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May 15, 2020

Notaries over 60

Filed under: General Stories — admin @ 9:48 pm

Since my Notaries over 50 blog article was so popular, I am writing another one that is similar.

Viruses
Notaries over 60 need to be careful about the Coronavirus which partakes in ageism. It kills mainly elderly people and people from cultures that eat noodles like Italians and Chinese (not sure why). Personally, I think this disease is prejudiced against people who live in cold weather and I think the disease is racist! Washing your hands regularly and using disinfecting wipes on all surfaces at signings, in your home and car make sense. The regular flue also kills many elderly people, so being extra cautious about your immunity and health makes sense.

Bad Weather
Avoiding signings during inclement weather makes sense too. At your age do you want to be caught in a freezing rain storm? Think about it.

Stairs
Going up long flights of stairs might be hazardous to your health depending on how good your health is.

Exercise
Getting plenty of non-impact exercise is critical. If you want to live to be old and healthy, lots of swimming and walking should be a daily habit. Jogging and exercise that puts strain on your joints might come back to haunt you in your old age.

Diet
A good diet with lots of fruit, vegetables and supplements makes sense as well. My article about Notaries over 50 goes in detail about which foods are miracles for good health.

Sleep
It is necessary to get enough sleep so you are not cranky or susceptible to disease. However, elderly people sometimes sleep less than others. What a paradox. Get enough sleep just to remain healthy and have a good immunity system.

Acupuncture
Acupuncture is a way to balance your energy channels in your body. It also helps to strengthen immunity and deal with aches and pains.

Keeping a sharp mind
Mental atrophe is a problem for people getting older. It is important to review Notary educational materials, your state handbook, and do mental exercises to keep sharp. Grape juice and grape seed extra help to keep the cobwebs out of your cerebral neurons. A good mind has a physical aspect as well as an intellectual. Keep this in mind so that you don’t get mentally fuzzy.

Lutein
Good eyes are important. Americans don’t eat enough orange foods, but those are good for the eyes along with good circulation. The eyes need blood too, so if the blood doesn’t slow, they will suffer. Carrots, pumpkin, sweet potatoes and yams are some excellent sources of orange foods. These are also good for the spleen. Spinach also has lots of vitamin A for your eyes and it can be put in juice mixes, but is not good as a solo in a juice. I try to each orange foods at least once per day or at least a few times a week for my spleen and eyes.

Don’t retire – just slow down
People who retire just die according to research. So, if you don’t want to die, don’t retire. Just do less. People in one of the Greek islands where people live to be 100 frequently all have community responsibilities, hike by necessity, have a mainly plant based diet, and live near the ocean so they get that ocean vibe which helps people relax.

Get health energies
The forest, ocean and desert all have healthy energies. These can help you feel better and perhaps live longer. I visit these places regularly. Trees and flowers or gardens can also have healing energy as the plants have metaphysical properties. Stay healthy by getting external sources of good qi so you can make it to 70.

Socialize
This might be hard if you live in Los Angeles. But, if you live in a normal state where people have human values (like Texas or Montana) you might find others who like to socialize. For those who live in California, it might make sense to find people out of state to socialize with – just trying to be realistic.

Let me know if you guys can think of other tips for the 60+ crowd.

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May 7, 2020

Oaths must be signed by the Notary

Filed under: Technical & Legal — admin @ 9:40 am

I read in page 28 of the California Notary handbook that Oaths must be signed by the Notary. How do you sign a verbal act? Jurats must be signed and have a form and place to sign. But, an Oath is a purely verbal act with no accompanying paperwork at least in California. I am stumped. Can someone explain what I am missing?

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April 7, 2020

Lose the attitude…

Filed under: Carmen Towles — admin @ 8:46 am

Many notaries come to me for advise and assistance with notary and loan signing procedures. On occasion I get folks that have a chip on their shoulder for whatever reason. I know this ’notary signing agent business’ can be perplexing and just plain hard to break into. The main problem is that most folks that come into to this profession are not sufficiently trained in their states notarial procedures. So when notaries reach out with questions it is for some of the most basic notarial acts. Things truthfully, they should just know. This is the Secretary of States job which most have failed miserably. Many states don’t have any examples of where to place their stamp or even how to fill out an acknowledgment or jurat but many do and its worth it to look into their handbooks to check.

On this particular occasion, a notary texted me a copy of a jurat and had no clue as to where to place her seal despite the fact to me at least it was obvious that these was a ton of space to the left of her signature. She asked me if this is where she ws to affix her seal. I wrote back 2 word only; ‘Ummm, yes’. I mean where else would you put it. It was the most basic part of her job that she should know. She wrote back quite annoyed that how was she supposed to know this?, blah, blah, blah. Well, how about for starters, getting your notary handbook out and giving it a try, Most folks just focus on loan signing without preparing for what’s really important. THE NOTARIZATIONS!!!

She went on to rant in a text that this is why folks are afraid to ask questions. Well guess what?, you better ask questions. Being a notary can be costly for you and the person you are notarizing signature on documents for. She stated that I sounded annoyed and she was sorry to bother me and that was that. Folks getting an attitude is not helping the situation at all. You had better get all your questions answered and know what you are doing BEFORE you touch anybody’s documents for your sake and theirs. If you don’t ,you will pay the price in more ways than one. And if a little “Ummm”, was enough to set you off then maybe you need to rethink this whole notary signing agent thing.

Why anybody wants to get into this profession without knowing everything about it is beyond me.

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March 29, 2020

Two notarizations same document..yes or no?

Filed under: Carmen Towles — admin @ 8:45 am

As I often do, I read the notary discussion boards. It’s often entertainenlightening and full of situations that we are faced with to deal with almost on a daily basis. Most of them you share personally with me but this was a new one. A few days ago, the topic was about a notary that had a document that had one signature but two notarizations on the same page; One, was an Acknowledgement and the other a Jurat. The notary choose to notarize only one (don’t know which one they choose and they shouldn’t have done this but that is another issue) and the underwriter rejected it and sent it back for completion of the other notarial certificate. It seems that they wanted BOTH the acknowledgement and the jurat completed. The notary said NO and stated that it was one signature per notarial certificate. And since they had only signed once she refused to notarize both. And, although it sounded about right because most of us feel that it is one signature per notarization. After all, that is how we charge clients. In this case the certificates are different. One requires a sworn oath to be given and the other is just an acknowledgment on the part of the signer. I still wondered about this. Where is written in anybodies handbook that states that you can’t do one signature and have two different type of notarial certificates?

In my opinion, It seems that the lender and/or title was covering there rear end. Perhaps they couldn’t choose so they just decided to put both.The problem would have been easy if they had the signer sign one for each certificate. What ever the case its a decision that you have to make. It seems the notaries are split on this. I personally have seen this a couple times and I just notarize both. And enter into my journal.The question is what would you do?

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January 31, 2020

Oaths need to be signed?

Filed under: California_Notary — admin @ 11:39 am

I have heard from my sources that Oaths, Affirmations and Depositions all need to be signed by the Notary in California. This is on page 28 in the 2019 handbook near the top of the page.

But, how do you sign an Oath? An Oath is given in thin air? Unless you have a certificate stating that you gave an Oath. Or if the Oath is part of a document that is signed by all parties. Hmm. This is very odd. I wonder if any of our members have ever signed an Oath. Most of our Notaries don’t even know how to give Oaths correctly. Please let me know.

BTW, there is suggested verbiage for Jurat Oaths in the 2019 handbook on page 12. You can improvise upon it as there is no official verbiage.

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January 22, 2020

The Notary with Cleavage

Filed under: Drama & Tragedy — admin @ 10:39 am

Yes, this is a true story. I did not meet the notary myself. But, someone on my directory did. The person on my directory needed to be notarized. And as you know, a notary cannot notarize themselves even if they have dual personality disorder, or rather, especially if they have a multiple personality disorder (they should put that one in the handbook — I’ll write to the Sec of State.)

There is a Notary who is very busy who goes to appointments showing lots of cleavage. She hands out a black and pink business card at the end of appointments. I wonder if she bends over in front of the client while affixing her stamp.

I’m not sure if this is a good business strategy or not. I think if you have mortgage company clients, they might complain if you are too sexy. We had a complaint about one of our clients up North who wore her disco outfit to a signing. But, for what Carmen and I call, “General notary work” where you just notarize a document or two for an individual, this dress code might be okay, especially if you have male clients.

I remember fifteen years ago we had a sixty year old client who promoted herself by saying, “Call me if you want a beautiful blond to notarize you.” I guess at sixty, some ladies still got it.

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January 14, 2020

Where do you get your Notary information from?

Filed under: Best Practices — admin @ 9:29 am

Carmen tells me regularly how Notaries get information from random sources on the internet or from other Notaries who don’t know what they are doing. This is dangerous. You are legally responsible for the notary work you do. If you do your work wrong, you can get in trouble with your notary division or in trouble with the law. Therefore, it makes sense that you get your information from reliable sources.

NNA and 123notary publish a lot of notary information online. We are generally well informed and well intentioned. But, there are instances when our information is out of date, unclear, misinterpreted, or just plain wrong.

Getting information from Facebook groups, or other Notaries is a horrible idea because I test Notaries, and most of them score about 30% on Notary knowledge. If you are getting your information from others who would probably score 30%, how reliable do you believe their information would be?

Get your information from your State Notary Division. They are legally responsible for publishing information regarding your state’s notary laws, procedures, forms, etc. Even getting information by phone from the notary division is risky, because they could tell you anything. Look for what is in writing for the safest results.

And remember, even the best Notary teachers out there are wrong about one or two things. I know this because I test them and they are not always right on certain hard to understand or nit-picky things (such as credible witnesses for example.) I am sometimes wrong about notary issues as well, although my track record is quite good overall.

So, get your information from the source itself because you could get yourself and others in trouble if you don’t. Additionally, many states have horrible handbooks with very incomplete information about certain topics. In that case, you can refer to other more reliable sources like well established notary organizations which might do a good job explaining some of the less understood notary acts such as Oaths!

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October 3, 2019

Help!…getting a divorced but husband has my stamp!

Filed under: Carmen Towles — admin @ 11:19 pm

Got a call form a frantic notary that is in the mist of a seemingly nasty divorce. She has a question and it is obvious right away that she is clueless as to what her notary laws are. She states that she may be calling the wrong place but her husband has her seal. She also wants to know if she is still an active notary? I’m thinking; “Oh boy”. I told her first off lets address the fact that you should know that your seal an journali (if required or not to keep one) is to remain with YOU at ALL TIMES in a secure locked location and secondly, you should be fully aware whether your commission is active or not. I mean if she doesn’t know (besides the SOS who would know) And, I am sure they will think it odd of her to be asking. I can’t for the life of me understand why folks are so lax and nonchalant with their seals. The power of the seal is enormous. It can create havoc on peoples lives and cause many financial problems.

In my humble opinion, it seems to me that if you are going to take on such a responsibility being a notary public that you would try at the very least to learn everything you can about being a notary public for your state. There are what I call the ‘rules of engagement’ and one should do their best to know them. Once you become a notary public you are considered a government official and you need to know what you ‘can and cannot do’. There are rules to be followed and you should know them.

It really terrifies me that we have thousands of notaries throughout the county that have no clue of what they are doing. They just tell me that they want to make a quick buck, or its just a side hustle or I just what to do loans. There is way more to being a notary then making a fast buck, etc. There can be financial devastation to you and/or others if you don’t know what you are doing. If you mess up someones paperwork it will be on you. And if you leave your stamp just laying around ‘willy nilly and it is used for fraud god forbid that to, will be on you. So for her to leave her stamp with her soon to be ex-husband was IMO gross negligence and I told her so. I recommended that she contact her husband immediately and secure her seal and journal (if he had that as well).

Please folks read your handbooks and learn all you can. It’s WAY more to being a notary than making a fast buck or side money….

You might also like:

My stolen identity and fraudulent notary seal
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20753

Notary Public Seal
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21411

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September 28, 2019

For God’s sake take a notary class. (if you can find one)

Filed under: Carmen Towles — admin @ 11:15 pm

Got a call today from a new notary in Texas with a question. The first thing I ask her was how long she had been a notary. She is brand new-only a couple of months. I let her know (just like everyone else) that she needs to know her notary laws. She was not aware that this was of the utmost importance but then none of the new notaries do. They are foccused on loan signing. Never realizing that without basic knowledge of their notary laws they will fail and make countless errors. Definitely not a good way to start a business. So while we were talking, another notary called in. I ask her to hold and answered the call. Ironically, it just so happened to be another notary also from Texas that had a question on how to fill out a notary acknowledgment. She tells me that she pulled an acknowledgment off the internet and was perplexed as to how to fill it out.

I let her know, I just so happened to have another notary from Texas on the phone and it might be a teaching moment for the both of them and would she mind if I merged her into our conversation since they both were new ( I assumed this based on the question she was asking) and from Texas. She readily agreed and I merged the calls. I introduced them to one another and then asked the notary who had the acknowledgment question to to proceed with her question.

The notary had received an assignment to print a 3-4 page document, travel to the signer, have him sign, notarize and scan back to the attorney for a fee of 80.00. (decent fee btw.) She completed the assignment but for some reason (it is not clear why) she gave the notarized page to the signer. When she returned home from the job she realized her error and proceeded to find an acknowledgment certificate online and was trying to fill it out. I asked he how long she had been a notary and she stated that she had been a notary sine 1988. No disrespect to her but I find that to be a little disingenuous and very hard to believe considering the circumstances. To be a notary that long you would know what to do.

First off why she gave the notary acknowledgement to the client speaks volumes on its own. This is a rookie move; a person who has no clue as to what they are doing. Secondly, to not know how to fill out the notarial section is another rookie move. I told her that she should really consult her handbook as to what goes where. Hopefully, they address how to fill out a notarial certificate. I also let her know that she could take a picture of the acknowledgement and I would be more than happy to go through it with her. However, her best option would be to get off the phone with me and call the signer and go back and get the original acknowledgment certificate she had left with him. As of this writing, I have not heard back from her. Hopefully, for her sake, she got it all figured out.

The other notary remained silent until I let the other notary go. And she too now understood that she was also in the same position. She knows nothing about where to put what on a notarial certificate or just being a notary in general. I told her to also try and find a notary class and read her handbook cover to cover. Learn it-know it. If you are good notary you will be a great signing agent. After all the whole reason you would be called on to do closing/signings in the first place starts with you being a commissioned notary for your state. And guess what, they expect you to know your job. PERIOD. If you don’t know what you are doing you are just asking for trouble. So read and learn up like your life depended on it. Because guess what- it does.

You might also like:

Notary Public Education
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21413

Notary Public 101 from 123notary!
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19493

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August 10, 2019

Foreign language documents (California)

Filed under: Carmen Towles — admin @ 11:30 pm

I get calls weekly from the public about notaries in California giving them a hard time with documents in a foreign language. Many California notaries are turning folks away (most of the time in error) because they are under the impression that they can’t notarize a document in a foreign language. The notaries feel that if they can’t read it, they shouldn’t notarize it. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Please read your handbook. You can find this information in the 2019 California Notary Handbook, page 20.

California notaries you can and must notarize any document presented in a foreign language provided you can communicate with the signer. What this means is that if the document is in Spanish (and providing all other conditions are met; such as personal appearance, have current picture government issued ID, etc. are presented) and you CAN communicate in either English and/or Spanish you must notarize their document. You don’t need to be able to read the document. Notaries notarize signatures on documents not the contents of the document. Period.

However, if you are presented with a document in a foreign language and they ONLY speak that language and you don’t speak their language you CANNOT notarize the document. You would then need to refer them to a notary that speaks their language.

Remember, don’t analyze, notarize.

You might also like:

How do I get a foreign language document notarized?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18788

Affidavit of support and direct communication with the signer
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=7084

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