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June 13, 2012

Florida e-notary rules

Florida e-notary rules
http://notaries.dos.state.fl.us/education/elecnot.html
The information in this link is very hard to follow or understand.  It looks like all Florida notary public applicants must be trained in notary rules as well as e-notarizations before they can be commissioned at all. I didn’t see any restrictions as to who could do e-notarizations, so I will assume (perhaps incorrectly) due to the lack of clarification that any Florida notary with an electronic journal can perform an e-notary act.
 
Here is an interesting excerpt:
“Notarization and Acknowledgment
(a) If a law requires a signature or record to be notarized, acknowledged, verified, or made under oath, the requirement is satisfied if the electronic signature of the person authorized by applicable law to perform those acts, together with all other information required to be included by other applicable law, is attached to or logically associated with the signature or record. Neither a rubber stamp nor an impression type seal is required for an electronic notarization.
(b) A first-time applicant for a notary commission must submit proof that the applicant has, within 1 year prior to the application, completed at least 3 hours of interactive or classroom instruction, including electronic notarization, and covering the duties of the notary public. Courses satisfying this section may be offered by any public or private sector person or entity registered with the Executive Office of the Governor and must include a core curriculum approved by that office.”

You might also like:

What can an e-notary do?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=2706

The pros and cons of eNotarizations
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=3672

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November 28, 2011

Florida notaries with complaints

Notary Public Florida: a complaint story
 
Here is a complaint from soneone who used a particular Florida notary:

This is the first time we have used this Florida notary public for a closing. The Notary made a mistake on the documents where she had the borrower date everything 5/7/2011 instead of 7/5/2011 which was a notary mistake that ended up costing the broker $1000.00. Two weeks after the closing the notary called the title company directly demanding her payment of the full signing fee because she had bills to pay. She threatened to sue everyone involved with the transaction even though we were the company that hired her. This Notary was very unprofessional. The Notary was paid at 30 days by our company.
 
The notary claims that the borrower signed the dates incorrectly and that she asked the borrowers to put the correct date, but they refused.  Then, the Florida notary claimed that the borrower wouldn’t sign where it said borrower, because she considered herself to be the co-borrower. Additionally, the notary claims that the borrower was very rude and condescending to her. The notary claims that she spent two hours at the signing and that the borrower couldn’t read the small print and wouldn’t cooperate. It is hard to know who is right or wrong here.  Was this a notary mistake or just the borrower acting crazy — or both?
 
The bigger issue is that the notary threatened to sue everyone before her payment was even late. It is professional to allow people 45 days to make payment before you start making legal threats.  Also, suing someone for $60 doesn’t really make sense in the real world.
 
Another Florida notary public wrote a complaint about 123notary.
The notary was late confirming her listing, and I called the notary to see if she was still alive and in business.  We have notaries move, quit, and end up in the hospital, and die all the time without even informing us. If I ever die, I will have the consideration to inform everyone within (5) business days. In any case, I called this Florida notary’s phone, and her message stated that she was no longer doing loan signings.   I assumed from this message that she was out of business as a mobile notary — boy was I wrong.  Rather than contacting me and politely informing me that she was still in business, she started slandering us on forums telling the world about the horrible crime that we had commited by temporarily removing her listing.    She created all types of drama over nothing.  I think that her MISLEADING phone message should have stated that she is still doing mobile notary work, but not doing loan signings.  That way, anyone calling her about work would have a clear impression that she was still in business. I hate being blamed for other people’s bad communication skills. People need to take responsibility for their own incompetent actions.  In any case, her listing went right back on the minute she asked me to reinstate her.  Unfortunately for her, I documented her zany behavior in the review section.  I stated that she committed no acts of misconduct, but created an unnecessary drama over nothing!  This case was  a business mistake on her part, not a notary mistake, but it is still ridiculous!

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California notaries with complaints
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=2485

I make mistakes too
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=3639

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November 3, 2010

The Florida Notary issues and quirks

Florida Notary Issues and oddities

Understanding a document
A Florida notary public is NOT required to be able to read all documents being notarized by them, but the signer must be able to read the document. The document must either be in English, or a language the signer can read. This is differently worded from many other states. In California, the notary must be able to communicate directly with the signer, but does not need to understand the contents of the document, nor do the contents need to be in English.

Foreign language signers
The notary must be able to communicate directly with the signer without the help of an interpreter in California. So, if the signer brings their children along to help translate, the notary must decline the job unless direct communication is possible. But, in Florida, the statutes do not specify that the notary and signer must be able to directly communicate, but specify that the signer must have the document translated into a language they understand in order to qualify to get their signature acknowledged.

Verifying a VIN #.
Another unusual official act of a Florida notary is to be able to verify a VIN number on a vehicle. The maximum charge for this is $10 per notary act.

Drafting documents
Other states simple forbid notaries from engaging in legal advice, but don’t spell out exactly what legal advice could consist of. A notary public in Florida is expressly forbidden from drafting any type of document for a client — both legal documents and less formal documents. A legal document is often described of one that might be used in court or submitted to a judge or attorney. Additionally, a Florida notary must not fill in blank spaces in documents as that also constitutes unauthorized practice of law or legal advice in FL.

The Florida Notary Manual page 58 states that a Florida Notary should only sell legal forms and type up documents written by their customers.

Disabilities
A notary in Florida may sign on the behalf of a person with a disability if the disabled person requests. Nobody has ever mentioned any rule like this before on any of our forums.

Notarizing for minors
The state of Florida allows notaries to notarize for minors and should ideally document the minor’s age next to their signature.

Incompetency
A notary may not notarize for an individual who doesn’t seem capable of understanding the meaning of the document being notarized.

Marriages – I do!
Florida notaries may solemnize marriages if the couple provides a marriage certificate. ME, NH, and SC, plus one parish in LA are the only other states we have heard of that allow notaries to conduct marriages, but they need a special extra license in NH to the best of our knowledge. The notary may make up their own verbiage for the marriage, and then complete an official certificate for the marriage.

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