November 2013 - Notary Blog - Signing Tips, Marketing Tips, General Notary Advice - 123notary.com
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November 28, 2013

Who are all the parties involved in a Power of Attorney?

The Principal (also called the grantor) is the person who needs an agent to act on his/her behalf in dealing with legal, financial, and/or health care issues that ultimately involve signing documents, checks, and so forth.
The grantor grants power to the Attorney in Fact via the Power of Attorney document; the Attorney in Fact (also known as the agent or grantee) may then make decisions and sign on behalf of the grantor.

The Attorney in Fact (also called the agent or grantee) is the person designated in the Power of Attorney to act solely on behalf of the principal, avoiding any conflict of interest or personal considerations. The Attorney in Fact acts as a fiduciary, someone who can take care of money for the principal and whose judgment, advice, and assistance can be relied upon. If the fiduciary is, for example, the guardian of an estate, he or she must file a fiduciary bond with the probate court or judge. The Attorney in Fact may transact purchases and sales and financial affairs, and execute agreements.

An Attorney involved may be a family Attorney who drafted the Power of Attorney or one who represents the principal in other matters; by contrast, the Attorney in Fact is often a family member, and not an Attorney who represents the principal for a fee. All rights granted to the Attorney in Fact are set forth and may be limited at the beginning by the grantor; thus, the necessity of having a good Attorney draw up the Power of Attorney. The Attorney may be involved in creating legal remedies or documents that the Attorney in Fact will execute. There may also be an Attorney representing whatever entity (e.g, a bank) the Attorney in Fact works with on behalf of the principal.

The Notary may be involved in notarizing a Power of Attorney at a hospital signing. In this case, the notary may need to question the grantor sufficiently so that he or she is certain the grantor is doing this of his or her own free will and understands the nature of the powers granted to the Attorney in Fact, and the notary must record any observations in the notary journal. As a notary signing agent, the notary must also ID an Attorney in Fact who acts on behalf of the borrower at a signing. In such a case, be advised that the notary’s job is to identify the signer, not to verify his or her capacity http://blog.123notary.com/?p=2632 .

You might also like:

Power of Attorney: types often created
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=6732

Information about various notary procedures
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=2268

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November 27, 2013

Does Real Estate experience help as a notary?

We asked on Facebook which type of professional background helps if you are a signing agent. Mortgage and Title experience helps to a point, but not that much. I keep telling people, it is a lot different when you are on the “other” side of the table with a notary stamp in your hand. The type of knowledge you need and the type of experience is very different.

I give a little quiz to people where I ask them a few questions over the phone. People complain that I catch them off guard. I tell them that they should know loan signing terminology so well that they should be able to talk about it if they are drunk, stoned, or in a deep sleep. So, I ask people what the technical term for the date of the signing is — and even a loan processor with 30 years of experience couldn’t tell me. Mortgage brokers are notorious for failing our certification test. Additionally, NNA certified signing agents who think they know it all score an average of 30% on our phone test.

In defense of notary2pro’s course, the notary2pro graduates get more like 65% on our over the phone quiz which is excellent and comparable to those who pass the 123notary certification test.

But, the worst luck I have had is with people who tell me all about their Real Estate experience. They tell me for 10 minutes how they know all about loan documents because they were a Real Estate Agent. Then I ask them what the APR is, and they say, “Huh?”. The APR, don’t you know the APR? How would you define the APR? Then if they are somewhat with it, they define the APR as being the Annual Percentage Rate which is not a definition, but another spelled out name for the APR.

In any case, from talking to enough Real Estate Brokers, being in that profession is nothing to brag about when trying to advertise yourself as a notary. In fact, I think it is negative advertising. It is sort of like saying that you know nothing about being a notary, so instead — you will try to pass yourself off as someone who knows the documents — when in fact you don’t know the first thing about being a loan signer and don’t even know what the APR is in most cases.

OMG. Are all Realtors this bad?

The bottom line is that if you want to be a signing agent, study to be a signing agent. Study from 123notary if you want our certification icon on your listing. Otherwise, study from notary2pro for some good one on one mentoring from their staff.

Tweets:
(1) Drunk? Stoned? In a deep sleep? No matter! Know your loan signing terminology!
(2) It’s a lot different when you are on the “other” side of the table w/a notary stamp.
(3) A loan processer 30 year vet didn’t know the technical term for the “date of signing”
(4) Real Estate Brokers need to get real! You don’t know ur loan docs as well as you think you do!

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November 19, 2013

Interview with Timios title

Interview with Joe Montag_manager, Timios title: an excellent title agency– growing!

BACKGROUND AND BASICS ABOUT TIMIOS:

“Our CEO and management team worked at another title company. The CEO had left in 2008, and the company closed down; 600 people were without a job.
The CEO started Timios with 6 people; we now have 170 employees. We make sure everyone gets paid in a timely manner. We pay biweekly– everything. California, Texas, and the midwest and East coast are our biggest areas, but we are expanding everywhere. And we are nationwide.

HOW WE HIRE A NOTARY:

When we interview a notary on the phone–and we interview every notary–one of the things we try to do is use acronyms– like the TIL–to be sure they are experienced. For example, we might ask you to “pull the signing HUD, and they might need an approved TIL.” If the notary does not respond in a way that shows familiarity, we dig deeper and ask point blank, “How many signings have you done?” We are not necessarily looking for a great deal of experience, but we are looking for an intelligent response. We would hire a new notary–particularly people from the mortgage industry. Also, for example, we know that notaries in California have passed a good exam and know something. In Texas, it costs less to be a notary, so the people may not be so good. A new notary may know nothing at all, so in Texas we may look for more experience, or quiz notaries a bit more.

OUR STANDARDS FOR NOTARIES:

We talk to every notary who signs up. We also have a special system for preferred vendors– experienced notaries we have worked with. If you come late, have problems with documents–we will rank you lower in the system, and then eventually suspend you. But this does not happen a lot. If notaries show up in flip-flops or poorly dressed– not good.
We have 50 closing specialists who are escrow officers and call the notary when everything is ready to go. They give them their phone number and any specific instructions right before the job. If the closer feels there is a problem with the notary–the way they answer the phone–they will question the notary and say “Is everything ok?” If the notary does not answer well or seems rude or not clear-headed– we may cancel the closing. I tell my closers, “Use your gut.” We are very careful.
The processors are escrow assistants, and they also schedule appointments. The processor will pull up notaries on our list by zip code, ranking, and price. We do not exclude a notary who is the most expensive–but they better be a 99 in ranking. For that, they have to have been on time, have great recommendations from borrowers, and have no errors. If they miss a signature and go back and correct it–no problem. You don’t show up late without calling ahead. It’s about communication, and the willingness to work with us to get it fixed. Sometimes a notary will miss an acknowledgement and then charge us to go back and fix it! We pay; we are not going to argue–but then, we will not use that notary again.

WHY NOTARIES LOVE WORKING WITH TIMIOS:

We provide contact information for the notary, and are always available. We also send out an instruction sheet. When we recruit a notary, we use 123notary all the time– and we ask the notary if they have conducted loan closings, what counties they cover, can they print docs from our website. Everything is done by logging into our website; that way we can see when they downloaded and printed, and when the signing is complete. There is no fee for notaries to sign up with us. We do tell a notary what we pay on average in the area. We do not ask that they lower their fee, but we do say what we generally pay.

All our processors and closers get training. They have worked their way up; we do a lot of on-the-job training. Many processors start out in support, and many closers were once processors. We tend to have long term employees; our turnover is low. We are growing, and we grow organically.

We do not want to be so big (like some of the big name underwriters) that we cannot communicate with people. All the big underwriters set up their own agencies, and they keep their business so there is almost a monopoly, and you get to the point where service isn’t important. We want to address the industry from a customer service view; the client might be the borrower, the seller, the real estate agent, the mortgage broker– and the notary. We want to serve ALL of these. We try to make everyone happy.

We give very clear expectations. And it has paid off. We are trying to build our database. We do not want any negative comments about Timios. Our name, Timios, means “honest” in Greek. It means we have integrity. We are trying to bring that back into the industry.”

You might also like:

Interview with Title Source
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=6553

Interview with a Title Company
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=3724

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November 18, 2013

10 quick changes to your notes that double your calls!

I have been poking around and seeing how the newer listings are performing. Basically, it is bizarre. Some are getting clicks up the yazoo, while others get one click per week. So, I decided to take a closer look and see what is going on.

Obviously, notaries with reviews get tons more work simply because they have credibility from 3rd parties. But, brand new listings don’t have any reviews, so the only thing that makes them different is their NOTES section. So, what did I notice? Many notaries refuse to write a notes section, so I have to make something up for them. I write stuff like: I am reliable, motivated, and personable. These wishy-washy adjectives mean nothing to me, but I wonder what they mean to the browsers on our site. The answer is that they mean something alright! Worse! The ones with nonsense claims using a string of adjectives and commas are getting next to no clicks! So, what works and what doesn’t. The good, the bad and the ugly.

(1) Adjectives: BAD
Example: Reliable, personable, friendly, accurate, detail oriented

Result: Will get you far below average clicks just because you are saying nothing about yourself that sounds REAL to the reader.

(2) Years of experience: So-So
The number doesn’t reflect what you have actually done. Having many years of experience doesn’t count against you, but it also doesn’t count for you.

(3) NNA certification: So-So
Result: Generally, those who claim to be NNA certified do no better than the average notary. If you average it out, those who claim to be NNA certified do oh so slightly better than the average notes section of other newbies. BTW, 90% of notaries on 123notary are NNA certified, so by claiming it on your profile you might as well say, “I am no different than 90% of the other notaries on this site”

(4) Real Estate Agent: So-So
To me this is a waste of space. Those with Real Estate backgrounds fail to realize that despite their self-promoting claims, they really don’t understand the loan documents at all unless they have really studied for at least five hours from a loan signing course. It is not a selling feature because people want to hire you as a notary, and not to sell their house!

(5) Languages: Good
I encourage people to list their language first, before stating anything else. Fluent Spanish; Conversational Cambodian; Some Portuguese. In your notes section you can say how well you speak the language, but NOT in the language field which only accepts the name of the language. Those who put their language skills up front got more clicks, but nothing earthshaking.

(6) Radiuses: Very good
Example: 100 mile radius; or; Travel above 20 miles is charged an extra fee.
The notaries who listed how far they went in a clear and non-verbose way did better on clicks. EVEN if you have restrictions about how far you will go for a charge, the fact that you will go far away means a lot to the readers.

(7) Terms and Conditions: Good
Even if you have extra fees, or large charges, people like getting the facts. They are reading your profile for facts, not fluff.

(8) # of loans: Good
The number of years you have been in business says very little. But, the number of loans says a lot more. If you have done 1000 loans, you might still be ignorant of a lot of what you need to know, but at least you can measure your experience.

(9) Last minute signings: Good
Notaries who do last minute signings got more clicks. Nothing amazing, but they got a lot more jobs as well. Clicks and jobs are not proportional. When it comes down to getting a job assigned, you need someone who will jump when you say jump.

(10) Minimums: Good
Minimums are constrictive, but show that you are professional and mean serious business. We found only three examples of people with minimums. One did a lot better than average while the other two did average. It doesn’t seem to hurt to have a minimum.

Tweets:
(1) Notaries with reviews get tons more work simply because they have credibility from 3rd parties.

(2) Make your notes sound real and believable and you’ll get more clicks. That’s a fact. P.S. – They’re reading your profile for facts, not fluff.

(3) Listing your language skills can help get more clicks.

(4) Clearly stating how far you’ll travel is very good for your business

(5) The number of years you’ve been in business isn’t as important as the number of loans.

You might also like:

How many financial packages do you mention in your notes?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19997

Clarifying vague claims in your notes section
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=4675

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November 15, 2013

123notary Elite Certification, what is it all about?

Filed under: Signing Tips — Tags: — admin @ 9:53 am

123notary Elite Certification is not for everyone. It is for the cream of the crop. Although we recommend it only for those with over 750 signings under their belt, any serious notary who loves to learn might be a good prospect for this course.

Our Elite Certification is currently $179 and comes with a Ninja Notary Marketing Course that covers higher aspects of notary, signing agent, and notary marketing knowledge, interesting stories, interviews with Title companies, and more… Please read our summary of the Ninja course to learn if it is right for you!

Why get our Elite Certification?
Those with our Elite icon typically get somewhat of a monopoly on jobs, and get more than their fair share of higher paying jobs as well. Those who have a generous budget want to hire the best notaries, and on 123notary, it is easy to identify those notaries with their little yellow icon!

Are Elite Notaries really better?
Yes! I spend a lot of time with notaries on the phone. I will vouch for the fact that regular 123notary certified notaries know roughly DOUBLE about signing agent work than their uncertified counterparts. On the other hand, Elite certified notaries typically have a very deep knowledge about the industry. Although they might be fuzzy on some of their facts, they typically have in depth knowledge about many aspects of signing agent work since they have done so much of it. Although some of our Elite members are a bit snobby and argumentative, I will vouch for the fact that they are much more sophisticated as signers than the remaining 97% of the crop!

How much more work do Elite notaries get?
Regular 123notary certified notaries get roughly 2.5x more work than non-123notary certified notaries. Elite certified notaries get roughly 1.5x more work than regular 123notary certified notaries. That translates into roughly 3.75x as much work as someone who isn’t certified by 123notary at all!

Is it worth it?
You pay once for the course, and it keeps paying off day after day, year after year. It is like a goose that lays golden eggs! You can think of it as paying for itself after less than two signings! For those who want to get ahead, it is a huge bargain…

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Common Mistakes with: 1003, Crossing out, RTC, TIL & APR

The problem with the signing agent industry is that education is simply not taken seriously. Newer signing agents will take a certification course somewhere, pass by the skin of their teeth, and then say, “I’m done learning”. The effect is that their brain turns off, and there is no more curiousity to learn or thirst for knowledge.

123notary offers a lot of information in the blog which is free, not to mention a plethora of signing courses and new testing systems that are currently being experimented with. Please take advantage of the information that is out there for best results.

Here are some common mistakes that are really dumb that newer signing agents do.

(1) Call the lender about the 1003
The 1003 is always wrong. It is not a final document by the way. The natural order of documents in terms of the finality of information starts with the 1003 which is an application. This application is typed up by minimum wage workers who systematically make mistakes, and the lenders as a group seem to think it is okay to make mistakes on loan documents for loans of half a million dollars. First of all it is NOT okay, secondly it upsets borrowers, and thirdly, it leaves signing agents in a perceived quandry. They think they need to call the lender if information in this document is wrong. This is the one document you can do cross outs on. It doesn’t matter. The next version of information about names and numbers would be the Good Faith Estimate. It is once again a preliminary document and just an estimate. The final document with numbers is the HUD-1 Settlement Statement. If there is an error here — then it is time to call the lender and perhaps even redraw the documents or just cancel the entire loan process

(2) Just cross out and initial
Many lenders have low standards. We live in a world where standards are pathetically low. Just because a handful, or more than a handful of the lenders you work with have low standards doesn’t mean that you should. There exists a concept called “Best Practices”, and that concept involves not making a mess unless you really are compelled to. If names are wrong on documents AND THE LENDER IS NOT AVAILABLE (which is the norm), you can initial under the last few letters of the last name. This is clean, and the processor can cross out after the fact or do whatever they like. YOU are not compelled to cross out. Just leave a voice mail for the lender to let them know what you did and why. If there are errors on the notary certificates, once again crossing things out is unprofessional and messy. Keep in mind these are LEGAL documents and making a mess on a legally binding document seems very questionable at best. It is cleaner to get a loose acknowledgment, staple it and start fresh without the cross outs. So, when do you need to cross things out? On the right to cancel if you need to change dates, and there is no borrower copy with the dates left blank — THEN, and only then in my experience are you compelled to cross out the old date and write in a new date and have the borrowers initial

(3) RTC
Guess what. The day of the signing is NOT included in the (3) days to rescind. Many newer notaries don’t know this. The reach for their rescission calendar because they can not think on their own. Learn to calculate, learn to count, and learn to think. Learn when the Federal holidays happen and learn to calculate rescission dates when a signing happens right before a Federal holiday.

(4) TIL
Many signers think that there is detailed information about the prepayment penalty on the TIL. Wrong. The TIL states that you will, won’t, or might have a prepayment penalty. That is not what I consider detailed, that is merely a tidbit of information.

(5) APR
Few if any newer signing agents, or even experienced signing agents can discuss the APR and sound professional doing so. Learn and memorize a professional sounding definition of this figure so that when asked, you will be able to answer FLUENTLY, even in your sleep.

You might also like:

How do you explain the APR to a non-borrowing spouse?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=4455

Minimum competency guide discusses RTC, APR, Journals & more
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=4337

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November 11, 2013

Affidavits — What do you need to know?

BLOG: Affidavits

What is an Affidavit?
An Affidavit is generally a document that has an accompanying Sworn Oath. The person who swears under Oath is the Affiant or Deponent. The person giving the Oath could be a Notary Public, Justice of the Peace, Court Recorder, Commissioner of Oaths, Judge, or other type of official who has the authorization and capacity to give Sworn Oaths.

What types of Affidavits are there?
There are many types of Affidavits. Many are for business. There are various types of Affidavits used in loan signings such as Signature Affidavits, and Occupancy Affidavits. A Financial Status Affidavit is also common in loan signings. For people who want to be able to come to the United States, sometimes it is necessary for a relative or loved one to sign an Affidavit of Support. Many people who lost their passports and can’t find their Birth Certificates sign and swear to an Affidavit of Citizenship.

There are many other types of Affidavits as well!
Jurats commonly have an attestation clause at the end certifying the fact that the affiant made an Oath and the date and signatures.

Other common types of Affidavits:
Affidavit of Heirship, Affidavit of Residence, Affidavit of Name Change, Affidavit of Service, Financial Affidavit, Affidavfit of Domicile, Affidavit of Death, ID Theft Affidavit.

What types of wording can you use in an Affidavit?
You can word an Affidavit any way you like, but if it is to be used as a legal document, please consult an Attorney. Additionally, please do not ask a notary public to draft documents, because many states have restrictions as to what a notary public is allowed to do, especially if it borders on what Attorneys typically do.

How do I get an Affidavit notarized?
Please find a notary on 123notary.com! We have 7000 mobile notaries throughout the nation waiting to help you. Just visit our find a notary page in the navigation bar above!

You might also like:

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

Notarizing a Name Affidavit
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=4711

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November 9, 2013

Notary Jokes

Filed under: Humorous Posts — Tags: , — admin @ 8:24 am

Notary Jokes & Notary humor

There is nothing funny about being a notary. The long hours, the crabby customers, the ever-changing notary laws that you are required to keep up with. How can any one possibly write a blog entry about notary jokes? So, I’ll try my best.

(1) A notary goes to a signing. The signer (who is a borrower) signs a stack of loan documents. The next day the signer cancels the loan and immediately goes to confession and says, “Forgive me father for I have rescinded”.

(2) A notary goes to a signing. The borrower’s lender was crooked and paid extra to get an inflated statement of the home’s value. When the borrower found out how much his house was worth he said, “Appraise the Lord”.

(3) 3 Notaries walk in to a bar. The first thing that happens is that the bartender asks for ID. Notary #1 says, “Wait a second… I’m a notary… I ID YOU… YOU don’t ID me.” Then the bar tender says, “Listen buddy, if you want a drink, I need to know you are of age”. Notary #1 said, “No problem, I can produce ID, but I can also swear under oath, and the other
notary sitting next to me can take the oath for me.”

See more at: 3 Notaries walk into a bar. http://blog.123notary.com/?p=3660

(4) A Notary Signing Agent goes to a restaurant. He has dinner. Then the waiter brings the check. The notary asks, “When is my first payment due?” The waiter answered, “In 5 minutes, the term of your loan is 45 minutes — with no accrued interest. The final payment is due tonight as well.” Then the notary needed to get validated. “Can I stamp my parking ticket myself? I’m a notary, that is kind of my thing…”

See more at My date with Jeremy http://blog.123notary.com/?p=4473

(5) I start the signing by jumping on the table. I never refuse a drink of water or milk either. I never pre-word acknowledgment forms before a signing, because I insist on starting from scratch. 2 years on a swat team and pawprinting service available upon request.

See more at : Meao notary service: http://blog.123notary.com/?p=4147

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November 7, 2013

Rich man poor man: Market Yourself to the Wealthy

Rich Man Poor Man

Here is some shocking news – wealthy people have an easier time paying a higher notary fee compared to poor people. Wow! Whatta surprise. Pardon my obvious statement. But I do wonder why so many notaries are struggling with signing service fees – fees paid by little entities with balance sheets that are awash in red ink. Do you have a signing service in your town? Probably not, but you do have many wealthy people whose time is very valuable. Now you know the secret of collecting those higher and much easier to earn fees. Market yourself to the wealthy. It’s that simple. It’s the opposite of going, as a notary to the poorhouse seeking clients. Who are the wealthy? You already know – but might not know just why they need you. Let’s take some time out from the signing rat race, step out of the maze and let me show you the shortcut to the cheese.

I had a fellow who gave me over 17 Apostille assignments for an adoption. He needed various doctor statements to be notarized and receive an Apostille. My fee for each, no discounting; was on the high side for an edoc job. However, the work was much quicker and cleaner. He was a –big shot – stockbroker. He worried about missing an important call and losing a commission that would have been over 6 months of earning – for me. But, not for him; he makes that much money in the course of a 15 minute phone call. I know this for a fact as he told me – while paying me – how he just made several thousand dollars. He even gave me a Franklyn for a tip!

Attorneys often receive Power of Attorney; to sign papers for their clients. The high profile client does not want to hunt for a notary. The Attorney of record, as involved in the transaction cannot notarize the client giving him the power – so an outside notary is needed. Enter the mobile notary, me, to their office. Of course they have others who usually handle this, but sometimes they are on vacation or out sick – I get the call. Doctors, will not go hunting for a notary – they like to have a card on file of a reliable notary who will go to them.

Everyday shopkeepers, who must –mind the store- often have legal documents that must be notarized. The needs vary greatly – the common thread is that their time is worth more than your time. They can pay me XX which is very much worth my while to go to them – and that XX is less than the revenue they would lose by going to find a notary. Clearly, this works best with people whose time is one of their most valuable assets. As a http://newyorkmobilenotarypublic.com I probably have more rich people here in Manhattan compared to most places. But the concept is applicable in your home town too. Give a card to the general manager of the large Big Box stores in the local shopping centers. I sure don’t have many WalMarts in Manhattan. That person is busy, very busy – and is likely to need a notary now and then but do they have your card? That person pays to save time using company money – it’s not out of the managers’ pocket – does that matter to you.

To harp on the point. Seek out the wealthy who have little time to spare and more money to spend. When you run out of wealthy prospects seek out those who can pay using –company money- to save their personal time. Trust me on this – it is very pleasant to work with these people. They are very appreciative of your services, and are willing to pay fair rates. Now compare what I have written above to a discussion with El Cheepo signing as you beg for an additional ten dollars for faxing 50 pages. Are you marketing yourself wisely to the right prospects?

You might also like:

7 ways to use Facebook to market your notary services
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=5396

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California Acknowledgment Wording Explained

California Acknowledgment Wording Explained

The most common notary act in the United States is the Acknowledgment. Acknowledged signatures represent roughly 80% of notary acts; with Jurats comprising of most of the remainder.

Here is some sample California Acknowledgment Wording.

State of _____________
County of ____________

On _________ before me, ________________________________________,
(name of notary public )
personally appeared _____________________________________________
who proved to me on the basis of satisfactory evidence to be the person(s)
whose name(s) is/are subscribed to the within instrument and who acknowledged
to me that he/she/they executed the same in their authorized capacity(ies),
and by his/her/their signature(s) on the instrument the person(s), or entity
upon behalf of which the person(s) acted, executed the instrument.

I certify under PENALTY of PERJURY under the laws of the state of California
that the foregoing paragraph is true and correct.

WITNESS my hand and official seal.

____________________________
(Signature of Notary)

Please note that the top section of the certificate wording is called the venue which consists of a documentation of the state and the county. Next comes the body of the acknowledgment certification which documents the date, the name of the notary, the name of the signer who personally appeared before the notary, the fact that the signer was identified properly (they use the term satisfactory evidence to mean that the signer had ID, or was identified through the use of credible witnesses).

The most critical part of the California Acknowledgment Verbiage is that the signer acknowledges subscribing to the within instrument. This simply means that the signer claims that they signed the document. They could have signed hours, months, or years before seeing the notary — and it doesn’t matter so long as they appear before the notary to “acknowledge” that they signed the document. Additionally, the signer must sign the California Notary Journal as well.

Witness my hand and official seal is confusing California Acknowledgment verbiage. A seal, in notary verbiage, could refer to a signature or an official notary stamp (confusing). The notary must sign and affix his/her/its notary seal to the California Acknowledgment Certificate. Please note that the stamp may not be placed over any signatures or wording otherwise it voids the seal.

Please also note that there are lots of (s), is/are, he/she/they, within the text. The notary is expected (many do not do this though) to cross out the inappropriate text near the forward slashes. If you are doing a notarization for a single man, then cross out the she and they and (s) in name, unless he has more than one name being used in the notarization (which would be an interesting case).

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