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April 29, 2019

Identification for prison notarizations

Filed under: Hospital & Jail Signings — admin @ 10:06 am

Identification for prison notarizations

1. Inmate ID Cards
In Florida and California, there is such thing as inmate ID cards or an inmate identification card. These are issued by the Department of Justice of Bureau of Federal Prisons.

2. Wristbands
In other states, sometimes the Notary can use a wristband. But, that is subject to the laws of your state, so you will have to consult your state’s notary manual online.

3. Credible Witnesses
Credible Witnesses may be used to identify a person in many states. You need to ask the Notary Public who you intend to use what the rules are in your state for Credible Identifying Witnesses. Many states will allow two individuals who know the signer to vouch for the identity of the signer under Oath before a Notary Public and will allow this as a substitute for having proper identification.

4. Regular Identification Cards
Ideally, if you can find a current identification of the signer and bring it with you to the jail, this will make it a lot easier for the Notary to notarize the signer.

5. Guards
Guards at jails are normally helpful about passing the journal through the slit in the glass to the signer. However, they very rarely want to be involved in identifying inmates as a credible witness.

6. Thumbprinting
It is generally a good idea to thumbprint signers in the notary journal. Most Notaries do not do this, but it is prudent as you cannot fake a thumbprint and it is forensic evidence that can be used to prove the identity of the signer if the signing is ever investigated.

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April 7, 2019

Inmate Identification Cards

For years, it has been difficult for Notaries to notarize inmates in jail or prison due to the fact that their wristband did not constitute an identification acceptable to many states. The problem has been solved in California and Florida.

California has an inmate identification card
A California Notary may accept an inmate identification card issues by the state Department of Correction and Rehabilitation.

Florida also has an inmate identification card
Florida allows Notaries to accept inmate ID cards issued by the U.S. Department of Justice or Bureau of Federal Prisons.

These forms of identification are reported to be acceptable for use by Notaries Public in their respective states. It would be nice if the other states would come up to speed as well and provide a legal means for identifying inmates.

California inmate identification card
California inmate ID card
Florida inmate identification card
Florida inmate ID card
Can you notarize an inmate with a wristband identification?
How do you identify an inmate in prison or jail?

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October 17, 2017

Notary Public 101 — Identification

Return to table of contents for Notary Public 101.

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IDENTIFICATION

As a Notary Public, the most important thing you do is to identify a signer. Different states have different rules for what identification document you can use and how someone is to be identified. If a Notary fails to do a good job identifying a signer, that Notary can quickly end up in court as a witness or defendant. In my opinion if you don’t do a good job identifying signers, you might as well not be a Notary Public.

Identification Documents & Characteristics
Commonly accepted ID’s include passports, driver’s licenses, state issued ID cards, military ID’s. Green cards (permanent resident cards) are not necessarily allowed, so look that one up in your handbook. As a rule, an acceptable ID must be:

Current — (there are exceptions in California, Tennessee and perhaps other states that allow the ID to be issued within five years even if it is expired.)

Government Issued — Some Notaries think that a signature affidavit or gas bill is a good secondary form of ID, but those are not government issued and you don’t know what the source of the information for the names on them are.

Photo ID — An acceptable ID should have a photo. I do not think that many states allow social security cards as secondary identifications. However, you can look that up in your handbook.

Physical Description — the ID would say your height, eye color, etc.

Serial Number — the ID should have a number such as A58362D.

Expiration Date — the ID should have an expiration date somewhere. Normally there is an issue date as well somewhere.

Signature — the signature on the ID is important because you will need to compare that to the one in your journal and on the document made by the same person.

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THE NAME ON THE ID

Different states have different rules for what the name on the ID should say relative to the name on the document. Some states do not require the names to match. Others require that the Notary be reasonably sure that the person in the ID and the person on the document are the same person. Reasonably sure is a wishy-washy term. You can never be 100% sure it is the same person because ID’s can be falsified and there could be multiple people with the same name as well as multiple people who look similar to each other. Identifying humans is easier than identifying squirrels, but there can still be confusion. The name on the document’s signature must be provable to the name on the ID, otherwise it would be questionable and risky to notarize that signature.

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PROCEDURE

When you do a Notary act, you ask for the signer’s identification. You record that information in your journal and you keep a journal whether your state requires it or not as that is your only evidence in court. You compare the name on the ID to the name on the document. If the name on the document is not provable based on the ID then you are advised to decline the notarization, especially if it is for a Deed. Here is a summary of the ID and acknowledgment notarization process.

(1) Ask for ID.
(2) Record ID information in journal
(3) Have signer(s) sign your journal and the document(s)
(4) Compare the name in the document to the name on the ID. Make sure the name on the document is provable based on the ID.
(5) Make sure the signature in the journal, document and ID all match.
(6) Fill out the certificate, sign and seal.

Examples of provability in ID
ID says John Smith — document says John W Smith…. name is NOT provable.
ID says John W Smith — document says John W Smith… name is provable
ID says John William Smith — document says John W Smith… name is provable based on the ID.

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FAKE ID

Keep an eye out for fake ID’s. There are guide books that can yelp you identify a false identification. If there is peeling lamination or the signature is above the lamination then it is fake. You can ask the signer what his sign is or what his birthday or height is. If he does not know his sign or birthday based on the ID, then his ID is fake. If he does know his sign that is great, but does not prove the ID is real.

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THUMBPRINTS

If you value your life, ask for journal thumbprints. They can keep you out of court. People might complain about being asked to be thumbprinted as it can seem like an invasion of privacy and a hassle — but a thumbprint is the only way an investigative agency can have a paper trail leading to an arrest of an identity thief. Thumbprints are the only unique form of identification a Notary can use at this point in time. No two thumbprints are alike, and they cannot be forged at a Notary appointment unless they wear a latex thumbprint on their thumb which would be easily detectable.

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You might also like:
Is it legal to photo copy a military ID?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22120

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October 19, 2013

Notarized Document Expired Identification

Filed under: Identification For Being Notarized — admin @ 8:18 am

Using expired identification cards

As a notary public, you will be bombarded with various types of identification — some will be current, some expired, some foreign, and some forged.

Expired ID? Check the issue date!
Some states allow an ID to be used for a particular number of years after the issue date. Many identification cards will document the issue date somewhere on the ID even if they don’t say what that date is. You can kind of guess what that date represents because it is not their birth date or expiration date. Using expired identification cards might be legal in particular states. California and Tennessee allow a notary to use an ID within five years of its origination date / date of issue.

Check your state’s notary handbook to find out the current laws in your state regarding what types of identification are legitimate in your state! Using expired ID cards just might be okay just as long as they are not “too old”.

If you cannot get identification that is acceptable in your state, many states allow the use of credible witnesses that can swear to the identity of the signer. Those witnesses are normally friends, relatives, hall mates, or neighbors of the signer.

You might also like:

What’s your sign? A technique for spotting false ID.
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19638

Credible Witnesses – the ins and outs
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19634

Notary Public 101 – Identification
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19507

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February 17, 2013

Identification requirements for being notarized

Do you need to see a notary public sometime soon? Are you going to get some critical documents notarized? Don’t be afraid, this is easy! However, there are a few things that you must know.

(1) The notary public is required by law to check your identification. Certain types of identification are generally acceptable such as current driver’s licenses, state issued identification cards, passports,etc. As a general rule, if an identification is a current government issued photo-ID with a physical description, signature, and serial number, it should be good for a notary public to use. Make sure that your signature on the identification matches the one that you use on the document.

(2) Your name on the document must match the name on the identification. However, if your name on the document is shorter than the name on the identification, that is fine. If your ID says John J Smith, and on the document, you are named as John Smith, you are okay. If the name on the document is longer than the name in the identification, the notary public can not legally notarize that longer name variation.

(3) Some states require the notary public to thumbprint you for Deeds affecting real property and Powers of Attorney. It is painless (when I do it).

(4) The notary can not legally choose the type of notarization for you to get. Please have your decisions of whether to get an Oath, Acknowledgment, Jurat, or something else worked out before you see your notary.

(5) Most states require the document signer to sign the notary’s journal as well as signing the document. The notary should also record your identification information in their journal.

(6) Jurats require the signer to swear under oath. Please be cooperative about raising your right hand when you swear under oath.

(7) Mobile notaries charge a travel fee, and can charge waiting fees if you keep them waiting. Please be on time and respect their time and fees. 123notary.com specializes in mobile notaries.

(8) If the signer doesn’t have acceptable identification, please consult an attorney. Please be aware that inmates in jail do not have identification on their person other than their wristbands which is completely unacceptable as notary identification.

Good luck, and find a great notary public on 123notary.com!!!

Tweets:
(1) Your name on the document must match your name on the identification when notarized.
(2) Acceptable notary identification must be government issued, photo, serial #, exp. date, etc.

You might also like:

Notary Public 101 – Identification
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19507

Signature Name Affidavit: Not a substitute for an ID
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=3823

When ID and documents have different names
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=230

What’s your sign?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19638

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January 18, 2011

Notarizing For a Minor — Identification!

It is not that common to notarize the signature of a minor, but at some point you might be asked to. A minor who needs to be notarized must be positively identified just like everyone else even thought their signature is not legally binding. But, if you need a notary for a minor — what type of identification can they get? The DMV can issue them a state ID card if they are not licensed to drive yet. If they are old enough to drive, you could get a drivers license. Another possibility is to go to the Post Office and apply for a passport which is another acceptable type of identification for being notarized. One benefit of passports is that they are valid for ten years while state issued ID’s are generally only good for four or five years!

So, if you are asked to notarize a minor, you can give the parents a tutorial about acceptable types of identification for their benefit! And remember — when notarizing a minor, please document in your journal that the signer is under 18 — and you might also document their exact age as well! Be professional when you do an “underage notarization”! Do it right!

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July 29, 2019

Defend Your Notary Section

Filed under: Ken Edelstein — admin @ 2:24 am

It seems so routine. You check/correct the Venue, check the identification, watch them sign, administer the oath, stamp and emboss; and lastly add your signature. They swore or acknowledged to what they signed – but SO DID YOU. Did you read what you are being asked to sign?

You are the boss
Don’t let anyone tell you what they want or need in the notary section, especially if it varies from your jurisdictions’ standard. I’ve seen absurd directives admonishing me to not make any changes to any preprinted text. Well, that applies to the body of the document; “they” have no authority over the notary section. Only you do. Sure, you want to please your employer; but it’s more important to “please” the Judge; so you are not questioned in court about what you did.

OPP – Other Peoples Problems
She took title in her maiden name. We understand that she now only has ID with her married name; but we still need you to notarize her former name – directly in the notary section. They have it a bit backwards. I can accept an original marriage document to prove her new name; but not the reverse. That marriage document shows a legal change of name; the former name is no longer her legal name.

Sworn to before me by Mickey Mouse rightful heir to the Dizzy estate. The attorney who wrote that would love to have my “office” as a “public official” add to the claim of Mr. Mouse. Time to redact that absurd addition. More common is the addition of a title or office. Sworn to before me by Minnie Mouse CEO of Mouse Enterprises. As told to me by the NY County Clerk “you notarize just the name as on the ID”. But there is a minor exception. When Minnie signs over the wording with her title and the little word “as” is added: “by Minnie Mouse as CEO…..” that’s OK.

Who did you Notarize
Often the Jurat does not include a name. Just “Sworn to before me on….”. Their signature is usually illegible, so I ask them to neatly print their name under their signature. In a related issue, often with corporate documents; is the issue of proper “ownership authority”. If their name does not appear in the document by what right are they asking me to notarize their affidavit of photocopy? In such cases I ask them to print under their signature their “authority to have” – such as Clark Kent, Managing Partner of Superman Inc.

Who Swears To
Answer: Both the affiant and the notary. As a sworn public official you are an officer of the court issuing an official document. One that can be used as evidence in a court of law. Every word in the notary section signed by you is, in effect, your sworn statement. Even the worst lawyer in the world will admonish you to not sign a document without reading it first. But do you actually read each notary section prior to signing – I do; and so should you. Judge to Notary: You stated that the defendant was the “authorized representative” of the Plaintiff – how did you determine that?

You might also like:

Following directions is more important than you think
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19608

Oaths, how Notaries screw them up
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19369

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April 13, 2019

How to deal with dogs, messes, and other signing nightmares

Filed under: Business Tips — admin @ 10:47 am

As a signing agent, you have to deal with more than identification, documents and signers. You have to deal with people’s unstable mental condition, dogs, guns, kidnappers, sexual harassment, anger problems and more. So, how do you deal with all of this?

1. Messes
If you are a Notary confronted with a mess, keep in mind that there are different types of messes. Some are just a nuisance. Others are dangerous because you might trip on something. There could be insects or vermin. What’s worse, a house might have diseases or bacteria in it which could prove deadly. It is not worth risking your health. If a house is too messy for you, meet the signers at Starbucks. Do the signing with a Jurat-accino, but no drinks on the table.

2. Dogs
Dogs can be annoying or dangerous. Yet the owners see the dog jumping all over you and licking you and see you extremely upset and say, “Oh, he’s okay.” If a human touches you that is molestation, but if a dog does it, “Oh, he’s okay.” You need to give them the lecture that just because they love dogs doesn’t mean that you gave permission for their dog to jump on you or come near you. Dogs need to be behind locked doors. I remember going to a signing long time ago. I had them put the dog away. But, the door never latched. Ten minutes later the dog came out of the room and was creating havoc again. Dog owners get really mad at me for not liking their dogs. Rather than being mad at me — keep your dog quarantined! I am a cat in a human body and cats don’t like dogs.

3. Children
If children are running through the house, you can tell the signers that they need to be fully focused on the documents and the children need to be somewhere else having quiet time. It is too distracting having children buzzing around.

4. Naked people
This doesn’t happen that often, but it is possible for you to go to a signing to have a naked person walking around. Perhaps someone got out of the shower, or perhaps someone is an exhibitionist. There are also children who don’t know any better. You could ask them to put on clothing or you could just pack up and leave if it is too disconcerting.

5. Guns
We have a Notary who did a signing for the Klan. The wizard guy asked, “Is that a gun you have in that there bag?” Our Notary said yes, so as to appear normal to the wizard, although she didn’t really have a gun. It’s moments like this you feel glad or relieved to be white (or hwite as the case may be, not sure why the h comes first… must be a Southern thang.) The important thing to understand about this situation was that it is good that the wizard did not say, “What did you say about my daddy?” Then you know you are in trouble.

6. Single Men
If you are a young lady in the house of a single man who shows interest in you, just understand that men cannot get married unless they express interest in ladies. Ladies always complain about men showing interest in them. In the last several years with all of the new technology and social media, men are ignoring women more and more. It is hard to get married now. Women were better off with men interested. But, if you are in a situation where you feel uncomfortable, or you just want to take precautions, here is a list of things to do:

(a) Let your husband know where you are so he can call the police if he doesn’t hear back from you.
(b) Carry pepper spray and brass knuckles
(c) Sit at the table closest to the door in a position where you can see the door as well. You never know who will come through that door.
(d) Don’t go to a part of the house where you could become cornered.
(e) Don’t respond to the interest shown in you if any.
(f) Learn self defense at one of those schools where you learn to elbow people and stomp on their toes.

7. Kidnappers
I did a signing for a kidnapper. Or at least the people with him suggested they had been kidnapped. I don’t remember the details. This was in Monterey Park, CA. I think they were his family and didn’t want to go with him, but they had no money and no place to stay. So, what could they do? I don’t know what their real situation was. If you are notarizing people who are under duress, you might end up in court, so be careful.

8. Russian Spies
Don’t worry. We need them around to make sure Trump wins a second term. And if you ask them who they are, they always reply, “My name is Nicholai, I am Russian, I love taking walks and I play the violin.” If they ask you if you are the Notary, tell them, “I am, or at least… that is what people want me to think I am.”

9. People who resist being thumbprinted
Whether it is legal or not in your state to refuse to notarize someone who refuses to be thumb printed — it should not only be legal, but should be require to thumbprint your victims. In any case, that is a red flag if someone doesn’t want to be thumb printed. It means they might be shady or up to something. But, there is nothing you can do if the law in your state doesn’t protect you.

10. Hurricanes
If you are going to a signing in bad weather, consider that you might get stuck there. Do you want to spend eight hours with complete strangers and their signatures? On the other hand, if you get a signing and it starts raining ice, you need to think twice about whether or not you will get there at all. You might get fired if you cancel a job, but you might be saving your life as well.

You might also like:

10 ways female notaries can protect themselves
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19196

Organizing the table for efficiency
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22245

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April 12, 2019

Jail Notarization Issues

Filed under: Hospital & Jail Signings — admin @ 10:05 am

For those of you who need a Notary to visit an inmate at a jail, penitentiary, detention center or correctional facility, there are many issues at hand. I will try to explain those issues in an organized way in this informational article.

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Identification for Prison Notarizations – http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22139
Lockdowns and inmate considerations – http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22142
Payment for Mobile Notary Service – http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22145
Personal Appearance of Signer – http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22148
Power of Attorney Documents – http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22151

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We also have other articles about jail signings.

Find a notary who can notarize an inmate
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21349

Notarization done at a jail rejected by police
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=17484

7 steps for jail notarizations
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=8634

Notarizing an arsonist at a jail
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=650

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April 10, 2019

Lock downs and Prison Notarizations

Filed under: Hospital & Jail Signings — admin @ 10:09 am

Lock downs and Prison Notarizations

It is common for jails to have lock downs. If you are meeting a Notary Public at a jail and there is a lock down, it is possible that your appointment will be cancelled. It is also possible that you will be held against your will in the building as long as the lock down lasts.

If you are going to be part of a jail notarization, there are several things you need to know.

1. Is the jail under lock down? You might call before you go. Lock downs can happen at the last minute, but if you call ahead of time, that decreases your chance of having a ruined appointment.

2. The prisoner may have been moved to another cell, cell block, or jail entirely. That will ruin your notary appointment as well.

3. The prisoner may not be willing to sign a particular document. If you go all the way to a jail only to find that the signer refuses to sign, you just wasted your time and so did the notary.

4. Waiting for guards. If you go to a jail, each jail has a different procedure for letting visitors in. Most allow Notaries in, however, the notary may be asked to stamp a blank piece of paper so that the jail has a record of the notary seal. Others who wish to visit in a jail might be allowed if they are going to be a credible witness, but explaining that to the jail staff might require a little skill, and it may or may not be allowed. So, check in advance. Step one is to get let in the jail and to know what area of the jail to go to. It is normal for the guards to search Notaries carefully, so be ready for that. Next, you have to ask for a guard to come. Once the guard comes, they can bring the correct prisoner in front of you in the area with the glass partitions. You will need the guard to pass the journal back and forth through the glass and inspect the pens and whatever else you send over.

You might also like:

Identification for prison notarizations
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22139

Jail notarization issues
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22137

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