April 2018 - Notary Blog - Signing Tips, Marketing Tips, General Notary Advice - 123notary.com
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April 30, 2018

Who is getting clicks in 2018?

Filed under: Marketing Articles — admin @ 10:17 am

Interpreting clicks is complicated and is a loaded subject. Those who are certified by 123notary get more clicks than the others, however, many do not click on them for fear that they might be expensive which is a realistic fear. The numbers below are based on limited data as I did not want to spend all day long averaging numbers. It is just to give you some sort of an idea. Clicks do not translate directly into jobs. Certified members get more high paying jobs but do not necessarily get more clicks.

High Listings
Elite Members 1.75 clicks/day average
Certified 1.57 clicks/day average
Not Certified 1.59 clicks/day average
Poor Stats 1.23 clicks/day average (notaries with failing test scores)

Conclusion
Elite members have a definitive advantage as users regard them as being the masters of their trade which is true. Only 100 of our 6000 currently listed members are Elite Certified and it is very hard to pass the test. So, it really makes you stand out. Then there were people who miserably failed our notary quiz with around 40% or less who are getting a lot fewer clicks per day. There was no definitive difference between those who were not certified who did reasonably on the notary quiz and those who are certified. Users do not value knowledge of documents that much but do value general notary knowledge to a particular extent.

Medium Members
Elite 1.56 clicks per day
Cert 1.3 clicks per day
Uncert 1.2 clicks per day
Bad Stats .96 clicks per day (notaries with failing test scores)

Interpretation
This time there was measurable difference in the clicks of certified members and an even bigger increase in clicks for those who are elite certified. Those Notaries who failed our Notary test were distinctive in their low clicks as users do value basic knowledge. One of the reasons that our elite certification is not more valued is that the elite members are expensive, and still do not have a 100% knowledge of the notary process or documents even though they are close. Maybe with more refinement of my certifications they will get more weight.

It seems that the most important thing is to try to make sure Notaries score at least 50% on their notary quiz to ensure happy users on our site.

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You might also like:

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

Which Notary Directories get the high paying signings?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19201

Answering the call and then not wanting to talk
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19640

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April 29, 2018

Do I need $1 million (E&O) insurance to get more Notary business?

Do I need $100,000 or $1 million in Errors & Omission (E&O) insurance to get more Notary business?
It is not uncommon for some companies to require that a Notary have more than the standard amount of E&O Insurance. There is no state mandated minimum for E&O unlike a Notary Bond where the law requires every Notary to file an official bond for $15,000 which is designed to pay limited claims against the Notary Public.

But please make no mistake. All Notaries must carry some form of E&O insurance to protect themselves from unintentional errors and omissions they make. Of course, E&O policies will not cover fraudulent acts or intentional errors. Without E&O Insurance, you will have to pay for the cost of the judgment or settlement and your own legal expenses. The financial impact can force a Notary to renounce his/her Notary commission and possibly even declare bankruptcy depending upon then severity of the error.

The high coverage of an E&O policy is based on the false perception that the companies would get a better class of Notary or that they are protected from any and all errors made by the Notary. This is farthest from the truth. I have more than 20 years of experience being a Notary and have never increased my E&O Insurance above the standard amount of $15,000/- primarily for 2 reasons. First, the number of companies requiring $100,000 or even $1 million in E&O Insurance are few and far between and the number of jobs that a Notary gets does not make up for the increased premium for the additional coverage. Second, the E&O policy only covers clerical errors and does not cover any fraudulent acts committed by the Notary. As a matter of practice, I double and sometimes triple check my work and am always cautious of the people who appear before me for a notarization. More importantly, I never do anything that even has the appearance of a scam or fraud. I have no intention of being someone’s boyfriend with no escape clause!!

.

You might also like:

The 30 point course – beneficial interest and E&O Insurance
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=14532

Posts about E&O Insurance
http://blog.123notary.com/?tag=eo-insurance

Help, I’m being sued, and E&O insurance won’t help!
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=3570

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April 28, 2018

Snapdocs has a good algorithm, but…

Filed under: Signing Company Gossip — Tags: — admin @ 10:36 am

Snapdocs has a good algorithm that sorts their Notaries well. The better ones are on top based on their reviews and performance and how recently they logged in. But, some of them are no longer in business unfortunately. Snapdocs lets you know if they have logged in during the last 45 days, but beyond that it is a crap shoot. There are many has beens on that site. Hmmm. The other problem is that their best Notaries are not that great and the general overall quality of Notaries on their site is dismal, but their technology is super.

I guess the various sites have different business models.

Snapdocs focuses on great technological platforms.
123notary focuses on having the best Notaries.
NotaryRotary has the closest Notaries and also has many high quality Notaries.
Signingagent.com has the best quantity of Notaries and NNA Certified, but not necessarily experienced or serious.

So, for each need, there is a niche in the market. The problem is that there are so many tens of thousands of mobile notaries, it is hard to keep track of all of them.

The other thing about Snapdocs that is interesting is that they show you Notaries who are really close to the job. Normally within 12 miles. That is great, but in areas where there aren’t so many Notaries you might not get so many good choices, and if you did, the choices would be too far. I guess it is hard to win.

123notary has the opposite problem. We list people who serve particular areas regardless of how far away they are, within reason. If they are more than 60 miles away, I generally do not list people that far unless it is a very remote area.

So, who provides the best search? I guess that depends on your search needs!

.

You might also like:

Compilation of posts about Snapdocs
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21531

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

The state of notary advertising in 2016
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=16738

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April 27, 2018

Miami Vice — a shipment of illegal notary seals

Filed under: Best Humorous Posts,Sit-Coms — admin @ 10:37 am

CHIEF: Sonny, you need to take care of this. There’s a shipment of illegal Notary seals coming in, but we have no intel on it. Can you handle it?

SONNY: I’m on it. But, I don’t have any reliable sources.

RICO: We’ll use any sources we can get. But, we do have something. Remember Nuggie?

SONNY: Oh God, him again? I’m on it.

(Rico and Sonny travel downtown)

RICO: Let’s get a Cuban cafe first and then find out guy.

SONNY: Deal. I just hope our Ferrari is safe. We’ll keep it in eye distance. Besides it has an alarm.

RICO: Dos cafes cubanos por favor. Y rapido tambien. (Two Cuban coffes, and make it fast!)

(gunshots ring out)

SONNY: Get down….. (pause) I think our plan has a hole in it. Make that a coffee cup with a hole in it. I’ll call it in. (ring ring) Hey, there were gun shots on Sunset BLVD. We have no idea what it was about, but the car sped off and they’re gone now.

GINA: Okay. You can finish your coffee now.

SONNY: How did you know we were having coffee?

GINA: Oh, just a hunch. Call it women’s intuition.

NUGGIE: Hey man, how are my boys doing. The Nug-man has arrived, and arrived in style. Check out my new shades. My new wife bought me these. Ha ha!!! Don’t keep me long because the Nuggie has to Boogie, you dig?

SONNY: We dig. Listen. Do you know anything about a shipment of illegal Notary seals coming into Miami harbor on a freighter in the next few days.

NUGGIE: That all depends on who and how much is asking.

SONNY: Rico, do you have a hundred?

RICO: Here’s two Ben Franklins. This one’s important.

NUGGIE: Oh, allright. Benjamin is doing the asking in repetition. All I know if that a guy named Sanchez is moving some heavy cargo from the Dominican Republic. Word on the street is that they have a seal forging plant over there and the action is hot and humid. You dig?

RICO: Do you know anything about where and when? Or a last name?

NUGGIE: He’s in his late 40’s, Cuban and has a mustache last time I checked. His organization prefers to use fishing boats, but they switch things up quite a bit to keep the authorities guessing.

RICO: Thanks Nuggie, you’ve been a huge help.

SONNY: (ring ring) Gina, do you have any intel on a guy named Sanchez who smuggles using fishing boats.

GINA: Last I heard, he was smuggling fishing boats. What a great cover.

SONNY: Very funny. Do you have anything.

GINA: We have a profile on the guy I think you are talking about. We have names, addresses, and rap sheets.

SONNY: Great, we’ll get the bug van and see if we can pick up some knowledge tapping some phones.

(3 hours later)

VAN GUY: We got the van set up. Sanchez’s crew are in the address we are in front of. They are talking about all types of things. But, they have only mentioned stampers once. I guess by that they mean Notary Seal.

SONNY: Anything about a time or place?

VAN GUY: Nothing yet.

(six hours later)

VAN GUY: (ring ring) We got a time. Noon tomorrow, there’s going to be a transfer from one fishing boat to several inflatable motor boats. Real little ones. They will be carrying the merchandise underwater in bags. if there is any trouble, the seals will sink to the bottom and there will be no evidence unless you have frog guys.

RICO: I know how to dive. I’ll handle this.

VAN GUY: They put a big rock in the bag, so we will have to bring a decompression suit just in case you dive too deep.

TRUDY: Don’t we need a Navy Seal for this, instead of a Notary Seal. It sounds too dangerous for Rico. And where will he hang his suit when he’s diving?

RICO: I’m not worried about that because my wet suit comes with a wet tie, and matching spear gun just in case I need it.

GINA: Hey Sonny, remember that shooting when you were having Cuban coffee? I just found out that was not just a random shooting. That was a competitor of the guy you are chasing named Rubio. They have their own channels for selling fake Notary seals, and are moving in on the supplier.

SONNY: Change of plans guys. We are going to set up a rendevous between Rubio and Sanchez. Either they kill each other, or we can arrest all of them all in one meet. Rico, you pretend to be one of Rubio’s guys and set up the meet. In the ocean. The dress code is wet suits.

RICO: I’m on it.

(nine hours later — at the meet in the ocean. Rubio’s guys try to hijack the merchandise. There is a shoot out. Half of Rubio’s guys are killed and retreat at high speed far away. Sanchez’s guys do not follow. After Rubio’s guys move out, Miami Vice moves in.)

RICO: Freeze, Miami Vice.

(Sanchez’s guys drop the Notary seals into the water. Rico jumps into the water with his spear gun)

VICTOR: Bubble bubble bubble

RICO: You don’t really bubble bubble mean that bubble.

(A secret deal was going on under water. There were five guys in wet suits with underwater guns. But, the Notary seals they were selling were underwater notary seals used by Jacque Cousteau.)

RICO: I’m going to need bubble up, I mean back bubble up. There are fbub-bub-bub-ive of them and only one of me.

SONNY: Damn it. I never thought of that. Ugh!!!!

RICO: But, I brought an underwater charge. I come prepared for this kind of thing mon.

(boom… meanwhile Sanchez’s guys bubble to the surface all disoriented after the underwater blast. Miami Vice has them at gun point. Sanchez puts a gun to his own head because he doesn’t want to go back to jail.

SONNY: Don’t do it. Just put the gun down.

SANCHEZ: I am never going back to jail again. I have had enough. (bang)

SONNY: No!!!!!!!!

After that, the seals were returned to the Florida Notary commission who did not want the seals because they said, “State of Florida, County of Underwater.”

(meanwhile back on Sonny’s boat)

RICO: That was quite a bust. I’ve never seen anything like it. Not in New York, not here. What’s up with your alligator, he is trying to eat his chain.

SONNY: I call it a classic case of “areptile disfunction.”

RICO: Ha ha ha ha ha. Good one.

.

You might also like:

A Notary travels from Florida to India
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19636

Psych Notary Episode. Did the body die of food poisoning or was he murdered?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19397

Notaries in cars getting coffee
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18945

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April 25, 2018

Preparing to Sign a Last Will and Testament

Filed under: Technical & Legal — admin @ 11:11 am

Preparing to Sign a Last Will and Testament

One of the most important documents that a person signs during the course of a lifetime is his or her last will and testament. Of course, ensuring that a last will and testament is drafted properly is crucial. However, ensuring that a last will and testament is valid does not end when the instrument has been written. The manner in which the document is signed is vital to its ultimate validity.

State Laws Govern Drafting and Signing a Last Will and Testament

Each individual state has its own laws as they pertain to the drafting and signing of a last will and testament. With that said, many states utilize a derivation of what is known as the Uniform Probate Code. In other words, although there are some minor differences from one state to another when it comes to a will, there is a great deal of commonality in the laws about wills across the United States.

In order to make certain that a last will and testament is appropriately drafted and properly executed, a person does need to check the specific laws of the state in which the will is signed. This is the only way in which compliance with the law can be confirmed.

The Role of a Notary Public at a Will Signing

A notary public plays a pivotal role in the execution or signing of a last will and testament. One of the power bestowed upon a notary public is the ability to administer oaths and confirm information in certain situations. For example, at the time of the signing of a last will and testament, a notary public is charged with confirming a number of factors before a person signs the instrument.

First, a notary public is required to confirm that the person about to sign his or her last will and testament understands what is contained in the instrument. A notary public doesn’t quiz the signer on the contents of the instrument. Rather, a notary public requires the signer to affirm that he or she has read the instrument and understands its contents.

Second, a notary public must concern that based on his or her reading of a last will and testament that the instrument does what the signer intends. In other words, the signer must affirm that the last will and testament deals with matters associated with his or her estate in the manner in which he or she intents and desires.

Third, a notary must ascertain that the signer of a last will and testament is of sound mind and body at the time of the execution of the instrument.

Finally, when the person signing a last will and testament executes the document, a notary public verifies the signature and affixes the seal of his or her office to the instrument.

Witnesses at a Will Signing

The laws of all states mandate that witnesses be present at the execution of a last will and testament. The laws do differ as to how many witnesses must be on hand at the signing of a last will and testament.

The witnesses are present to confirm that the person executing a last will and testament understands what he or she is doing, that he or she is signing the will as a free and voluntary act, and that the signer is of sound mind and body.

The witnesses can end up playing a pivotal role should the day ever come that a last will and testament is being challenged in some manner. For example, the witnesses might be called upon to testify in court if a challenge is made to the will after the signer of the instrument dies. The witnesses might be called upon to testify that the signer was of sound mind and body when the last will and testament was executed.

At the time of the execution of a last will and testament, a notary ensures that the witnesses understand their roles. The witnesses sign the instrument, after the signer of the will itself completes that task. A notary typically verifies the signatures of the witnesses to the last will and testament as well.

Generally speaking, a last will and testament usually is signed in the office of the attorney that drafted the instrument in the first instance. More often than not, the attorney will have a notary public available from his or her own staff. There are rare situations in which a notary public is called in from the outside to witness and notarize the signing of a last will and testament.

 
Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who focuses on personal finance and other money matters. She currently writes for Checkworks.com, where you can get personal checks and business checks.

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April 20, 2018

A Notary sees a UFO

Filed under: Virtual Comedy Themes — admin @ 10:38 am

NOTARY: I saw a UFO, I really did, I really did.

SAL: Sure you did pal, we all saw it too…. not…

NOTARY: No, you gotta understand. I really saw it. It had lights and everything.

(The next day — the notary is coming home from an appointment. He sees lights and a UFO coming down from the sky slowly.)

NOTARY: Are you going to abduct me.

ALIEN: No, but can you like us on Facebook?

NOTARY: Yesterday, I saw a UFO on my way back from a Notary job, and nobody believed me.

ALIEN: We can do something about that. We’ll reverse the situation. He Quantum, get the memory erasing device.

QUANTUM: Here it is.

ALIEN: (zip sound) Go back to your home earthling.

(Then, the space ship circled around town making a huge profile of itself.)

SAL: Hey, did you see that UFO. Everybody saw it. You were right.

NOTARY: I don’t remember seeing it. I think my memory blacked out that night. There seem to be three hours missing from my day yesterday. I have no idea what happened. I just remember a cornfield.

SAL: What are those strange marks on your neck. Did they inject you with something?

NOTARY: Oh God. I’ll have to see that shrink and go into a trance to figure out what happened.

(The next day… the spaceship returns.

NOTARY: Are you going to abduct me?

ALIEN: Actually, we need these forms notarized. We have an intergallactic driver license. It is a government issued photo ID and expires in the earth year 3026.

NOTARY: Uh-huh. I cannot accept that partly because it has no issue date in earth years and also because you Aliens all look alike.

ALIEN: Hey, I resent that, I’m way better looking than Quazar over here even though I’m 300 years older. I’m actually 412.

NOTARY: Really, you don’t look a day over 399. Oh my God, what are we talking about. What am I doing here. But, if we can go into a time warp, California used to allow notarizing Jurats without ID back in 2001.

ALIEN: No problem, we have that technology but rarely use it. Unfortunately your seal would not have been issued in that date.

NOTARY: I kept the old one.

ALIEN: We are in business. Go and get it!

NOTARY: The main thing is that instead of me being the only one to see a UFO, this time around, everybody else saw it except me. Go figure.

.

You might also like:

The Steve Jobs Notary Smart-Seal
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=16522

Notary Space Station
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18920

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April 17, 2018

How often do Notaries end up in court?

Filed under: Technical & Legal — Tags: — admin @ 10:24 am

Notaries can end up in court for a variety of reasons. If the person you notarized used a fake ID and you did not thumbprint them, you are likely to end up in court. If a borrower is suing the Lender and wants to sue all involved, you could end up in trouble. If you explain something poorly and the signer feels you are denying a legitimate request for service and they miss a deadline and experience a loss — you can end up in court.

Here are some ways to increase your likelihood of ending up in court:

1. Not keeping a journal
2. Doing hospital or elder notarizations (even if you are cautious)
3. Not taking journal thumbprints
4. Not explaining notary requirements clearly to irate customers who will lose big bucks if you refuse them service.
5. Doing a notarization for someone who happens to be in a court building at the time of notarization (sorry, bad example.)

So, bad communication and record keeping skills are the prime reason people get in legal trouble as a Notary.

One in seven full-time Notaries who we have spoken to (rough estimate) have ended up in court at least once. Having good records makes it a lot easier for judges and investigators. So, when we ask you to keep a journal, we are not doing that just to put another burden on you. It is for safety reasons — your safety and the public’s safety.

If someone copies your seal and impersonates you the notary and notarizes something, if you don’t have a journal of what you actually did in real life every day — then you will not be able to prove to a judge that you did not notarize that phony notarization and you can get in trouble or even end up in jail. So, if you don’t like jail, keep a journal. That is a far fetched worst case scenario, but you could get in bad trouble. So, keep a journal even if your state says you don’t have to because the FBI doesn’t play games and neither should you. And FBI is FEDERAL and they work in all states regardless of whether your state requires a journal.

.

You might also like:

13 ways to get sued as a Notary
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19614

10 risks to being a Mobile Notary Public
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19459

he FBI is at your door and names you as a suspect!
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20013

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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!

.

You might also like:

Letter to Donald Trump about the state of the notary industry
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19908

2020 — How the crash of the EU will affect the Notary Industry
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19318

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April 15, 2018

A Job Declined

Filed under: Ken Edelstein — Tags: , — admin @ 11:20 am

A Job Declined
Are you available for a “simple” job late tonight? Up goes my alert status. The caller used two vague take advantage of the notary words. When they say the job is simple it generally has more strings attached to it than a cat with a ball of yarn. Also, late tonight can have many definitions. So I reply with my standard request to know the What, When and Where and if there are any other aspects that I should know about. I’m glad I asked.

The affiant is flying in to Newark airport, not too far from Manhattan. The flight is due to arrive at 2AM; stretching the late tonight a bit. Location is not too far at the southern tip of Manhattan. The document is a simple one page affidavit. Once signed, and when I return home, I am to scan and email. The original goes via FedEx to my client.

OK so far, I quote double my routine fee (for 2AM) and mention the need for exact shipping address with company name, zip code and phone number at destination. Great is the response, we will send you the document in a few minutes. Just a moment please, there is one more aspect to making this work for both of us. My fee, plus the estimated FedEx fee is payable at this time. Do you mean that you want to be paid in advance? Yes, there are many things that can go wrong with this type of assignment.

The plane can be delayed, as is often the case in Newark airport. The affiant my have ID that does not match the document. The affiant may choose to not sign the document. Also, you are asking me to send you an invoice for my fee plus the FedEx charges. Thus, you want me to incur all expenses and wait for your law firm to add me as a vendor and process payment. I do not work that way and neither does anybody else. I can’t even order a T shirt and have Sears send it to me with an invoice for me to pay after receiving it.

Don’t you lawyers insist upon a “retainer” prior to doing anything for your clients? Well, it’s the same for me. The reason that I require payment in advance is to put all “risk” on your side. If any of the problems I mentioned above occur and I am unable to complete the project I truly doubt that you would send me a check. I guarantee to do my part, but my actions rely upon the assurances that you have given to me regarding the assignment.

It is the policy of our firm to process an invoice only after the work has been completed and received, inspected and approved. Well it’s my policy to receive, especially for this early AM, no affiant contact job, my full fee in advance; including out of pocket FedEx charges. Thus, while I certainly do respect your business policies; they conflict with mine. I must decline to accept your assignment. There are many notaries in Manhattan and 123notary, where you found me, lists quite a few more. A few phone calls might find someone who will accept your terms.

If it is close by, during routine hours, and the caller sounds “right” – I go for cash. It’s nice to avoid the PayPal deductions. But when there are “unusual” aspects, I require payment up front. To protect my calendar my phrase is that I do not put the task on my calendar until payment is received; the time slot will be held for 15 minutes awaiting payment. When complex or unusual jobs fail, due to circumstances beyond my control – they never want to send a check for “efforts”.

.

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When you can’t stamp
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18930

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

Decline profitable junk work
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=15495

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April 14, 2018

Check to see if the signatures match

Filed under: Technical & Legal — admin @ 10:24 am

As a Notary, when you do an Acknowledgment, the signer does not need to sign in your presence (in most states). However, they need to appear before you and sign your journal. You must check to see if the signatures match the ID, journal and document. If they don’t, you have a big problem. Also, make sure the person looks like they do in their ID, and note down their ID information in your journal which of course you keep because you can get in trouble if you don’t keep one even in states that don’t require it.

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