February 2019 - Notary Blog - Signing Tips, Marketing Tips, General Notary Advice - 123notary.com

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February 16, 2019

What is a document date?

Filed under: Technical & Legal — admin @ 10:42 am

What is a document date on a document? Is the document date an important fact for Notaries to know? There is a great bit of confusion about this topic.

A document date is an arbitrary date that the document drafter adds or inscribes within the document. Although the document date is arbitrary, certain customs apply.

The document date is usually based on the date the document is either written, becomes effective, or is intended to be signed.

In real life, sometimes signings are postponed by a day or two because something came up. The main point to remember here is that there is no hard and fast rule as to what a document date is, can be or should be. To further research this point, I read through the first several dozen posts on Google about this topic and none of them address is clearly.


February 15, 2019

Notaries who fail the California Notary exam

Failing the California Notary Exam
Did you fail your California Notary Exam? I passed it many years ago. I studied about 30 hours to make sure I passed the first time. I was nervous and so afraid that I would forget something. We were instructed to bring a see through plastic bag and put particular objects in that bag such as a pencil and a few other things.

The California notary exam is a a lot harder now than in 1997 and 2001 when I took it. The questions are harder, and the multiple choice questions are close variations of each other making it hard to spot the correct answer unless you know your stuff intimately. So study hard. You need to study from the California Notary Handbook but also there are updates on the newsletter from the California Notary Division.

The state carefully hides their questions so you won’t know what is coming unless you know someone who wants to share answers with you. You need to know your notary acts, fees, procedures and application process inside out or you will fail. I believe they allow seven wrong out of thirty, but the questions are so hard that is still not easy.

There are a lot of notaries failing the test and there are fewer Notaries in the state of California as a result. On a more pleasant note, the quality of Notaries in California is far superior to all other states. I know because I test people by phone on notary procedure since I run a notary directory.


February 14, 2019

Notarizing confidential marriage licenses

Notarizing confidential marriage licenses

Marriage licenses are normally issued by the county clerk’s office. There are agencies that can expedite the process of getting this license. The use of a wedding officiant is an efficient way to get your marriage license.

Many Notaries do weddings. But, finding them on 123notary is not always easy. We have many Notaries in Florida and South Carolina who do weddings. To find Notaries in other states to do confidential marriage licenses, you should visit google and enter the words:

Your state
Your city
confidential marriage license
wedding officiant

You might not be able to use all of those words in each search, but fool around with the words and you might find someone good who is not too far away.


February 13, 2019

How do you notarize a copy of a passport?

A few states might allow copy certification on the part of the Notary which means that the notary would officially vouch for the truthfulness and authenticity of the copy.

However, most states do not allow this. Copy certification by document custodian is an embellished Jurat. It requires the signer or document custodian to swear to the truthfulness of the copy of the document. It is generally best that the notary also inspect the document to make sure it is a true copy and perhaps write an informal note stating the same. This is how I was trained when I was a Notary Public.


February 12, 2019

Parties involved in a Power of Attorney

In a Power of Attorney there are a handful of parties that could be involved.

This is the person who hopefully is supervising you in the Power of Attorney creation, drafting and notarizing process. It is not recommended to engage in this process without professional leadership from an Attorney specializing in whatever you are doing.

The Grantor is the person giving powers to someone else. He is also called the Principal signer.

The Principal is the entity signing the Power of Attorney to give powers to another party namely the Grantee, Agent or Attorney in Fact

The Agent is the party who has been given special powers by virtue of the fact that the Power of Attorney was signed

Attorney in Fact
This is a more formal term for Agent, or the person who receives rights, privileges or powers after the signing of a Power of Attorney

The party once again who receives rights from the signing of a Power of Attorney who is only called a Grantee in the document itself but called an Attorney in fact or Agent in real life.

Notary Public
The party who notarizes the Power of Attorney. The Notary act most appropriate for this type of document would be an Acknowledgment.

The party who holds on to the Power of Attorney is called a custodian. This might be a bank, financial bureau, county clerk, attorney, or other entity or entities. There might be more than one entity holding on to a Power of Attorney.

You might also like:

How do I get a notarized power of attorney?

Power of Attorney of the future

Living Will vs. Medical Power of Attorney

Index of posts about power of attorney


February 11, 2019

Certifying a Power of Attorney

In certain states, a Notary can certify a Power of Attorney. It is called a California Copy Certification of a Power of Attorney.

You need a specific NNA form for this Notary act.

The certificate form has room for the state, county, date, and a statement.

I certify that the attached document is a true, complete, and unaltered copy of a power of attorney presented to and examined by me on this date by (name of person presenting the document.) Under section 4207 of the California probate code.

Then the Notary should write in his/her name and sign, plus affix their official Notary seal.

People very rarely get this act done, but it is possible.

You might also like:

Bank of America Power of Attorney Form

How do you get a Power of Attorney Document?

Index of Posts about Power of Attorney

How do I get a notarized Power of Attorney?


February 10, 2019

Proof of Execution

Filed under: Notary Acts & Certificates — Tags: , — admin @ 10:48 am

What is a Proof of execution? This is an unusual Notary act that few Notaries have ever done. Yet it is allowed in roughly 45 of the 50 states. A Proof of Execution is an act where a Principal signer signs a document in the presence of a Subscribing Witness. The Subscribing Witness then soon after swears under Oath before a Notary Public that the principal signer signed the document in their presence. This type of notary act is prohibited for Deeds and Powers of Attorney, but for less critical documents is allowed.

You might also like:

Proof of Execution and basic notary acts in Notary Public 101

Which Notary act does not require the personal appearance of the principal signer?

Subscribing witnesses explained

Glossary Proof of Execution

Glossary Power of Attorney


February 8, 2019

Mission Impossible — Notary Version

Filed under: Humorous Posts — admin @ 7:33 am

Tom Cruise Does His Own Stunts in his Biggest Blockbuster Yet – Mission Impossible: The Notary

Your mission, if you choose to accept it… deal with a difficult signer who wants his family to move and if the signer signs a deed in trust, he’ll be locked into the mortgage and won’t be able to sell the house. You’re Tom Cruise. If they pay you 20 million more than a notary’s salary, you’ll accept anything!

Cut to: Tom is in the middle of a signing in a high rise for a husband and wife. The deranged high school drop out son doesn’t want the family to move. Since the signer would suffer economic consequences if he sold the house within several years of the new mortgage, the son runs in the signing, swipes the Deed of Trust, starts running up the stairs towards the roof and jumps off with his parasail. Tom quickly follows, encounters a rooftop party up there, pushes a reveler off the sofa, hops on the couch and leaps off it even more effectively than he did on the Oprah Winfrey Show couch, landing on the fleeing guy’s parasail just as he jumps off the building.

After the parasail lands, Tom and the son dismount. After a fist fight ensues, the son jumps into his getaway car. Tom hijacks another car with a bumper sticker that reads “Honk if You Hate Scientology.” Suddenly Tom’s eardrums nearly shatter from a whole bunch of cars loudly honking. After Tom notes what they’re honking at, a very, very wide bumper sticker that reads, “Honk if You Hate Signing Companies that take more than sixty days to pay if you’ve already sent two invoices,” Tom gives the other loud honkers the thumbs up and starts loudly honking himself.

Tom keeps following the other bad guy/signer, ending up in an industrial area on a narrow street. The car he’s pursuing is now two hundred feet ahead. With a truck coming toward Cruise at a 90-degree angle, he’ll be blocked unless he wants to shave his roof off! Tom screeches to a halt, rolls under the truck and runs towards the other car now a block ahead of him but blocked by 73 pedestrians on a field trip. The bad guy signer exits his car and starts to run, Tom runs towards him, flings his embosser at the guy’s head, knocks him out and retrieves the deed of trust!

By movie’s end, Tom finishes the signing, drops it at Fed Ex before the cutoff, and then asks the baddie in handcuffs:

“By the way, where did you get that parasail? It was an impressively smooth landing, no jerky motion or anything!”

Bad guy: “I went to Parasailsforless.com!”

Tom’s too rich to buy anything for less.


February 4, 2019

Compilation – Best blog posts from 2010

Filed under: Compilations — admin @ 6:10 am



Funniest things that happen to signing agents

Stories of Notaries who fail and what they did wrong

Confirming the signing

Just say no Article 3



Stories of Notaries who fail and what they did wrong

Bilingual Notaries – how often are they needed?

Business cards for Notaries

Notary etiquette from A to Z

2010 version – everything you need to know about notary advertising

Getting Paid the ins and outs



Welcome to the 123notary Blog

Social Media – what we are doing

Funniest things that happen to signing agents


Confirming the signing

Just say no Article 3

Hospital Notary jobs from A to Z

Everything you need to know about journals

Signature by X

911 and California Law Changes

New laws for Notaries in Illinois

Jail Notary jobs from A to Z

Credible Witnesses – When ID and docs have different names

Typical Things Notaries do Wrong

Meeting clients at a jail

12 points on eNotarizations


February 3, 2019

Credible Witness Notary — information & resources

Here are some links that explain the credible witness process in the Notary profession. Please keep in mind that each state has a different procedure and rules for credible witnesses and a few states don’t allow this practice at all. Please also keep in mind that a Credible Witness for Notary work is also called a Credible identifying witness as their function is to identify signers who lack proper identification.

California Credible Witness Information
There is a long list of things a California Credible Witness must swear to that go above and beyond the identity of the signer. The credible witness must also swear that the signer cannot easily obtain identification. Here are what the CW must swear to:

1. The individual appearing before the notary public as the signer of the document is the person named in the document;

2. The credible witness personally knows the signer;

3. The credible witness reasonably believes that the circumstances of the signer are such that it would be very difficult or impossible for the signer to obtain another form of identification;

4. The signer does not possess any of the identification documents authorized by law to establish the signer’s identity; and general information

5. The credible witness does not have a financial interest and is not named in the document signed.

Please note that the credible witness does not have to swear that the signer has a particular legal name. Shouldn’t that be the whole point of the Oath?

Please refer to page eight and nine of the 2018 California Notary Public Handbook for details.


Information & Resources

Credible witnesses from A to Z

Glossary Entry — Credible Witness

Which states allow credible witnesses?

Credible Witnesses — the process explained

NNA’s guide to credible witnesses

NotaryClasses.com guide to credible witnesses


Credible Witness Notary
California Notary Credible Witness
Credible Witness for Notary
Credible witness california
Credible witness acknowledgment
Credible witness affidavit for California
2 Credible Witnesses
Affidavit of identity by credible witness
CA credible witness requirements
Ca notary 2 credible witnesses
California credible witness Notary
California notary how to acknowledge two credible witnesses
California swearing in a witness
California Notary credible witness form
California Notary Oath of credible witness

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