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September 18, 2012

Notary Stories From the Edge

Rarely, but sometimes, a notary signing agent will meet people who try to give him or her an unacceptable ID…or people who claim they really do not need an ID at all– because they do not want to sign! An ID must be government-issued; unacceptable forms of ID are fishing licenses, YMCA cards, or medical marijuana cards. Gun permits are government issued, and in some states are the most popular form of ID. You may have read elsewhere here about the mistress who actually had a fake ID made up so she could pass as the man’s wife and they could take all the money out of the home (!). Being sure people are who they say they are can be a real challenge, it seems.

The most unusual situation I’ve heard about is the time that, when asked for his ID, a borrower bragged–foolishly–to an Ohio notary signing agent that his identical twin had once gotten a driver’s license for him! He went to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, posed as his brother, and obtained the license. Our Ohio notary signing agent reports, “This twin I was doing a signing for thought this ‘joke’ was quite funny, and then proceeded to tell me another notary had laughed about it, too…and had presumably accepted his ID without question…but,” says our cautious Ohio notary, “I then made this borrower take an oath that the identification he presented to me was in fact his driver’s license obtained by him–ditto his passport! Otherwise, it would not only be an unacceptable ID; it would be mortgage fraud! I also notified the mortgage company, and they agreed I had done the correct thing by asking the man to take an oath. Of course, this all made a dandy entry in the ‘unusual circumstances’ section of notes in my notary journal, where I recorded the details and the fact I had him sign an oath. I also sent an original page entitled ‘closing notes’ and included it in the package with the documents. I get a lot of work referred to me from this company now because they were impressed by my way of thinking and handling this guy.”

“Sometimes,” says another an Ohio notary signing agent, “I have come across a non-borrowing spouse who does not want to sign. These are often angry people who do not want the spouse to get the loan. In the presence of an Ohio notary, the non-borrowing spouse is usually required to sign the deed of trust; the truth in lending agreement;the itemization of the total amount financed; a document correction statement; an agreement about fees due; and the right to cancel. There may also be affidavits…so it’s always best to check with the title company. In any case, there have been many arguments between spouses where one does not see why he/ she has to sign, or one spouse does not want the non-borrowing spouse to sign and seems ready to dissolve the marriage!

One wife ended up walking out on her husband because he found out how much money she had spent–and why she was refinancing. The moment of truth! One husband punched a hole in the wall when he found out how much his wife had spent. Scary! It is always necessary to write it down in notes in your notary journal–and call the loan officer or a legal adviser–when there are any issues that prevent the signing from happening.”

Another Ohio notary told us, “One time when I asked for copies of a signer’s ID, she got nasty. She was the non-borrowing spouse, and she hated her husband; I can’t print here the awful things she was saying about him. It made me feel really uncomfortable. She also made sure there was no room to sign at the table, and then she put a huge glass of Coke on the table–right next to the documents. I was expecting her to knock it over any minute. When I asked her to be careful, she went to the refrigerator and added even MORE Coke to the glass until it was filled to the very brim. She took a sip– then refused to sign at all and started cursing. Then, I called the loan officer. After he got her all calmed down, we signed everything– but I had to go back the next day because an attachment was missing! The minute I drove into the driveway, she started cursing at me that I was wasting her time: “Are you STUPID?” was her greeting. As an Ohio notary, what did I learn from all this? Always check out the people really well before you take a job. If they seem at all irritable or peculiar, figure out if you really need this particular job.”

You might also like:

I’d rather stop being a Notary than carry a gun
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=15896

Have you ever been tempted not to go into a borrower’s house?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=15369

How weak are you with sob stories at the signing table?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22181

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November 3, 2010

Notary Public – Ohio odd rules

Ohio Notary odd rules and practices

If you are interested in oddities of notary laws in various states, rules for Ohio Notaries can sometimes be odd.  Here are some odd Ohio Notary rules / Ohio Notary Laws.

Here are a few examples.

(1) Signature by X
Many states allow signature by mark where the signer signs with an X. This is generally for very elderly signers who can’t sign their name properly. In California and many other states, two signing witnesses are required for this act. If you are an Ohio Notary, you can use a specially worded acknowledgment called a “Signature by mark acknowledgment”. I think this wording is helpful, because it helps to remind the notary what this odd procedure entails. Notaries do signatures by mark very infrequently and most don’t even know how to do it. The wording is:

State of Ohio
County of __________________

On the ____ day of ____, _______, before me, the undersigned notary public, personally appeared __________, personally known to me or proven on the basis of satisfactory evidence to be the person who made and acknowledged his/her mark on the within instrument in my presence, and in the presence of the two persons indicated below who have signed the within instrument as witnesses, one of whom, ________________________, also wrote the name of the signer by mark near the mark.

Witness my hand and official seal

_____________________ (Seal of Ohio Notary)

(2) Attorney in Fact Acknowledgment
An Ohio notary public can also use the form called an Attorney-in-fact acknowledgment individual. This particular form has he/she, his/her, etc., and is meant for an individual signer, not a duo, or multiple signers.

(3) Corporate Acknowledgment
There is also a corporate acknowledgment that Ohio notaries can use which documents the corporate position of the signer. I inserted the term (capacity), meaning the person’s job title. Here is the official Ohio notary verbiage¬† / Ohio notary wording:

State of Ohio
County of ____________

On__________, 20__, before me, the undersigned notary public, personally appeared _____________,
personally known to me or proved to me on the basis of satisfactory evidence to be the person who executed the instrument as the ___________________ (capacity) of _____________ (name of corporation), a corporation, and acknowledged to me that such a corporation executed the within instrument pursuant to its by-laws, or a resolution of its board of directors, and that the seal that is affixed to the within instrument is the corporate seal of the said corporation. Witness my hand and official seal.

_________________________ (Seal of Ohio Notary )

(4) The term of office
An Ohio Notary Term of Office is five years. This is roughly the national average for number of years of a notary commission.

(5) An Ohio notary can take depositions
— can transcribe a testimony in a law suit in court.

(6) Credible Witnesses in Ohio
A credible witness can identify a signer for an Ohio Notary. However, no oath is necessary for the credible witness. Many other states require the credible witness to raise their hand and swear under oath to the identity of the signer.

You might also like:

Credible Witnesses when ID and docs have different names

Become an Ohio Notary public

Can a notary be a witness?

Ohio Notary Stories from the Edge

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