General Articles Archives - Notary Blog - Signing Tips, Marketing Tips, General Notary Advice - 123notary.com
123Notary

Notary Blog – Signing Tips, Marketing Tips, General Notary Advice – 123notary.com Control Panel

May 17, 2018

Contacting the authorities

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 10:53 am

Many people ignore the requirements on 123notary such as logging in and passing our Notary test. Some people get their listings paused by us too for these reasons. Many people are treating me as a criminal or scammer simply because I have rules and standards for quality control on my site.

Why should I get blamed for your dysfunction any more than the meter maid should get treated like a criminal for writing you a parking ticket when you have been in a one hour spot for three hours.

Listings on 123notary are for one year unless specified otherwise. However, there are terms that you agree to at the time of sign up. These rules are not hidden. They require you to check a box saying you read and agree to the conditions.

What a few people have done is to go to the BBB after I have removed their listing. I ignore the BBB as they do not represent better businesses. They represent customers who whine when they are not happy with how they have been treated But, if the customer violated our terms and conditions it is not my wrongdoing. The result of contacting the BBB is that I ignore the complaint as it amounts to nothing more than glorified harrassment and the listing does not go back online.

As Notaries, it is not unreasonable to ask that you are experts at all aspects of Notary work (and none of you are) and that you have a good notes section on your listing and login every 120 days. I ask very little, and my conditions are rarely met. When I remove Notaries, I only remove those who did not login for 120+ days but also who had horrifying quiz scores with us or a severe communication disorder. I do this to protect those who use our site, because if they get the worst notaries on 123notary, they will remember us as a site with horrible people.

If you don’t like our terms and conditions that is fine. But only advertise with us if you will comply, otherwise it leads to a lot of trouble for all of us.

Share
>

May 8, 2018

Notary fined $385 for botching a Notarization

Filed under: General Articles — Tags: — admin @ 10:49 am

Many of the Notaries on our site are so incompetent about communication and Notary practices that I shutter to list them. The fact is that I am not always informed when Notaries get in trouble. I would like to hear more stories of Notaries who goof and get in trouble because I want to learn how to prevent the problems from happening in the future.

The fact is that a Notary in Louisiana (I don’t remember clearly the name of the state but think it is Louisiana) did a Notary job for a loan signing. The Notary was new and had no idea what she was doing. There were numerous mistakes on dates, signatures, notarizations, etc. In fact there were so many mistakes that the Lender make the Notary pay for the redraw of documents. The bill came out to $385. Ouch. What a nasty surprise for this enthusiastic but clueless Notary.

The moral of the story is that you cannot just get a Notary seal and start working without knowing what you are doing. The states don’t prepare you at all for Notary work. Even California gives very little hands on training. NNA certified notaries have been trained in some basic aspects of loan signing, but that course does not teach basic Notary knowledge. So, if you think you “know what you are doing” because you are NNA certified, try taking NNA’s Notary Essentials course first. It is better to know how to be a Notary than a loan signer, because most of the mistakes notaries make are either rudeness, leaving people high and dry, not following directions, or you guessed it — Notary mistakes. Notaries very rarely get in trouble for not knowing their loan documents and rarely get in trouble for dating an RTC wrong although it could happen.

So, become an expert at being a Notary. You can get into trouble with me if you don’t and trouble with the law, lenders and customers as well. Knowledge is power and ignorance comes at a high expense.

.

You might also like:

Notary loses $4000 in legal fees because a fraud added a name to the certificate
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19477

If you’re named as an identity theft conspirator, it could cost you $20,000 in legal fees.
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19481

Do you keep a journal to please your state, a judge, the FBI or 123notary?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19483

Share
>

April 16, 2018

State of the Notary Industry = slow

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 11:56 am

Dear Notaries,
The Notary industry seems to be at an all time low. Snapdocs has slowed down a lot. 123notary is getting half of the traffic we used to get during our all time peak a few years ago. Notary Rotary is slow too.

Not only is the industry bad, but Notaries have lost their will to keep themselves up. They are studying less, having fewer standards for themselves, and being hopeless and lazy. It is sad. I want to list the best in the business, but there are so few people who are top notch these days. It is not that people cannot be top notch, they don’t want to be by and large.

We are getting fewer sign ups. Fortunately, we have low expenses, so we can withstand long periods of slow business.

In the long run things could change, refinances could pick up. Interest rates could drop. But, I am not expecting any boom in the next year. On the other hand, back in late 2012 things just picked up all of a sudden and were good for a year. So, keep your fingers crossed and your journal ready.

In the mean time, try to be brushed up on all of your skills and study from our Notary Public 101 course on the blog which is free!

Share
>

April 11, 2018

Letter to Donald Trump about the State of the Notary Industry.

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 10:21 am

Dear President Donald Trump,
You have initiated this wonderful idea of draining swamps. I will inform you that the state of the Notary industry in forty-nine of the fifty states in the nation is a big swamp, except in Florida where it is more of a glade(s).

A well thought out political system should had a network of checks and balances. The minute an organization is not checked, it can run wild and get away with endless mischief or negligence. This is how I believe the Notary industry is at this point. The Notary divisions are generally not watching their Notaries, and the Feds are not watching the Notary divisions at all. The result is rampant ignorance, fraud and criminal activity on the part of Notaries generally done out of negligence. But, why should you or anyone else be especially concerned? In short:

Notary Agencies need to be regulated by the Feds to reduce the incidence of very damaging fraud, perjury, and general ignorance.

.

1. Journals and Property Fraud
If someone impersonated a Notary, the impersonator could sell one of your $300,000,000 properties without your consent and get the Deed recorded. Since in NY State, a notary is not required to keep a journal, the fraudulent sale would not have any particular paper trail back to the notary’s journal who was impersonated. Such an instance would cause immeasurable grief to you and all involved which is why it behooves Federal Law to include statues about keeping journals that all states must abide by or be fined, etc. Journals are very good record keeping tools for notaries, because the name of the individual signing, the name of the document date, time, etc., can be notated. But, a thumbprint can also be taken which can help find someone who gave a fake ID to a Notary. Fake ID’s do not surface more than 1/5000 notary appointments in my experience. But, if a serious act of fraud is done using one, you need a paper trail that can help investigators find the perpetrators. The journal can help prove who did what and when and help prove if a document was falsely notarized.

2. Perjury and Felonies
It is considered by some to be a felony if the Notary claims in writing to have given an Oath to an affiant when in fact they did not. Many Notaries fail to administer Oaths when legally required on a daily basis which means they could be considered a serial felon. A felony is a serious offence, and felons are generally barred from becoming notaries in all states. The fact is that none of the states bother to quiz their notaries on whether or not they administer Oaths, and whether or not those Oaths are relevant, or worded appropriately (or logically.) In my experience, 70% of notaries do not administer Oaths and the other 30% very rarely administer correct Oaths.

3. Mandatory Journal Thumbprints for Deeds
For Deeds affecting real property and Power of Attorney documents, a journal thumbprint can safeguard the transaction from serious fraud. Journal thumbprints are discouraged in Texas and Florida because the governments do not trust Notaries to be custodians of such information. It is feared that the notaries will engage in the unlawful distribution of these biometric data for fraudulent purposes. My opinion is that Notaries should be trusted as much as police, Attorneys, military personal and Judges. If not, then the notary should not be commissioned as a notary to begin with. Few states require thumbprints, but in my opinion all states should

4. Mandatory training and quizzing
Few Notaries know what they are doing (I quiz them which is how I know). Therefor, a simple solution would be for all states to have a Notary class, written test and hands on test. Some states have a day long class. However, I believe that to attain mastery of the Notary profession, between two to four days of class are necessary and should go over theoretical knowledge as well as hands on training. Mastery of what to do when an unusual situation comes up is also critical as Notaries are often asked to do unlawful things and should become experts at saying no to illegal requests. Notaries should also be able to discern between an unusual request and an illegal request because many notaries illegally decline acceptable requests which is a moderate problem. Additionally, Notary divisions should audit notaries from time to time when the Notaries are not expecting it just to keep everyone honest.

.

My request is that you require the Notary divisions to verify that:

1. All Notaries commissioned in their state keep a journal with thumbprints (will require changes to statutes).

2. All Notaries know how to administer Oaths and Affirmations

3. All Notaries know how to correctly fill out notarial forms completed

4. All Notaries know which types of typical requests are legal and which are not.

.

Since there are so many thousands of notaries in each state, this might be time consuming, but it is very necessary. Additionally, it would be beneficial to the industry to have:

1. A minimum fee of $25 per Notary appointment to ensure more applicants feel an incentive to apply for a Notary commission.

2. Fewer Notaries per state so that the states can pick those applicants with higher test scores to keep the average quality high

3. Official minimum fees of at least $25 for travel and $20 waiting time (if at a hospital or situation that merits more than ten minutes waiting time) that must be paid up front at the door to ensure that Notaries will not have their arm twisted to do illegal acts under the duress of not getting paid their travel fee (a very real issue which happens a lot.)

Thank you for your consideration.
Sincerely,
Jeremy Belmont
123notary manager

Share
>

January 22, 2018

123notary’s Notary Training has changed our destiny

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 8:40 am

In the old days ten years ago we had lots of people attempting our Notary test. Most failed, but enough people took it so we got passers multiple times per week. That slowed down over the years. Recently, the quantity of people trying our online test slowed down to about six per month. How pathetic. And with only one passing per month.

I talked Carmen into doing Notary training. We are giving half an hour of Notary mentoring to Notaries who do not understand the basic clerical skills of being a Notary. Many of these Notaries have been doing Notary work for twenty years yet did not know how to fill in a journal correctly, fill in forms in the best way possible or give proper Oaths. There were many other omissions in their knowledge.

But, since Carmen filled in their knowledge, things started to change. The people she tested started to pass my over the phone quizzes, but more myseriously, the people she did NOT talk to ALSO started passing our tests, namely our online test.

I will say that Carmen changed our entire momentum by adding a sense of competency and mentoring in this industry. It is badly needed.

Additionally, October, the month we started doing mentoring was the most profitable month we have had since 2013 which was a boom year. I guess God likes this too as he is sending some not so subtle hints.

God talked to me — yes he did yes he did. I sound like one of those evangelical Notaries. But, God really did communicate with me. I just interpreted the signs! Speaking of signs, can a Notary notarize a sign?

Share
>

January 10, 2018

Notaries just get worse and worse

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 8:35 am

The fact that the money has dried up in this industry is part of the problem. But, even $50 per signing is not that bad if you live in a cheap part of the country. In NYC it might not go far, but in Oklahoma it does. But, the attitude of Notaries gets worse every year they are in business. Notaries start going down hill after three or four years in business. They lose the will to learn anything. Not only do Notaries lose their will, but they lose their spirit — and their attitude gets worse every year.

The bigger problem is that a lot of Notaries on 123notary have twenty years experience. That is sixteen years for your attitude to get really bad. Yet the twenty year veterans think they are the best Notaries when in real life they are some of the most difficult and unpleasant people to deal with.

In any case, in my quest to identify quality Notaries, I get a few good ones here and there who are polite and answer questions intelligently. The rest are whiners and arguers. Some profession this is! Can you imagine if the rest of the world were this unprofessional? Good god!

Share
>

December 14, 2017

A Notary’s membership ended on NR

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 8:25 am

This was sent to me by a loyal client of 123notary. I will not say who it is about or who sent it. But, this is history making in the Notary world. The irony is that we list this Notary on 123notary and are keeping her. The reason is that there are so many Notaries who are bad news that she is the least of our worries!

After being a member of Notary Rotary since 2009, off and on, and being a real trouble maker on Notary Rotary for as long, Harry and Traci Shoemaker finally ended this particular notary’s membership October 16 when she posted derogatory comments about them, personally, and their website. Christine Oldham’s derogatory post was deleted as well, but it was not quite as bad as this other particular notary’s post, which was also deleted. As you may know there are only three other notaries who have been cut from NR since the board came into existence in 2003: Becca/FL, Kelly Robertson/CA, Cheryl Meril/CA. I’m not sure if Becca and Kelly are still notaries, but Cheryl Meril is still notarizing in San Francisco. Not being a member of these two outstanding websites is a tremendous disadvantage if an NSA wants to be actively accepting work in a highly competitive environment.

The other day I signed on to Notary Cafe and saw that this particular Notary posted a derogatory comment about you personally, and your website. Then this Notary went over to 123notary and posted a comment, but not of derogatory nature. Just to be posting, I guess. But will she in the future, just to be mean and hateful?

I just thought you’d like to know that a free member of your site is posting derogatory comments about 123notary on other forums, and it is not her first time. You would totally be within your right to remove this particular Notary who lives in Chicago from free membership and being able to ever have the opportunity to post negative remarks about you personally and your website.

Share
>

December 4, 2017

No matter how good your work is…

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 3:53 am

I had a Notary who did some work for people. She was to do 400 Acknowledgments. They wanted to pay her an hourly rate, but have her finish the paperwork at her home. Then, they wanted her to only bill them for hours done on site. They wrote a complaint about her claiming she tried to overcharge since she wanted to charge for all her hours.

I wrote her back saying that no matter how good your work is, people will still complain. People appreciate good work when they have had a bad experience one too many times in the past. If you had a bad meal several times, you will appreciate the good meal. If you had a bad Notary or a late Notary you will appreciate the punctual one who knows his/her/their stuff(s).

On the other hand, no matter how bad a Notary is, they always spend a lot of effort trying to convince you that they know everything despite that fact that they cannot give intelligent answers to any of my questions.

On the other hand. If you have had a really top-notch Notary, and then another comes along who is just okay, the okay one will look like an incompetent nitwit in comparison.

The secret here is to try to be better than everyone else in all ways. Claiming to be better is unfortunately not part of the equation. You have to actually be better to the point where other people point out to you things you did that were better than the other guy.

Share
>

October 11, 2017

Have you ever met a friend by notarizing?

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 12:50 am

I remember that the only friend I made as a Notary was made as an introduction. I went to a party and met a lady named Mona. I liked her, but she only liked me a little bit. She used me for favors, rides, etc. When you’re desperate you hang out with this type of chick. In any case, she introduced me to her colleague Ravi who was an accountant. He was pretty cool, so we started hanging out. He liked wine and good food, so we made it a regular thing until he moved to the East Coast.

But, my other Notary assignments were for boring people getting loans. Why is the world such a boring place. In fact, I remember very few people that I notarized. I remember Gary who was in jail for blowing up his apartment with explosives. I notarized his jurors too which was a huge coincidence. I remember Jeffrey the Chinese Attorney who loved the fact that I embossed everything. I remember my Korean contact who bought and sold massage places. She had me notarize an acupuncturist called Dr. Kwack. Of all the names a doctor could be named, the doctor was a quack!

I remember doing a Military Oath for a military guy, and an over the phone Oath to swear a Filipina lady into court in the Florida Panhandle. I got to talk to the judge — how exciting. And she cooked for me. Then there was a notarization for a large Chinese family. Yes, I got fed on that one too. Then, a notarization on the trunk of my car notarizing for the brotha’s who told me all about the names black people had. Oooh they got names!

Everything else is a blur. I don’t remember much. It was so long ago. I remember a few of my favorite signing companies.

But, if I could go back into time and change a few things, I would have tried to understand the process a little better and take more notes. I was not as disciplined back then as I am now about keeping written records.

What about you?

Share
>

October 7, 2017

Is it just annoying or a free source of help?

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 12:49 am

What sticks out in my head is how upset Notaries feel that I am minding their business by asking them questions. How intrusive, rude and unnecessary. You know how to do your job and are paying me, right? So, why should I verify if you know your basics? The sad fact is that one day I woke up in the morning and wanted more 123notary certified Notaries to pass our elite test. So, since people were not testing on their own initiative, I called some certified Notaries up to give them a free elite test that we normally charge. The result was that Notaries were scoring 40% on loan document knowledge and worse handling situations in quiz questions. I decided that I need to know who knows what and call all members of our site one by one which could take half a year or more to complete a quiz for.

In any case, having a directory filled with Notaries who don’t know what they are doing doesn’t seem like a good idea. But, on the other hand, the customers don’t know the difference. If you are a bad Notary, you can get away with it. So, what you don’t know what an Affirmation is. When was the last time someone asked you for one, right? However, customers complain about these things from Notaries:

(1) Rudeness
(2) Leaving people high and dry
(3) Not following directions
(4) Not communicating well.

So, the scoring of my quiz takes into consideration these other elements as much as it takes into consideration actual Notary knowledge. You could be the worst Notary in the world. But, if you are polite, answer my situational questions correctly and communicate clearly, you will get a passing score on my quiz. You can go through life without knowing anything and Jeremy will let you get away with it.

The problem is that I am getting so much hatred, psychotic behavior, anger, resistance, and reluctance. I only have two minutes worth of questions about what you do for a living. Is it that painful. And then there are the people who can’t talk because they are at the airport, driving, at a signing. just leaving a signing, almost at a signing, cooking, sleeping, or eating. You can afford two minutes otherwise I have to either fail you or keep chasing you. These scores affect your future with us so take it seriously. It only takes two minutes.

I am basically giving away free knowledge and one-on-one tutoring to people who are not paying for it. Only 10% of our people claim to appreciate this knowledge. Nobody else will offer you this service or disservice. I might save you from ending up in court or jail with a two minute phone call. How can you not appreciate this. I am experienced and talk with thousands of Notaries. I know more than you do about many aspects of this business, so why would you avoid a chance to learn?

I want to please those who do want to learn and who do have a good attitude. I want to give them free extras and free knowledge and help. But, in the back of my mind, the stronger impression is that of the people who hate me and want to resist any communication with me other than arguing with me. How sad!

Share
>
Older Posts »