Saturday, July 30, 2011

Weird info about notaries on the web

Many online articles claim a notary "legally authenticates" or "verifies the validity of" a document.

Huh? I thought a notary certified the signer's identity and maybe administered an oath.

One of the pieces says states "issue the stamp" to the notary. That should be a surprise to all the notaries who ordered their own seals through the manufacturers.

Notarizing by webcam is reportedly illegal in New Jersey.

The one page summer bulletin of the Nebraska Secretary of State is out. It's a Q &A. He says the most serious mistakes notaries make in Nebraska are not requiring the person to appear before them and failure to follow the rules about identification.

---Check out free articles and inexpensive ebooks.


Saturday, July 23, 2011

5 Ways to Save Money as a Notary Public

1. Don't pay to become a "certified" signing agent. Your state doesn't require it. The escrow companies and loan officers probably don't care.

2. Spend 5 minutes on Google before buying supplies and insurance. Look at any bundles and see if you can do better buying the items separately elsewhere.

3. Same thing with any required education. In Pennsylvania, for example, prices for the required 3 hours class range from $30 to $115. Maybe it's just me but I'd rather pay $30 for the class and have money left for gas and dinner and .... .

4. Don't pay for long distance. Set up a Google Voice account and call free (at least through the end of the year.)

5. Stay on top of what the state regulator is doing. Perhaps check their web site once a month. This will avoid any fines for something you didn't hear about.


Sunday, July 17, 2011

One state says can't notarize with web cam

One company told Oklahoma consumers they could get around the notary's requirement of personal appearance. Use a web cam! Wrong, says that state's Attorney General.

A bill to allow District of Columbia notaries to perform weddings at places other than the courthouse shows no signs of coming out of a 9 month stall.

---Practice exams for the California notary public test

Image courtesy of renjith krishnan

Friday, July 8, 2011

Pennsylvania notary law: discrepancy

In Pennsylvania, a notary posts a $10,000 surety bond to guarantee, among other things, "the delivery of the notary's ... seal to the office of the recorder of deeds of the proper county in case of the death, resignation or disqualification of the notary within thirty (30) days of such event" (emphasis mine).

That's section 8 of The Notary Public Law of the state.

OK, nothing too surprising there.

Until one reads section 22.1(a), where it requires the seal to be delivered to the Secretary of State.

It's not an idle question.

If collateral was posted to secure the bond, the notary would like to get the asset unencumbered. Failure to deliver it to the Secretary of State, on the other hand, can result in a fine of up to $300 and/or 90 days in the clink.

Here are the relevant sentences in full for those interested:

Excerpt, Section 8: "Every such bond shall have as surety a duly authorized surety company or two sufficient individual sureties, to be approved by the Secretary of the Commonwealth, conditioned for the faithful performance of the duties of the office of notary public and for the delivery of the notary's register and seal to the office of the recorder of deeds of the proper county in case of the death, resignation or disqualification of the notary within thirty (30) days of such event."

Excerpt, Section 22.1(a): "Should an application or renewal be rejected, or should a commission be revoked or recalled for any reason, or should a notary public resign, the applicant or notary shall deliver the seal of office to the Department of State within ten (10) days after notice from the department or from the date of resignation, as the case may be. Any person who violates the provisions of this subsection shall be guilty of a summary offense and upon conviction thereof shall be sentenced to pay a fine not exceeding three hundred dollars ($ 300) or to imprisonment not exceeding ninety (90) days, or both."

Excerpt, Section 22.1(b): "(b) Upon the death of a notary public, the notary’s personal representative shall deliver the seal of office to the Department of State within ninety (90) days of the date of the notary’s death."

Image courtesy of Master isolated images