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April 30, 2019

Power of Attorney in Jail or Prison

Filed under: Hospital & Jail Signings — admin @ 10:11 am

Power of Attorney in Jail or Prison

The most common documents to be signed in a jail are title documents to cars, or power of attorney documents. Please be advised that a Notary may not draft or give advice on documents unless they are authorized to do so by also being an Attorney, or in a legal support profession that is authorized to give legal advice. I do know personally know who other than Attorneys can draft documents, so ask an Attorney.

Many banks have their own power of Attorney forms. So, please be sure you are having the inmate sign the correct power of attorney that will be acceptable to your bank or whomever the document custodian is.

As always, please consult an Attorney before you decide which type of legal document to use, or draft a legal document such as a Power of Attorney.

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April 29, 2019

Identification for prison notarizations

Filed under: Hospital & Jail Signings — admin @ 10:06 am

Identification for prison notarizations

1. Inmate ID Cards
In Florida and California, there is such thing as inmate ID cards or an inmate identification card. These are issued by the Department of Justice of Bureau of Federal Prisons.

2. Wristbands
In other states, sometimes the Notary can use a wristband. But, that is subject to the laws of your state, so you will have to consult your state’s notary manual online.

3. Credible Witnesses
Credible Witnesses may be used to identify a person in many states. You need to ask the Notary Public who you intend to use what the rules are in your state for Credible Identifying Witnesses. Many states will allow two individuals who know the signer to vouch for the identity of the signer under Oath before a Notary Public and will allow this as a substitute for having proper identification.

4. Regular Identification Cards
Ideally, if you can find a current identification of the signer and bring it with you to the jail, this will make it a lot easier for the Notary to notarize the signer.

5. Guards
Guards at jails are normally helpful about passing the journal through the slit in the glass to the signer. However, they very rarely want to be involved in identifying inmates as a credible witness.

6. Thumbprinting
It is generally a good idea to thumbprint signers in the notary journal. Most Notaries do not do this, but it is prudent as you cannot fake a thumbprint and it is forensic evidence that can be used to prove the identity of the signer if the signing is ever investigated.

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April 20, 2019

Payment for Jail Notary Service

Filed under: Hospital & Jail Signings — admin @ 10:10 am

Payment for Jail Notary Service

Not all Notaries are experience at jail notarizations. It is recommended that they get an up front travel fee when they meet you. They should also charge for waiting time incrementally as well as for the notarizations. The fee for the actual notary work should be paid after the notary work is done while the other fees paid up front or during the waiting time which can be unpredictable at jails.

Additionally, it is recommended that if you are meeting a notary at a jail, you have a mobile phone and keep in contact with the Notary. It is common for clients to stand Notaries up at jails, so make sure the notary knows that you are serious about doing business and that you won’t be late.

Also, make sure all parties know where to park, and have directions going where they are going.

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April 12, 2019

Jail Notarization Issues

Filed under: Hospital & Jail Signings — admin @ 10:05 am

For those of you who need a Notary to visit an inmate at a jail, penitentiary, detention center or correctional facility, there are many issues at hand. I will try to explain those issues in an organized way in this informational article.

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Identification for Prison Notarizations – http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22139
Lockdowns and inmate considerations – http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22142
Payment for Mobile Notary Service – http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22145
Personal Appearance of Signer – http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22148
Power of Attorney Documents – http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22151

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We also have other articles about jail signings.

Find a notary who can notarize an inmate
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21349

Notarization done at a jail rejected by police
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=17484

7 steps for jail notarizations
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=8634

Notarizing an arsonist at a jail
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=650

.

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April 10, 2019

Lock downs and Prison Notarizations

Filed under: Hospital & Jail Signings — admin @ 10:09 am

Lock downs and Prison Notarizations

It is common for jails to have lock downs. If you are meeting a Notary Public at a jail and there is a lock down, it is possible that your appointment will be cancelled. It is also possible that you will be held against your will in the building as long as the lock down lasts.

If you are going to be part of a jail notarization, there are several things you need to know.

1. Is the jail under lock down? You might call before you go. Lock downs can happen at the last minute, but if you call ahead of time, that decreases your chance of having a ruined appointment.

2. The prisoner may have been moved to another cell, cell block, or jail entirely. That will ruin your notary appointment as well.

3. The prisoner may not be willing to sign a particular document. If you go all the way to a jail only to find that the signer refuses to sign, you just wasted your time and so did the notary.

4. Waiting for guards. If you go to a jail, each jail has a different procedure for letting visitors in. Most allow Notaries in, however, the notary may be asked to stamp a blank piece of paper so that the jail has a record of the notary seal. Others who wish to visit in a jail might be allowed if they are going to be a credible witness, but explaining that to the jail staff might require a little skill, and it may or may not be allowed. So, check in advance. Step one is to get let in the jail and to know what area of the jail to go to. It is normal for the guards to search Notaries carefully, so be ready for that. Next, you have to ask for a guard to come. Once the guard comes, they can bring the correct prisoner in front of you in the area with the glass partitions. You will need the guard to pass the journal back and forth through the glass and inspect the pens and whatever else you send over.

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April 8, 2019

Personal Appearance for jail signings

Filed under: Hospital & Jail Signings — admin @ 10:11 am

Personal Appearance for jail signings

Jails have some unusual practices and practices vary from jail to jail. At one jail, I was not allowed within 50 feet of the inmate. I told them that I could not notarize as personal appearance was necessary. You can see a notary through a glass and communicate with them through a phone. That is fine. You can be sitting next to the inmate as a notary and that is okay. But, if you are so far away that you cannot visually see who they are and what they look like, then it is not legal to notarize that person. Personal appearance is normally required for Notary acts other than a proof of execution which is hardly ever done and probably not allowed for documents such as power of attorneys.

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April 7, 2019

Inmate Identification Cards

For years, it has been difficult for Notaries to notarize inmates in jail or prison due to the fact that their wristband did not constitute an identification acceptable to many states. The problem has been solved in California and Florida.

California has an inmate identification card
A California Notary may accept an inmate identification card issues by the state Department of Correction and Rehabilitation.

Florida also has an inmate identification card
Florida allows Notaries to accept inmate ID cards issued by the U.S. Department of Justice or Bureau of Federal Prisons.

These forms of identification are reported to be acceptable for use by Notaries Public in their respective states. It would be nice if the other states would come up to speed as well and provide a legal means for identifying inmates.

California inmate identification card
California inmate ID card
Florida inmate identification card
Florida inmate ID card
Can you notarize an inmate with a wristband identification?
How do you identify an inmate in prison or jail?

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March 19, 2019

Is it a Federal crime to make a photocopy of a military ID card?

Filed under: Technical & Legal — admin @ 9:56 am

I have heard that it is illegal to make a copy of a military identification card.
As a notary, you are not responsible for making copies as a general rule. Be especially cautious and vigelent with Military ID’s. We don’t want you getting in trouble.

Forum discussion on the topic.
http://www.123notary.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=7249

Copying Miltary ID – is it allowed?
https://www.cbancnetwork.com/questions/view/2eb342a0-9c2e-43ec-b544-118859fad5a8?title=Copying%20Military%20ID-%20Is%20it%20Allowed?

DoDLive Link
http://www.dodlive.mil/2017/05/11/did-you-know-photocopying-a-government-id-is-illegal/

Notary Public 101 — Identification
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19507

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March 9, 2019

Why You Shouldn’t Use an Online Notary

Filed under: Technical & Legal — admin @ 9:30 am

Here we cover six important reasons for NOT using an online notary public.

We’re living in an era driven by technological advancements. Today, people are willing to use YouTube as a babysitter and tablets as their kids’ companions. Be it engaging games, interactive tools for education or workflow productivity, technology always lends a helping hand but this gives rise to a few questions: Does technology really help us? Does technology need to disrupt everything? How deep into our personal affairs should we let technology creep?

Here we cover six important reasons for NOT using an online notary public:

Far Less Secure than In-Person
Lack of personal appearance defeats the purpose of notarization. Period. How can a notary properly identify someone in the world of AI when they appear on a computer screen? Audio/Video can be made from anywhere through any means. As I write this article, I did a simple Google search for “video overlay app” and about 152 Million results popped up with detailed instructions.

Huge Potential for Fraud
Here’s the dirty secret that online notaries don’t want you to know. Online notary companies require you to upload a copy of your documents so that they can place their seal on them, you then download your “notarized” documents and print them out. But guess what? A copy of your most important legal documents are now somewhere on the online notary’s datacenter just waiting for a hacker to harvest them. And we all hear the same news story almost weekly, “XYC Company has had their data breached and millions of users data was compromised.” What if you were named the beneficiary in your late relatives estate documents that were notarized by an online notary, but all of a sudden, someone else shows up in court with a copy of those same documents but with their name on them as the beneficiary?!?!

Huge Potential for Identity Theft
Internet security is another big one. If you don’t have huge secure data servers processing the data you’re uploading to the online notary, your personal information (ie. your ID credentials and documents) are being thrown out onto the World Wide Web without recourse. Once that data is internet bound, there is no coming back from a potential cyber attack.

It Costs More
In the State of California, notaries may charge a fee of $15 per signature notarized. Online notaries charge almost twice that at $25 per signature notarized. If you have multiple documents with multiple signers, you’re going to spend a whole lot more with an online notary than with a local notary whom you actually get to meet in person and shake hands with. “Shop Local” also applies to notaries.

You Might Need a Do-Over
The receiving party may not accept an out of state notary seal. A little known fact is that it’s up to the receiving party to decide if they will accept the notarization or not. Online notaries only exist in VA, TX and NV at the moment and the receiving party doesn’t have to accept an out of state seal, particularly if the receiving party is a state government agency. You’ll then need to spend more money getting your document re-notarized by a local notary in your home state.

Unemployment
How are local notaries supposed to make a living? Currently there are approximately 164,000 notaries in California. Now, we have a huge corporate company coming into CA (with the infrastructure already in place) and swallowing up notary jobs leaving thousands out of work. Imagine how hard it will be to find a notary if notaries have been replaced by an app but you can’t get an internet connection!

Conclusion
Technology has brought radical changes to our lives. But, we will end up having more disadvantages than advantages if our society overuses technology. What’s your take on this? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section.

Author: Matt G Miller
Contributing Writer: Kyle Eisenberg
I was given permission to publish this article by Matt Miller although it looks like it had already been published on his personal blog.

You might also like:

How Notary work is similar to online dating
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=15763

eNotary – electronic notarizations
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21344

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March 6, 2019

How do you get something notarized if you don’t have ID?

Filed under: Technical & Legal — admin @ 9:28 am

How to get something notarized if you don’t have ID?

The answer is that it’s not so simple. Most states have rigid rules for who can be notarized and what type of ID is necessary. However, many states allow you to be notarized if two individuals called “credible witnesses” swear to your identity. They can generally be anyone who knows you. But, how can you know if you are in a state that allows credible witnesses? Ask a local notary and find out. The sad thing is that many of them do not know how to use credible witnesses to identify a signer. So, do your homework and find a Notary who is in the know, so to speak.

In the long run all people should have an ID, and there is a typical way to get this. You need to get your birth certificate from the city you were born in — and hopefully you know where that is. From there, you can get a state ID card and then you can get a passport.

Many years ago, you could get a Jurat done (which is a notary act.) Jurats require a sworn Oath but did not used to require identification on the part of the signer. I believe that they do now in all states, but I could be wrong.

Typical ID’s that are acceptable for a notary would be:
State issued ID cards
Drivers licenses
Passports
Military ID cards
Green cards did not used to be acceptable in California but might be now and you can ask a local notary.
Credit cards with photos are NOT acceptable.
Social Security cards are also not acceptable.

As a general rule a government issued photo ID with a signature, serial number, physical description and expiration date would be acceptable.

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