How Mobile Notaries Save You Money & Time

Some of the most important transactions you’ll be a part of in your lifetime require the services of a notary public, including the purchase of a home, executing a will and creating powers of attorney. But when you consider the physical location where you need these notary services, you can see how the situation can be quite inconvenient. Fortunately, some companies offer mobile notary services when you need to execute critical documents and it’s impractical to go offsite. Here are some of the benefits

 

Mobile Notary Services Save You Time:

A notary’s job is to verify the identity of the parties signing documents, which requires all signatories to physically appear and offer proof of identification. For certain paperwork – such as signing healthcare directives when a person is in the hospital – it’s not possible to do so. Other times, it’s just inconvenient for all parties to go onsite at a notary’s office, such as when you’re purchasing a car. A mobile notary public can be where you need them to be, according to your schedule.

 

When You Save Time, You Save Money:

When you think about the value of your time, you can see how mobile notary services save you money. Instead of traveling across town to have your will notarized, you can hire a mobile notary public to come to your home or office. Rather than dealing with traffic and losing on business opportunities, you can retain a notary to visit you to handle the notarization process – which typically takes only a few minutes, as compared to the hour or more that you’d spend in your car.

 

Services Offered by a Mobile Notary Public:

A traveling notary has the same credentials and qualifications as any notary public; the only difference is that you arrange for their services in advance so they can be onsite when you need them. You’ll still get the best service, including attention to detail, following proper notarization process for your state and answering any questions you might have. You’ll also have the peace of mind of an insurance policy for any errors or omissions.

 

Choosing a Mobile Notary Service:

As with any professional service you might retain, it’s important that you research your mobile notary properly. Look for companies that employ notaries with the proper credentials and training for your state. You’ll also want a full explanation of the rates charged by a mobile service, such as whether the fees are hourly or on a flat fee basis – and whether you’ll have to pay for transportation/mileage.

Mobile notary services save you time and money when you need to notarize important documents, but the circumstances mean it’s impractical or impossible to head to a notary’s office. Plus, it’s easy to arrange for a mobile notary public – whether you need a one-time service or would like to work out a long-term relationship. When your situation calls for a traveling notary public, make sure to hire a service that possesses the proper qualifications and will deliver quality customer care.


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Legal Responsibilities of a Notary Public

There are a number of transactions that require documents to be notarized by a certified notary public, from mortgages and car loans to will and powers of attorney. Considering the importance of these types of paperwork, you likely have questions about the legal impact of obtaining notarization. The laws regarding legal responsibilities of a notary public vary depending on the state, but there are some common factors.

Acknowledgement:

Under certain circumstances, a signer is required to formally declare their acknowledgement of execution of a document. This means that the signatory:

  • Understands the contents and intent of the paperwork;
  • Informs the witnesses that the signature is his/her own; and,
  • Signs the documents under free will and without coercion.

Documents that usually require a notary to obtain acknowledgement are deeds, powers of attorney, agreements that involve real estate and estate plans. A notary public can do so by making a statement as the signatory is executing the document, such as:

“Do you acknowledge or declare that you understand the contents of this document and have signed it of your own free will, without any coercion?”

Oath & Affirmation:

Some documents require the signer to swear to a notary that the contents are true. This constitutes a pledge to verify the statements made in the document, typically within a written affidavit where the signatory has supplied certain facts. Documents filed with a court commonly require that a litigant swear under oath that the statements made within are true and correct.

As with an acknowledgment, the notary must make a statement as the document is being signed, such as:

“Do you swear/affirm under the penalties of perjury, that the information contained in this document is the truth?”

Lawful Notarization: Key Elements

There are critical elements of a notarization in order to ensure the notary services are considered legally sufficient.

  • The signatory to the document must be physically present before the notary public. The purpose for physical presence is so the notary can properly assess the signer’s understanding of his/her actions and willingness to sign.
  • The person signing must be personally known to the signatory, which typically requires the notary public to review a government issued ID.
  • The document being signed and notarized must be an original, i.e., is completely unsigned before presentation to the notary. Any copies of a document that include a photocopy of a signature cannot be notarized because they would not be considered original.
  • There must be notarial language demonstrating that the notarial act occurred contemporaneously with the execution of the document, such as “Subscribed and sworn to before me this [date].”
  • The notary is required to apply their notarial seal alongside the notarial language.

It’s critical that you have an understanding about the legal responsibilities of a notary public and the role these professionals play when you’re executing important documents. As such, you should make sure to choose the right notary services to suit your needs. When considering your options to retain a notary public or notary signing agent, look for those that provide quality customer care and professionalism to ensure proper execution of relevant documents.


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Using a Notary Service to Execute Loan Documents on High End Cars

Notary Services for High End Cars

As an auto dealer, your revenue is driven by sales and your time is best spent on the floor working with customers. The last thing you want to do during a busy day is chase down a fraudster who supplied false information to secure a loan on a high end car. Identity theft and fraud cost US businesses over $50 billion a year, and it’s relatively easy for shysters to create false identification documents to obtain financing. Using a notary service for car loans greatly reduces the risk of fraud and streamlines the loan process. Here’s what you need to know.

 

Insurance Against Fraud:

The primary reason to use auto notary services is to reduce fraud and it’s the notarization process that achieves this goal. There are five tasks a notary public will complete:

  1. Ensuring that parties are physically present;
  2. Scanning the documents to make sure they’re complete;
  3. Verifying the signers’ identity and ensuring they’re signing through their own free will;
  4. Recording the transaction in their journal (in some states); and,
  5. Applying the notarial seal and certification.

When the auto notary public accomplishes these tasks, there is almost zero possibility of the presence of fraud. Therefore, retaining a notary professional to notarize all documents related to the purchase of a high end car is a type of insurance policy to ensure your dealership doesn’t suffer losses due to fraud.

 

Notarizing Vehicle Title:

Notarization requirements vary by state, but there are several jurisdictions where you’ll need the services of an auto notary public as part of the sale process or when accepting a trade-in vehicle. Even where not legally required, it’s smart to retain a notary professional. Doing so ensures you’re not stuck with unfortunate circumstances and upset customers, such as:

  • You take possession of a vehicle for a customer’s trade-in value, but the title isn’t clear. You cannot sell this car to another customer, so you’ve lost the entire value.
  • A customer who has made a purchase returns because there are questions as to their title and ownership of a vehicle. You’re probably legally required to return their money or otherwise reimburse them.

In both cases, you’ve likely lost a customer – and your reputation suffers when they spread the word about poor service at your dealership.

 

Offsite Notary Services:

Of course, it’s impractical to head to a notary public’s office every time you sell a car or accept one for trade-in. Fortunately, there are nationwide mobile notary public services so you can complete notarization onsite at your dealership.

When you use an auto notary public to execute loan documents on high end cars, you reduce the risk of fraud and can save your dealership thousands. Plus, you save yourself the time and hassle of having to track down fraudsters to recover vehicles or make insurance claims for high end vehicles that were procured by fraud. Make sure you choose the right auto notary services by retaining a company that provides top customer care and professionalism.


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Why We Need Notary Services in the Internet Age

Notary Services for the Internet Age

Advancements in technology have enabled us to move beyond a simple purchase of a product online. These days, internet users are able to arrange a home mortgage, obtain a car loan, draft a will and complete other transactions that we never thought would be possible a few years ago. However, despite the ease of handling business online, there are still legal standards that require notary services to execute relevant paperwork. Plus, there are a number of reasons that you should consider retaining a notary public – even if it’s not required by law. Here’s why we still need notary services in the internet age.

 

The Notary Public’s Role:

A notary public is a person appointed by state government to act as an impartial witness in the execution of important documents. The intent of notarization is to deter fraud by those signing paperwork, so proper verification of identity is a key task for notary services. A notary also assesses the signatory’s willingness to sign the document without threats or intimidation, and ensures that the signer is aware of the contents of the paperwork.

When looking at the functions of a notary public, you can see why the role is still essential in the Internet Age: These tasks must be performed by the notary while in the physical presence of the signatory. Obviously, this isn’t the case for online transactions, so notary services aren’t going away.

 

A Notary Public May Be Required by Law:

There are certain documents that must be notarized by law, even if the majority of the transaction, negotiations and communications take place online. The exact requirements vary by state, but you’ll likely need notary services to execute:

  • Documents related to the conveyance of a real estate, including the mortgage, deed and any other agreements;
  • Wills, trusts and certain estate planning documents;
  • Prenuptial agreements;
  • Structured settlement documents;
  • Powers of attorney for property;
  • Healthcare powers of attorney; and,
  • Others according to state law.

 

Other Times to Consider Notary Services:

Fraud is widespread in online transactions, so there are situations where you might retain a notary public to ensure a document signer is who they claim to be. Retaining a notary professional would be useful in such online transactions as:

  • The purchase/sale of a vehicle, to verify title and ownership;
  • Online transactions for the purchase/sale of expensive products;
  • Agreements for personal loans; and,
  • Business agreements.

In general, consider retaining the services of a notary public whenever the risk of fraud is present – whether online or not.

The convenience and speed of completing transactions online appeal to many people who want to transact business via the internet. But it’s important to understand that legal requirements for notary services don’t go away simply because documents can be executed online. There are also benefits to retaining a notary – even when not required under the law – in order to protect yourself from fraud. Contact a notary public directly for more information on the laws in your state and other requirements for completing online transactions.


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Items That Don’t Require a Notary, but Probably Should

What Items Require A Notary?

You’re probably aware that certain transactions and items require notary services to execute the necessary documents. However, there are many scenarios where a notary public is not required by law, even though there are many compelling reasons that verification services would be beneficial to all involved parties. When you consider the purposes of using a notary public, you can see that there are advantages of having one in certain transactions – despite the lack of a legal requirement.

 

Purposes of Retaining a Notary:

The role of the notary public is to verify the true identity of parties executing important documents, to assess their willingness to sign under their own free will and to ensure that the signatories are aware of the contents of the documents. In doing so, the notary professional helps reduce the risk of fraud in various transactions. A notary public is duty-bound to be impartial in notarizing documents, so all screening tasks must be conducted without self-interest. Transactions that require notary services vary by state, but commonly include:

  • Documents conveying title to real estate, including the mortgage and other agreements between a buyer and seller;
  • Wills, trusts and certain estate planning documents;
  • Prenuptial agreements;
  • Structured settlement documents;
  • Powers of attorney for property; and,
  • Healthcare powers of attorney;

 

The Notarization Process:

There are five essential factors for notary services:

  1. The parties must be physically present.
  2. The notary will verify what the document is and ensuring it’s complete (i.e., no blank spaces).
  3. The notary will screen the signers’ identity and make sure they’re signing of their own free will.
  4. In some states, the notary professional will record the transaction in their journal.
  5. Applying the notarial seal and certification.

 

When to Consider a Notary for Document Execution:

In addition to those transactions where a notarization is legally required, there are other circumstances where you may want to consider retaining notary services. The notarization process is intended to help reduce the risk of fraud, so employing a notary professional would be useful in any situation where there’s a potential for fraud. Some examples would be:

 

  • Purchasing a car to verify title and ownership;
  • Online transactions for sale and purchase of products;
  • Agreements for personal loans; and,
  • Business agreements.

In general, use a notary for any life-changing, important document where verifying the identities of the parties and their willingness to sign is critical to ensuring a smooth transaction. Retaining the services of a notary public is a small price to pay when considering the alternative: You stand to lose considerably – whether it be money, personal rights or other interests – if fraud is present.

Whether your circumstances require notarization will depend on the laws of your state, but – regardless of the legal standards – there are benefits to retaining a notary public in certain transactions. Prevention of fraud is key and notaries greatly reduce the risk of falsification of documents and/or identity. When you do decide to work with notary services, make sure to choose a company that provides premium customer care and will ensure proper execution of all documents.


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How To Become A Notary Public

How to Become a Notary Public

If you’ve ever used notary services to obtain a mortgage, draft a will, receive a structured settlement or for other transactions, you know the importance of the notary public’s role in executing the documents. A notary professional serves as an impartial witness in certain transactions to protect against fraud in the signing of critical paperwork and, as such, is an official of high integrity. The job is rewarding and will keep you busy, so check out what you need to do to become a notary public.

General Requirements:

Anyone who is over the age of 18 and does not have a criminal record may become a notary public. In addition, you must be a legal resident of the state where you’re seeking a notary commission in order to qualify to provide notary services. As part of the application process in your state, you’ll supply this information under oath, swearing as to the accuracy of the statements.

As a practical matter, you should be fluent in reading and writing English to properly perform notary tasks, which involve communicating with the people who will be signing the documents. You’ll also need to arrange for your notary seal or stamp in order to officially certify a notarial act.

 

State-Specific Requirements:

Each state has different laws regulating notary public services, so you should check with your jurisdiction to find out exact requirements. In most states, you work with the Secretary of State’s Office to file your application, pay fees, receive your commission and handle renewals.

In some states, you may have to complete training and/or pass an exam regarding your position as a notary public. Other states have such requirements as:

  • Filing a passport-style photo with your application;
  • Obtaining a copy of your fingerprints;
  • An application fee;
  • Proof of bond coverage in the designated minimal amount, usually around $15,000; and,
  • Keeping a notary journal to track all transactions where you’ve provided notary services.

 

Your Job Once You Become a Notary Public:

Upon receiving your notary credentials and meeting all requirements of the state where you’re commissioned, you’re now ready to notarize. Your job will include:

  • Verifying the identity of parties executing documents;
  • Ensuring that the signatories are acting on their own, and not under duress or intimidation; and,
  • Making sure that the people signing the documents know what the contents are before signing.

Situations where you may be called upon to provide notary services also vary by state law, but typically include conveyances of real estate, execution of will and estate planning documents, powers of attorney, structured settlement paperwork and some court documents. Plus, there are other transactions where parties may seek notary services, even if not required by law.

Your role as a notary public is an important one, which is why there are general and state-specific requirements in order to be certified to provide notary services. Once you’ve obtained your notary public credentials, you can work for any one of a number of professional notary services to advance your fulfilling, satisfying career.


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Recent Law Updates for Notaries

Much like the laws governing other professions that require certification, regulation of the notary service industry is constantly changing. Whether you’re a notary professional or you deal with notaries in the course of your business, it’s smart to know the recent law updates so you can stay current with new requirements. Each state has different rules, so these laws will vary in their impact upon various transactions. Here are some of the key changes that pertain for notary publics and notary signing agents. (more…)


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History of the Notary Seal

You may be generally aware of what’s involved with “notarizing” a document as part of a transaction, but do you really understand the reasons why a notary seal is required? The mandate of having paperwork executed with a notary service goes back many years, and the process is actually founded with a view to deterring fraud. Have a look back at the history of the notary seal, from early to modern times, to help you better understand why it continues to play a role in many transactions. (more…)


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How to Refer Business to a Notary Public

Many businesses require the services of a notary public or notary signing agent, and they typically partner with these professionals to handle their day-to-day needs. These same companies are often approached by other organizations that need notary services, but aren’t sure where to find the best fit. If you’re asked about notary professionals by a company that you do business with, here’s what to consider so that you put them in touch with the right services.
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Notary Signing Agent Vs Notary Public

You might have heard the terms “notary public” and “notary signing agent” tossed around together, but the truth is that the two positions are quite different. There are certain transactions and situations where you would choose one or the other, so it’s important to find the right fit with a notary professional. While you should consult with relevant experts to determine whether a notary public or signing agent will serve your needs, you can benefit from some general information on how these two roles operate.
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