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December 7, 2019

Social Media Site for Notaries – JuratBook

Filed under: Social Media — admin @ 7:39 am

Welcome to JuratBook, a social media site for Notaries. Notaries typically use this to complain about slow paying signing companies, and boast about how good their 123notary listing is doing.

With JuratBook, you can post an unlimited amount of special notary emoji’s on your posts. The surprised emoji would be if you got paid on time. The sad emoji would be if there were too many fax backs. A heart emoji would be because you love Jeremy and Carmen. A thumbs up (or thumb prints up) would be if you either liked a particular signing company, or if you thumb printed someone.

You can take selfies of you and your customers and post them. You can talk about what you do when you are not notarizing.

The problem with JuratBook is that it makes people more competitive about how popular they are. It makes you think your life isn’t as full as all these other people with lots of postings who celebrate life every day.

Unlike Facebook, you can use hateful speech on JuratBook. It has to be allowed, because Notaries are so frustrated by not getting paid on time. JuratBook believes in freedom of speech.

The algorithm used for JuratBook helps promote posts more about the social aspects of being a Notary rather than dull work related posts.

What constitutes JuratBook friendship? Do you have to notarize each other? Or have each other’s thumb print? The rules keep changing as the owner Sam Zuckerberg — Mark’s lesser known and less successful brother.

JuratBook — your social media venue!

You might also like:

Affiant – a social media site for notaries
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=6410

Yes, it’s the Notary dating show
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=15312

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December 6, 2018

Jurat – Definition

A Jurat is a Notary act where the signer or affiant must sign and swear (or affirm), both in the presence of the Notary Public. The signer gets to choose whether they wish to swear under God under Oath or affirm on their honor — both acts are done under the penalty of perjury.

Jurats are the second most common Notary act next to Acknowledgments.

There is no prescribed Oath verbiage, however, the word swear should be used, and there should be a reference to the truthfulness of the document. The Notary could have the affiant raise their right hand and ask, “Do you solemnly swear under God and under the penalty of perjury that this document is true and correct to the best of your knowledge?”

A Jurat also requires a Jurat certificate. And the certificate must confirm to state specific rules and have state specific verbiage. Verbiage differs from state to state, but the language, “Subscribed and sworn to before me by (name) on (date)” is common.

Related Links

Jurat wording step by step
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=7875

What is a Jurat?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=6937

Notary verbiage for Jurats
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=2088

Notary Public Information
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20075

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October 17, 2013

Jurat Wording Step by Step

Jurat Wording

Wording for Jurat Notarizations can vary from state to state. The main thing to understand in Jurat wording is that it must state that the signer appeared before the notary, signed the document before the notary, and swore under oath before the notary.

Additionally, Jurat wording or Jurat verbiage will indicate the date of the notarial act or transaction as well as a venue which constitutes the state and county where the notarial act took place!

You can typically use out of state Jurat verbiage so long as the wording is not substantially different from the Jurat wording in your state. Check with your state’s notary law handbook to verify this point.

A Jurat form could have room for a hand written statement which the signer swears to under Oath. Or, you can attach a Jurat certificate to a document which is being notarized and stamp the certificate instead of the actual document.

Signers are typically asked to raise their right hand and swear under oath during a Jurat notarization. The notary will ask an Oath question using his/her/its own choice of wording. The signer is asked to give a clear oral affirmation to that question. Most Notaries are not well practiced in the art of administering Oaths and it is recommended that they practice giving Oaths before going out in the real world notarizing for people.

Jurats are the 2nd most common type of Notary act, Acknowledgments being the 1st most common.

You might also like:

Jurat definition and a string of other Jurat related posts
http://blog.123notary.com/?s=jurat

Notarizing Children
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=6947

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August 21, 2013

What is a Jurat?

Many people do not fully understand what a Jurat is. The term Jurat is loosely (and incorrectly) used to describe any notarial form. “Just mail me a Jurat” is a common request (that happens to be illegal). Never mail loose certificates. A Jurat is one of many types of notarial acts. Common notary acts include: Acknowledgments, Jurats, Oaths, Affirmations, Protests, and some states allow witnessing, safety box opening, Proofs of Execution and other notary acts. Notary acts and laws differ from state to state.

A Jurat is a Notary Act that typically requires the signer to be identified, although laws in the past in many states did not require the signer to be identified (believe it or not).

The distinguishing characteristic of a Jurat is that it has an accompanying Oath — AND the signer must sign the document before the Notary Public. An Acknowledged signature may be signed hours, days or years before it is notarized! The wording for the Oath is up to the notary. Unfortunately, many notaries are not very good at administering Oaths and some skip the procedure altogether (which is illegal).

You can attach Jurat wording to a document. Or, just write a quick statement that you intend to swear to on a Jurat form. But, if you need an Acknowledgment certificate, don’t ask for “A Jurat”. It is not the same thing legally. Also, please note that the notary is legally forbidden from deciding what type of notarization you need. So, if your Attorney or document custodian doesn’t tell you what type of notarization you need, please ask them before the notary shows up! Good luck!

Tweets:
(1) The term Jurat is loosely (and incorrectly) used to describe any notarial form.
(2) “Just mail me a Jurat,” is a common, but illegal request!
(3) A #Jurat is a notary act requiring the signer 2sign before the notary, swear & be identified.

You might also like:

Basic Notary Acts – Notary Public 101
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19500

Jurat Definition
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21342

Jurat wording step by step
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=7875

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January 23, 2011

California Acknowledgment and Jurat Information

To see current 2011 & 2012 California Acknowledgment wording  information and California Jurat verbiage  information, just visit:
http://www.123notary.com/California/acknowledgment_jurat.asp

California Acknowledgments & California Jurats

Notary laws are often based on antiquated social customs and laws.  Many notary laws in Louisiana are based on the old Spanish and French laws which make it extremely different from the rest of the United States.  Louisiana is sort of a foreign country controlled by our government.  The language is English, but the laws are not.  California notary law used to have some old rules too for identifying a signer
 
In olden times, people lived in smaller communities, traveled less, and had less access to the outside world.  In those days you knew your neighbors and knew them well.  California notary laws and laws in many states allowed a notary to use personal knowledge of an individual as a way to identify them for a notarization.  But, in 2011 with people flying all around, and nobody really knowing anyone, you can not really use personal knowledge as an identifying technique anymore.  People don’t even know their wives and children that well these days! After 9/11, the laws changed in many states.  It took a few years for the state governments to react, but standards for identification were raised.  You can still identify signers using credible witnesses which I feel is false identification. The credible witnesses don’t really usually know the signer that well, and have to be reminded of the signer’s name in many cases.  The most common form of identification is a driver’s license, state ID card, or password. 
 
In any case, California notary laws for identifying a signer for an acknowledged signature are tougher now that personal knowledge is not allowed.  But, signers also need to be identified for Jurats which never used to be the case.  In the last few years, the California notary wording or California notary Verbiage for Acknowledgment and Jurat forms has changed a little bit as well.
 
Oaths and Affirmations in California have now become a merged act.  You just choose whether you want it to be an affirmation or oath in the paperwork. 
 
 
You might also like: 

Notary Public 101 – basic notary acts including Acknowledgments
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19500

Notary Acknowledgment Information
 
Can a California notary be a witness?

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January 19, 2011

2013 Notary Wording for Jurats and Acknowledgments

2012 & 2013 Notary Jurat Wording / 2012 & 2013 Notary Acknowledgment Wording
 
Notary verbiage and notary wording for Jurat and Acknowledgment certificates is different across state boundaries and also changes over time.  If you want to see current 2013 notary verbiage for notary certificates, we have information for various states.
 
Information about Notary verbiage for:
Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New York, Ohio, and Texas  We will have information for more states in the future.
 
Please check your state’s notary division’s website for more information about notary verbiage on certificates if your state wasn’t mentioned on our list.

In the future, we might have Acknowledgment and Jurat information for:

Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, DC, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

You might also like:

Notary Certificates, Notary Wording & Notary Verbiage
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=1834

Notary Boiler Plate Wording
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=2432

Make your own notary certificate forms
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=1759

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June 10, 2021

Comments on good journal entry procedure

Filed under: Journals — admin @ 3:09 am

I have written thorough information on journal keeping in other articles. But, here is a summary of some of the more critical points.

1. KEEP A JOURNAL – or else. Even if your state does not require you to keep a journal, it is your only evidence if investigated by the FBI or if summoned to appear before a Judge. This happens more than you think to Notaries so be prepared and keep records in a journal.

2. Don’t forget to enter the type of NOTARY ACT that you are performing in the journal. This is generally a Jurat, Acknowledgment, Oath or Affirmation. Copy Certification might be considered a Jurat in some states, but you could put both names to be thorough.

3. Obviously enter the ID INFORMATION in your journal unless you live in a state that forbids that. Otherwise you have no evidence that you looked at their ID. Make sure the photo looks like them and that the signature on the ID matches the one in the journal and the document. If you want to get cute, ask them their sign and see if it matches their birthday.

4. THUMBPRINTS are almost foolproof. ID’s can be faked, but all thumbprints in the planet are unique to a particular individual. To deter fraud and help the FBI catch very very bad people (and yes we have stories from 123notary members about exactly this.) then keep a thumbprint for all notarized documents in your journal. NNA sells a nice journal with room for thumbprints and you need an inkless thumbprint pad too which is not expensive.

5. DOCUMENT DATES
Most people don’t know what a document date is or what it means. It is an arbitrary date inscribed within the document which normally corresponds to the date the document was drafted or signed. It is yet another indication of which document you are dealing with, just in case you notarize two documents from the same signer with the same document name.

6. SIGNATURES
Signers must sign all journal entries that pertain to documents that they are being notarized on.

7. PRICES. The price you are charging the signers should be indicated in the journal. If you are charging a travel fee, or a flat fee for a mobile signing, indicate this somehow in your records, perhaps on the top entry of a particular signing.

8. ADDITIONAL NOTES? The NNA journal has a section for additional notes. If you have credible witnesses, they sign there. If you notice anything unusual about the signing, write it down as that could jog your memory when you are in court several years after the fact. It is hard to remember all of your signings and roughly 15% of our full-time Notaries who have been around for several years have been to court due to Notary related reasons.

9. STORAGE. Keep your used journals in a safe and dry place. You might get a query for an old journal entry and you need to be able to find them. Your Notary division might want your journals if you quit your commission or you expire, so keep them where you can find them where nobody will steal them.

That’s all for today!

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April 22, 2021

Commentary on NNA’s post about accepting tips

Filed under: Business Tips — admin @ 8:26 am

In the NNA blog, they published a very nicely written document about whether or not it is ethical to accept tips as a Notary Public. The law seems to omit covering this point.

An improper influence?
NNA’s position (I can see them asking me to not mention them in my blogs within hours of when this is published, but here goes) is that you should NOT accept tips as it could be seen as an improper influence.

Here is my commentary

In-house services
If you are providing in-house Notary services, there is a state maximum for which you can charge. In california it is $15 for an Acknowledgment or Jurat. You cannot ask for more than that. If someone gives you a gift of an extra tip, it seems a little questionable to me. On the one hand you are in the clear in certain ways since you did not ask for that extra money. On the other hand, you violated the maximum fee in a sense. In this situation, I agree with the NNA that it would be better not to accept a tip.

Mobile services (not called out-house unless you really need to go.)
If you are providing mobile notary services and your state doesn’t have any Marxist restrictions on your liberty to determine your own pricing, in my opinion, the customer can offer you any type of tip they like. You are not restricted in any way as there is no price fixing for mobile work in most states (there are nine states or so that do have restrictions.)

Any small tip could be construed as an influence, one perhaps for more favorable scheduling and service next time around. However, it doesn’t seem credible as a bribe to be coerced into doing something illegal or unethical like backdating or falsifying someone’s identity. Bribes for those types of illegal services would be in the tens of thousands and not an extra $5. An extra $10 is an innocent way of saying thank you and we value you, not a bribe.

One of the greatest joys as a mobile notary is to get one of those wealthy, generous and charismatic clients who is flamboyant in the praises and gifts that they give you. If you are a Notary who makes their life easy and pleasant, you deserve those gifts in my opinion. Notaries have been given gift certificates, movie passes, boxes of chocolates, and more. As an in-house Notary, it is slightly questionable and “safer” as the NNA claims not to accept this gift. But, it is not illegal to accept a gift from someone and you might offend them or hurt their feelings if you don’t.

So, I respectfully agree, while disagreeing with the NNA on this issue, but I do respect their correct idea that it is “safer” not to accept gifts. It’s also safer for a ship never to leave the harbor, but then what good is it being a ship if you just sit there collecting barnacles?

Here is the original post and it’s interesting
https://www.nationalnotary.org/notary-bulletin/blog/2019/11/should-notaries-accept-tips-and-gratuities?utm_campaign=bulletin20201207&utm_medium=sociall&utm_source=facebook&utm_content=AcceptingTips&fbclid=IwAR33D11k5wLBj4_3GdrAdGGfhPmJZI8xO0NanYQFKE9M_IZ3wL7XpXTkhJI

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April 12, 2021

10 things you need to know as a Signing Agent

Filed under: Best Practices — admin @ 7:28 am

Most people are confused when they begin their career as a Notary signing agent. They don’t know what they need to learn or do, or how to get clients. Those in the business for many years have the opposite problem. They think they know everything while they know very little — at least when I test them. Here is what I think Notaries should learn and how to learn it.

1. Be a good Notary. What does that entail?
You need to know the rules for each notary act and how to fill out forms. You also need to know how to administer Oaths correctly and few Notaries do this well or take it seriously. You can lose your commission if a judge finds out you didn’t give an Oath on any particular Affidavit, Jurat or sworn statement that you notarized. It is easy to learn how to do this, but few make it their business to know their job. Read your state’s notary manual regularly. You can also read blogs from NNA, 123notary or other Notary agencies. But, your state notary division is gospel, and the agencies are sometimes wrong — so treat their information as commentary. Keeping a journal is also imperative, because when you are in court, and 15% of serious Notaries end up before a judge sooner or later, your journal is your only evidence. The more thoroughly you keep your journal, the happier the judge will be with you. If you identify someone incorrectly or carelessly you might be empowering an imposter to steal a house from someone or commit fraud. We teach all of these points on our blog on Notary Public 101.

Summary of point 1.
Understanding All applicable Notary Acts, Identification procedures, Journal procedure, and Oaths are the bedrock of being a good Notary.

2. Understand The Right to Cancel
Residential owner occupied Refinances typically have a Right to Rescind document. Understanding how to date this document properly is not rocket science, but experienced Notaries flake and goof and get the dates wrong when I test them on a regular basis. It is not rocket sciencem, and no, the NASA website doesn’t cover this, it is a matter of counting to three and not counting Sundays or Federal Holidays.

3. Understand FAQ’s about loan signing.
When is my first payment due?
Where is my rate, APR?
Do I have a prepayment penalty and where is it?
Where are my closing costs and fees itemized?
Do I have to send a check or other documents not included in the package?
How long can I read my borrower’s copies before rescinding
How do I cancel my loan?

Many Notaries feel that they need to be experts at all of the documents. As a general rule, you should know the difference between the Correction Agreement LPOA and a Compliance Agreement, although there are so many variations in these documents that they are all different and you have to read each one — but, being familiar and knowledgeable about these document variations pays off as this is a FAQ that people are concerned about. Most loan signing courses go over this information and you should memorize this as people at signings will ask about it.

4. Understanding Reverse Mortgages, TRID, Helocs, Purchases, etc.
LSS’s course seems to do the best job teaching these types of loans (or documents) that are new in popularity over the last few years. Most signing courses were written ten or twenty years ago when Reverse Mortgages either didn’t exist or were not a popular item. Since as a Notary, you are not allowed to explain the terms of a person’s loan, but only allowed to help signers find information within the loan, it is NOT critical to understand these loans or documents, but make you look good if you did. So consider point four to be a plus, but not a necessity.

5. Explain or don’t explain
In our various blog courses we go over point by point what a Notary should explain or not explain. The 30 point course discusses this in detail. This is critical because otherwise you might get yourself in trouble talking about what you have no business of talking about. Or you might talk about something you know nothing about. Or, you might not answer a question which you should know the answer and express the answer about. Boy, this is complicated.

6. How to find new clients
There are many ways. We write about this in the marketing section of our blog, but you might have to scroll.

7. How to background screen clients
Not all clients are pleasant or pay on time. Use the 123notary or Notary Rotary forum to see which companies are worth working for. Please be informed that in the last two years there has been a drastic decline in forum commentary on our forum and on NotaryRotary’s, although theirs is much more well trafficked than ours. There is less quantity of reliable information about the various signing companies. But, still do your research.

8. How to collect from clients
Some people don’t pay on time, so you have to know how to keep records, how to bill people, and how to threaten them the right way if they keep you waiting for payment. We go over this in our courses.

9. Where to learn about general information
You should read the various blogs out there. NNA and 123notary have interesting blogs where you can learn and source information from antiquated entries on particular topics.

10. How to handle tricky situations
In Notary Public 101 we go over many sticky situations and explain how to think about them and how to handle them. Understanding this content makes you a more confident, trustworthy and safe Notary! It’s like a vaccine made out of knowledge!

Further Reading
As a general rule, I recommend getting certified by various entities, not just one. I recommend Notary Public 101 and the 30 Point Course in our blog as well as reading our blog articles about marketing and notarial issues in particular. LSS offers a very practical course that is more sensitive to what is going on in the industry now. Notary2Pro seems to churn out the best trained Notaries of any certification. 123notary has the hardest certification test and passing it will prove yourself better than the other certifications.

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December 26, 2020

Squirrel Becomes Notary Public?

Filed under: Ken Edelstein — admin @ 12:47 pm

Not really, but in the “second time” redo of failed to fund packages; affiants have more than once told me a squirrel could have done a better job. Why is this? It’s not that the notaries don’t know how to notarize; they have problems with related responsibilities. By analogy, becoming a parent involves a relatively simple procedure. Being a good parent is much more complicated.

[She] / He who has imagination without learning, has wings and no feet. — Joseph Joubert
Substitute “Notary Commission” for “imagination” – that describes the situation for many. It’s not difficult to deliver perfection. It does take dedication and an intense desire for the “self gratification” that comes from delivering personal best. When you complete that assignment does it make you feel really good? It should. Knowing that no one, yes, no one could have done a better job should give the Notary a feeling of Pride, and “inner glow” of self satisfaction.

Learning can’t replace experience; but the reverse is also true. In addition to the basic Notary functions (ID check, Jurat/Acknowledgement, Oath, Stamp, Emboss) there is much knowledge to be acquired. Many simply don’t know how to communicate efficiently; neither giving nor receiving accurate and appropriate information succinctly. If you answer the phone with an all too often “hello”; the caller needs to ask “who is this”. Better would be “Good Afternoon, my name is Sally; how may I help you”. Do you need to send 3 emails because you did not ask all the questions in your first? Rest assured the “other side” is forming the “klutz” image of you.

You should have business cards, they are cheap enough. It’s a good practice to “sign your work” by placing your card at the top of the pile. Affix it with a binder clip, never just shove loose pages into a shipping envelope. Then, if someone has a question it’s easy for them to reach you. And, they have your “advertisement” so they know how to reach you for the next assignment. Try to always use stiff cardboard shipping envelopes, not the floppy ones.

Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. My assignment tomorrow is for a loan package with both husband and wife signing. She is bedridden – they will make the process very slow. I will bring a clipboard for husband to bring pages; one at a time, to wife for her signatures and initials. Not knowing for sure the ailment; I will keep away, but be sure to actually witness the fact that she did indeed sign where necessary. It will probably take quite some time as she is a co-borrower and signs almost all pages. Some are easy, some are hard. Last week I had a 9 page job for my standard fee; it took 5 minutes. It averages out. Don’t develop an attitude when things go slowly – like the classic sign in the coffee shop: Don’t complain about the coffee, someday you too will be old and weak. With an eye to self preservation by avoiding sickness – we can and should do everything possible to accommodate those “less fit” than ourselves.

Lastly, be of good cheer. Nobody likes to work with a sourpuss. A smile and a few kind words will help the process go smoothly, for all concerned. Most people will “reflect” the way you act in their behavior to you, so be pleasant in the face of difficult situations. When you handle that “tough” one – detail what you did when asking for a review; you will often receiving a glowing one!

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