Notary Publics are appointed by state governments. They act as impartial witnesses during document signings, preventing fraud. However, notaries have specific responsibilities, including the security and maintenance of their supplies, such as notary embossers. These are a few things prospective notaries should know.
Notaries verify the authenticity of documents and their signing either in person or digitally. They also record affidavits and declarations. Notaries also administer oaths and promises of honesty. They deal with foreign drafts, bills of sale, deeds and other documents. Their primary duty is to witness signatures and verify the identification of the signer.
Notaries may be either common- or civil-law notaries. Whereas civil-law notaries are lawyers who are allowed to give legal advice, common-law notaries are not lawyers and cannot give others legal advice.
Notary training is available. Although it may not be required in your state, consider pursuing this training because it will prepare you to complete all your duties as a notary. It will also discuss the laws applicable to notaries. You will learn notary procedures and best practices, including journaling. You will also receive a notary handbook, which will discuss the notary laws and duties, from your state’s notary public administrator.
Some laws that apply to notaries may be unclear, so notaries should have access to their state’s notary public administrator, who can clarify these issues. In addition, notaries should keep a list of identification documents necessary to ensure the identity of their clients. Notaries must purchase and maintain the security of state-required notary seals and embossers. Finally, develop an errors and omissions policy to prevent legal expenses.
New notaries must take an oath of office prior to notarizing any documents. This oath can be taken during the application process or after you receive your commission.
When you receive or renew your commission, don’t forget to purchase your notary supplies.