skill level. These “advanced degrees” draw clients to you like a magnet. A few hours a day, two or three for a couple of weeks can really advance your skill level. The big notary sites have blogs which are rich in real how to do information. Also read the “what not to do” equally important.

It’s not “Instant” Riches

Understand that your business, like any other business will grow slowly, At first it’s just some extra pocket money for a night out. Don’t quit your day job until you have a “critical mass” of repeat clients. Don’t forget to distribute your business card widely, perhaps with a cover letter about you and your services. Carry a well stocked “kit” of supplies, forms, embossers and stamps to meet any request. Your Notary Commission can and will yield the results you want; if you are willing to put the appropriate amount of effort into becoming the most skilled in your area.

You might also like:

How to become a successful mobile notary from scratch
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=13340

How does pricing work for top placements on 123notary?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19355

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September 15, 2018

Please answer your phones and check those emails..

Filed under: Carmen Towles — admin @ 11:34 am

I am sure most of you have heard the old adage,’You snooze you loose.’ I can tell you with this business (or any other business) it rings true.

As most of you know, I too am a notary/signing agent. I have advertising in many different places and in may different forms. There is 123notary, Notary Rotary and Notary Cafe just to name a few. However for the record, most of my loan, real estate transactions come from 123notary.com. But no matter where they originate, I can tell you from first hand experience that if you don’t pay close attention to your email, texts and phone messages you could be losing potential work which translates into lost revenue. And it could be allot of it.

Many years ago, for the most part Title, Escrow, Brokers, Realtors etc use to call you direct. And if you didn’t answer your phone you could be losing valuable clients (and of course money) to your competition. Most times, if they left a message and you didnt return the call back within a matter of minutes they would have found someone else. You see they would never stop calling, until they got a live body to accept their assignments. But, I have noticed a new trend here lately-they seem to email more frequently rather than call. I estimate a staggering 35-40% more. I believe that for them emailing has become more efficient and more convenient.

Sadly, I have lost 2 jobs with 2 title companies in the last week (as the writing of this blog) because I was way to slow to respond to the emails. By the time, I had gotten back to them they had, unfortunately, found someone else. I also had one text me the other day after she didn’t get a response to her email. So she had decided to text to get my attention. Thankfully, for me, she uses me on a regular basis so there was no immediate fear of me losing the assignment. But of course that will not always be the case, so I will need to be more diglient from this point on checking the emails more frequently. (and yes, I am notified with a chime on my phone but if I dont hear it or I am busy it doesn’t do me any good) I need to check them more frequently. And perhaps you do to…

Which brings me to another point. I have way to much junk/spam mail in my inbox. It is time to just use a dedicated email. One that is only dedicated to notary inquiries and/or requests for service. I truly believe that I am being distracted with way too many insignificant emails that I am missing the ones that I really need to be focused on and need to respond to in a timely fashion. It is clear that I am losing work! So if any of you find yourself in my position then it may just be time for a email cleanup. It is way to competitive and slow to miss ANY potential work.

You might also like:

Compilation of posts about notary etiquette
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20505

Best virtual notary comedy posts updated to 2018
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=17693

How can new notaries survive without reviews?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20057

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September 14, 2018

Why you REALLY need to know your profession and have thick skin…..

Filed under: Carmen Towles — admin @ 11:33 am

When speaking with notaries, I tell them all the time that they need to have tough skin, and that they need to know their stuff (meaning your state notary laws). Here is a recent example of why it is so important.

A few days back, I got a call from a law firm in Canada. She stated that she had ONE document to be notarized. We discussed the assignment and she told me what she needed and we agreed on a fee. She immediately followed up at my request with a confirmation email in which she cc’d the signer and I was given the, time, place, conformation of my negotiated fee and contact information. I met the signer at her home. She produced a bundle of documents and laid them on the table. As I go through them, I notice right away that there was at least 20 additional documents that seemed to require an oath with notary signature and seal but oddly there are no signature lines for the signer. Red flags immediately go up. I let the signer know this is not customary and that we needed to call the attorney for further instructions.

We reached the attorney (surprisingly) and she said that there is only one signature to be notarized and the other jurats just require MY signature. I explain that this is not customary, and I just can’t ‘sign’ these. I ask her what would the purpose of me signing as they are just Jurat words stamped on the document with NO signature lines for the signer to sign at all. She goes on to tell me that I am signing that the signer has reviewed each of these documents and to their truthfulness. I tell her, I cannot accommodate her request as it is improper and illegal. I go on and further explain to her that a notaries only function is to verify identity and signature on a document and when required, administer an oath to the truthfulness of the document they (the signer) are signing. You can tell she is beginning to get very annoyed with me. After all she is the attorney (like that means anything to me) and tells me notaries do these all over the country with NO problem and I am the first to refuse (so now of course, I am the bad guy and trouble maker). I tell her that I can’t speak for any of the other notaries but if they are doing these it is illegal. I also tell her that if the Secretary of State was open (it was after 6) I could prove to her (and the signer) that this would be improper and illegal for me to do and I could loose my commission. It is obvious the attorney doesn’t care in the least and still insists and tries to connivence me to do as she requests.

At this point I am getting VERY angry. I know my job very well and I certainly don’t like to be talked down to or bullied. So, I turn to the signer and I say; “I am sorry, I am not trying to be difficult but I cannot do as the attorney requests, I will notarize the one document as agreed, you can pay me and I’ll be on my way. Then the attorney can find one of those many notaries she claims signs off on these with no problem.” The signer says no, “I want to get this over with. Can you make this work?, What do we have to do?.” I tell her, “You will need to write a little statement of your choice on each document that has the jurat wording (which I also have to cross out and use California compliant verbage), then sign, and I’ll give you the oath, then I can notarize each document”. But, I tell her it will be expensive and that each of these is 15.00. Long story short. I make a deal with her so it didn’t cost her too much more than we originally agreed, just to get through it. I also never wanted the signer to think I was trying to get allot more money out of her.

As you can see it was a hot mess. However, I got through it. But fellow notaries a word of caution; please learn your profession. Know your job; cold. Know what you can and cannot do in YOUR state. Don’t let anyone tell you what other notaries are doing so they can get their way. The have THIER best interest at heart NOT YOURS. You should ALWAYS know what is appropriate for each situation. If other notaries have been knowingly, unknowingly (or bullied) into doing what was being asked of me to do, I would not have had such a problem. These type of situations makes us ALL look bad…

Remember this is not a ‘California’ thing. It is a notary thing. You just don’t sign your name to a Jurat willy-nilly just because the hiring party says so. You must follow proper notary procedure. Period.

Thanks for reading, and I’d love to hear your feedback…

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