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January 1, 2018

Following directions is more important than you think

Filed under: Best Practices — admin @ 3:55 am

We quiz people on all types of topics ranging from Notary questions, loan signing questions, to situational questions and following directions. The problem is that only 50% of our seasoned Notaries follow directions and the newer ones only about 25%. These are not good odds if you have something to lose.

People who use 123notary are often title companies or brokers who could lose thousands in commissions or fees if you goof on their loan. Knowing what you are doing (not claiming to know what you are doing but actually knowing) is part of the equation. But, following directions is the other part. Many Notaries just ignore what you say and do what they normally do rather than following directions.

I have two recent stories of brokers who lost large amounts of money because the Notary did not follow directions. One lost $5000 because the Notary did not show the pages in the order he was instructed to. The result was that by the time the signer got to the document that the broker needed signed to get a commission, he no longer wanted to sign. In another case, a broker lost $3500 because the Notary did not follow directions about something else.

Then there are the Notaries who don’t bother to learn how to fill out a certificate form. If you forget to initial a change, the entire loan might be ruined or put on hold. I get so many complaints of Notary mistakes that it isn’t funny. Then there are the Notaries who do not fill out the additional information on a loose acknowledgment, and then the acknowledgment gets attached to a different document. Next thing you know you could end up in court.

So, sloppy work, incorrect work, and not following directions can get you in big trouble fast. Not keeping a good journal could also get you in trouble, but the trouble might not come for years. But, errors on certificates will get you in trouble fast!

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1 Comment »

  1. I feel that the helpful advice is being directed to only one side of the equation.

    Of course following LEGAL directions is important, but not all “directions” are FAIR. New word to consider “fair”. When we receive (at the point of the incoming call) an assignment we either set or agree to a fee. Very often when the docs arrive much more is called for. Some common examples:

    Print the documents three times, complete the package twice; third copy is for borrower.
    The docs are sent as 14 separate PDF files, and we are asked to print 2 copies of form 7854.
    The “work order” says to use black ink, the cover sheet of the documents says blue.
    We receive inaccurate contact information, wrong addresses, with the name spelled wrong.
    We get a call, in route, demanding a document be replaced, with no facility nearby to print it.
    The usual and oft mentioned issue of late, no, or “modified” payment.

    Some instructions go way beyond our role as notaries, casting us to be clerical assistants. An example: Be sure to FAX some things to A, others to B, and a few to C. That is their job, my role is to send the entire package, via FAX once. If they want some docs to go to others they can find and send them.

    A major annoyance is the “cover” sheet. It mentions processing of documents that are not in the package, as determined by looking twice for them. Then a call is made about it “that document only applies to condos, we list it in case the paperwork is for a condo” – thanks, half an hour wasted.

    I could go on and on, the point is that improvements can be made by the originator and sender of the assignment; not just by the notary.

    It would be nice to see a series of blogs covering how to fairly (not just pay) work WITH the notaries. They can do much to “clean up their act” – but that in never mentioned. Why?

    Comment by Kenneth Edelstein — January 1, 2018 @ 4:13 pm

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