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February 13, 2011

Dilemmas of a Washington State Notary

Dilemmas of a Washington Notary
We have many notaries on board 123notary.com including over one hundred Washington Notary listings.  We have notaries all over the state of Washington in every part of the state.  But, Washington is an unusual state.  First of all it is a coastal state with many inlets and islands.  Part of Washington is only accessible by land to Canada, and not to the states!  Fortunately, there is such a thing as an express pass, so that Washington state residents can pass  quickly in and out of Canada.
One of the Washington notaries on our site lives near a cluster of islands which are part of Island County.  She told me that signing companies didn’t pay her enough to get on the ferry to go to the islands to notarize documents.  Its very time consuming and expensive to take the ferry.
I am not a Washington notary or Washington resident, but I took the ferry from Vancouver city to Vancouver Island in Canada in 2006 which is very near Washington, and using a similar ferry system.  It was fun for me since I was a tourist, but very time consuming.  For two hours there was nothing to do except indulge in a massage chair or overly expensive high fat buffet. Transportation is slow out there, so bring a book and allow some time.
Transportation in the mountains is hard for the Washington Notary providers we have on board.  Fifty miles as the crow flies can take three hours on the windy mountain roads near the Canadian border.  Additionally, near the Idaho and Oregon border, distances are vast, and Washington notaries really need to spend a lot of time getting around there.
Another fun area is the Western coast of Washington. Olympic State Park is a fun tourist destination with some of the rarest rain forests that are not located in the tropics not to mention huckleberry dark chocolate treats sold at gift stores. But, picture what a Washington notary public has to do to get around in those parts. It takes hours just to go from one county to the next, and the population of humans is very sparse although squirrels are plentiful. 
In short, we have many notaries in  Seattle and the Seattle area where the population is clustered closely. But, in remote areas of Washington State, it can take a notary hours to get around. Travel is hard, but its very scenic.  In my experience, the part of the United States that could be confused for Germany would easily be the Western parts of Washington state and parts of Oregon too. The trees and landscapes are very similar (not the language).  The foliage transforms abruptly upon reaching the Canadian border for some unknown reason though. Maple trees suddlenly appear in mass!  How odd.  Is metaphysics to blame for this?  I can’t figure this one out!


January 31, 2011

State specific – strange and critical rules

Bizarre facts and things to watch out for in these states!

This blog entry will briefly discuss some bizarre rules effecting Arizona notaries, Georgia notaries, Florida notaries, Notaries in South Carolina, Virginia notaries, and Washington notaries (in Washington State, not DC).  I hope you find it as interesting as I do! 
The subject of travel fees is a dismal topic for Arizona notaries.  Many Arizona notaries in this state can not make a living doing mobile notary work while obeying the law which only allows a small rate per mile for travel fees.  There is a lot of information on this topic in our forum to read about.  The restrictions on travel fees are disasterous for elderly and bedridden people who can’t go to a notary.  People in convelescent homes can’t get their papers notarized and notaries can’t make a living.  Many notaries do charge a substantial travel fee, and nobody has had their commission revoked yet in AZ, but eventually something could happen.  http://www.123notary.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=4231
This is nothing to be afraid about, but really bizarre. An AR notary applicant will
be mailed three originals of their notary certificate and oath forms. AR notary rules can be a little odd at times.
To become a notary in Florida, you must be a Florida resident. However, Florida residents can become Alabama or Georgia notaries. BTW… Georgia notaries may only practice in the state of Georgia.  A Notary in Florida may solemnize a marriage.  But, without experience in this sensitive type of work, how well would a notary handle a marriage?  Another strange rule is that Florida notaries get paid by the stamp, and not per signature when doing acknowledgments.
Be careful if you are an Illinois notary public, there are some new laws that effect only Cook county regarding real estate notarizations.  http://blog.123notary.com/?tag=illinois-notary-laws.  Additionally, an IL notary may only charge $1 per acknowledged signature!  How does anyone make a living at this?
South Carolina
Non-attorney notaries in South Carolina are prohibited from doing loan signings unless there is telephone presence from an attorney.  The irony is that our directory has many notaries in South Carolina who pay their renewal fee each year. If you are a notary in South Carolina, you can still do other non-loan types of notarizations for the most part. Georgia notaries are faced with a similar situation.
Here is a very odd rule:  All Virginia notaries are notaries at-large & have the authority to perform all notarial acts anywhere within the Commonwealth of Virginia. Virginia notaries have limited powers in performing notarial acts
outside of the Commonwealth of Virginia.  However, documents notarized
outside of the Commonwealth by Virginia notaries must be must
be recorded in Virginia.
Washington State
This is a nitpicky rule. But, the notary and client must agree upon the travel fee beforehand.  This is stipulated by law in Washington State, so Washington notaries need to be careful to have their verbal agreements clear.  Additionally, Washington notaries may notarize their spouse’s signature.