Immigration Notary Archives - Notary Blog - Signing Tips, Marketing Tips, General Notary Advice - 123notary.com
123Notary

Notary Blog – Signing Tips, Marketing Tips, General Notary Advice – 123notary.com Control Panel

June 18, 2013

Notarizing an I-9 employment verificati​on document

Have you ever notarized an I-9 before? If it were me, I would ask an Attorney, the Secretary of State, or Immigration if a notary public could notarize this form. If you are a notary, the most important thing to do is to clarify that you are NOT an Attorney, and can not give legal advice. Also clarify that you are not an immigration expert and can not advise on matters pertaining to immigration either.

But, it is not generally illegal to notarize a signature on a document.

Have any of you had to notarize an I-9 before?
How about a K-9?

Tweets:
(1) Ask an Attorney if a Notary can notarize an I-9 employment verification document.

Share
>

December 9, 2011

Affidavit of Citizenship

Affidavit of Citizenship 

This is a commonly notarized document.  Sometimes a person will need a signed Affidavit of Citizenship to get an identification document created. There could be other purposes as well.  The problem is that the person who needs this document, never seems to know how to write it, and always turns to the notary.  It is unclear to me if this is considered a “legal document”, so it is unclear if it is giving legal advice when helping someone draft this type of document.  In Florida, a Florida notary shouldn’t assist anyone draft any document since rules are more stringent there about what is considered legal advice.  Below is wording that I typically used when I helped people draft these types of documents.
 
Sample wording for Affidavit of Citizenship
 
I  (name of affiant) solemnly swear that I am a citizen of the United States of America, so help me god.
 
 
—————————–
Signature of affiant
 
(attach jurat certificate wording or a loose jurat certificate here, or have this notary verbiage written on the loose jurat certificate if there is space provided)
 
If you feel that it would be giving legal advice to dictate how this verbiage should be spelled out, then you can assist the signer (affiant), but asking him/her this question.  What do you want this document to say? For example, “I solemnly swear that… what?…”.   Then they will give their answer.  Then you can vaguely say, “Then you might consider writing what you just said, although I can not advise you on this matter”. 
 
You might ask the signer to have this document typed out with a signature line BEFORE you go to the appointment if you are a mobile notary.  Once again, the Affidavit of Citizenship is a common document, and you should expect to see it regularly during your notary commission if you do notary work for the public.

Note: There is no such thing as an immigration notary, however, Affidavits of Citizenship might be related to the immigration process.

You might also like:

Affidavit of Citizenship on Modern Family
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=10989

Affidavit of Support & Direct Communication w/the Signer
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=7084

Affidavit of Citizenship 2016 Edition
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18847

Notarized Affidavits Information
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=1963

Share
>

November 10, 2011

Notary Procedure for Affidavit of Support Documents

Affidavit of Support and the Notary Procedure
 
Notaries who are not immigration experts are strictly forbidden from giving any type of advice regarding immigration.  However, it is common for individuals going through the immigration process to have documents that need to be notarized by a state commissioned notary public.  The Affidavit of Support is the most commonly notarized immigration document.  Any currently commissioned notary with jurisdiction in your state can notarize your signature on that document. There is no such thing as an Immigration notary, or Immigration notariation, but any notary can notarize signatures on basic immigration documents.
 
How do I get an Affidavit of Support notarized?
Just for the record, you get a signature notarized, not a document.  Affidavits of support typically require a Jurat certificate or the type of notarization known as a Jurat.  This requires a quick oath to be given to the signer by the notary public.  The oath only takes half a minute.  The notary would need to check the identification of the signer (this applies to most states).  The notary public would record the identification document’s information in their journal (most states require a journal). 
 
Identification
The ID could be a current drivers license, passport, state ID card.  The ID should be a current government issued photo ID with a physical description and signature.  Green cards are typically not allowed as identification to be notarized.  Foreign driver’s licenses are generally okay, and passports are acceptable.  Make sure to check with the notary you are going to use to see if your choice of identification will be okay.  Make sure your identification is not expired.  Some notaries will allow the use of credible witnesses as well.
 
The Oath
Have you ever sworn under oath before?  Its easy. Just raise your right hand and say, “I do”. It’s the notary’s job to ask you to raise your right hand, and its their job to create some wording for the oath too.  They might say, “Do you solemnly swear that the contents of this document are true and correct and that you agree to and will abide by the conditions in this document?”.  Just don’t mumble when being given the oath.  Speak clearly please.
 
No English? 
If the signer doesn’t speak English, most states do NOT allow the use of a translator.  The signer must be able to speak directly with the notary public.  So, for example, if the signer speaks Spanish, just find a bilingual notary public who knows enough Spanish to be able to converse with the signer about the document and the signing. The bilingual notary doesn’t have to speak the language perfectly, but enough to communicate adequantely with the signer.
 
Immigration Advice
Do NOT ask a notary public for immigration advice, unless they have evidence that they are an immigration professional in some official capacity. Notaries are not allowed to give any type of legal advice.  Additionally, notaries can not draft legal documents, although many states allow them to draft less formal documents.
 
Where do I find a notary?
You can find a mobile notary on www.123notary.com, and there are bilingual notaries speaking almost every language on the planet from Arabic to Zulu.  Spanish is by far the most common foreign language for notaries to speak, but 123notary has many who speak all other types of languages.  If you want to find a notary office, try your local UPS store. They can be found on google.

.

You might also like:

2016 version – Affidavit of Support
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=17528

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

Modern Family – An Affidavit of Citizenship & Affidavit of Domicile
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=10989

Share
>

November 29, 2010

Just Say No Article #2

Assisting with Immigration issues
If you are not an immigration expert, don’t answer immigration questions and don’t advertise yourself as an immigration expert. However, notaries are allowed to notarize many types of immigration documents. Just don’t give advice.

Assisting with legal advice
If asked for legal advice, if you are not an attorney, please refrain from giving legal advice as it might constitute unauthorized practice of law. Drafting legal documents, i.e. documents to be used in court or submitted to a judge or attorney could constitute legal advice or service (unauthorized practice of law) in many states. Don’t even offer to recommened particular notary procedures for their document, as that also could constitute unauthorized practice of law.

Backdating
Putting a date on a document’s notary certificate section that is previous to the current date is considered backdating and is illegal. Don’t backdate. Many signing companies will ask you to backdate when they are in a pinch and will lose their lock on the borrower’s loan. That is their problem, not yours. If you backdate you could lose your commission if you get caught. It is a misdemeanor in many states to ask a notary to commit fraud, so you can report a company that asks you or coerces you into backdating.

Don’t make notarial recommendations
Customers always ask what type of notarization they should get. You are not allowed to tell them in many states. You can describe the attributes of the various types of notarizations and ask what the document custodian would like too. Just don’t make recommendations.

Letting your boss review your journal
Your boss can not inspect your journal on their own. However, if you are present, then its okay if your boss inspects the journal. The notary should not let the public see journal entries unrelated to their specific business. Its best to make a copy of the journal entry that blocks out other entries to protect the privacy of the others who you notarized. If not all of the notarizations are related to your boss, it would be better if you make a copy of the journal entry in question rather than letting the boss look at the whole journal while you are there.

Blanks?
Don’t notarize a document with blanks in it. The blanks must somehow be filled in or crossed out. Otherwise you must decline from notarizing that document.

Lock up your seal and journal
Not all states require a seal and journal, but these instruments are the exclusive property of the notary and must be kept under lock and key. Don’t let others use them or you can get in big trouble, and so can the person who used them.

Don’t notarize parts of documents
If you are handed page three of a long document, you can not notarize it as a separate entity. Documents must be in their complete form to be notarized. Don’t only notarize the last page of a document — the page that contains the certificate wording either.

Failure to emboss?
Its not required by law to emboss pages, but if you choose to emboss every page of every document you notarized, it becomes difficult to substitute pages of documents without getting caught. Embossers leave a raised seal that can not be photocopied, so you will be detering a lot of funny business using an embosser.

You might also like:

Notaries that fail and what they did wrong!

Everything you need to know about journals

13 ways to get sued as a notary
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19614

Share
>