Of the 7.125 billion people living on Earth, no two have the exact same fingerprint. Even birth twins don’t posses matching fingerprints, which is probably why some places are requiring notaries to take their clients’ fingerprints when performing certain notarial acts. While this isn’t a universal law by any means, certain states require fingerprinting for certain acts.
In most jurisdictions,a public notary can not be held liable for the truth or accuracy of a document that he or she notarized. The notary’s job is to verify the signer’s identity (e.g. checking driver’s license, passport, government-issued ID card, etc.) and watch the signer signs the document. When these actions are complete, the notary will add his or her official stamp to the document to confirm a successful execution.
Some professional notaries may find themselves in a position where they need a document notarized. For instance, a notary public may create an advance directive (living will), stating his or her preferences regarding medical care in the event they are unable to make them. Since they are already commissioned as a notary public by their respective state, the notary may assume that’s it’s okay to notarize the advance directive themselves. This would obviously save both time and money, which is why so many notaries bring up this question. So, can a notary public notarize his or her own document?