A notary is an individual who is authorized by their state to certify signatures on legal documents. They act as a neutral third party on behalf of the state to ensure that all individuals’ signatures are legitimate and that the documents are processed correctly. While a notary seal does not necessarily make the documents legally binding, having a notary present at the time of signing can help certify a contract and provide a witness should issues arise.
Notaries also ensure their state’s laws are upheld in authorizing legal documents. However, a notary’s work goes beyond being present at the time of signing documents. Notaries verify the identities of the individuals involved in the legal transaction, ensure that they are not being coerced, and confirm a full understanding of what’s being signed. Keep in mind that notaries are not lawyers so they cannot provide legal advice on the documents being signed.
Fortunately, many process servers are also notaries and are already familiar with legal documents. Contact your process server to see if they offer notary services.
Notaries are a valuable resource and witness for your important or sensitive documents and contracts. Documents that need to be notarized include any loans, power of attorney, or property deeds. It is worthwhile to have a notary to ensure that contracts are upheld.
Government-issued identification must be presented to a notary to ensure that the people signing documents are truly who they say they are. Check with your notary to see if they require one or two identification documents.
A notary should be able to provide you with information regarding their certification and provide evidence such as an official seal or registration number. Some state government websites also allow you to search for certified notaries.
Like any business, prices can vary depending on location, the number of signatures, and the notary themselves. Additional fees could also be present depending on the state you live in, such as a travel fee. Ask a notary about prices, if their service is mobile, and when they’re available to sign. On average, a notary costs $25 to $40 for one or two notarizations and an additional $5 to $10 per additional notarization.
Because notaries are an agent for the state, most states require training and testing before being certified. Find more information on how to become a notary public from your state government.
A mobile notary is simply a notary who has the capability to work wherever their clients need. Mobile notary services include visiting homes, workplaces, or a designated meeting spot that works for all involved parties. Mobile notary services clients, such as real estate agents, typically need a notary public on-site to notarize document signatures on loan applications or real estate transactions. Some mobile notaries who work at an office setting are usually on-call for their next travel assignment while others may be independent contractors who work exclusively for a company as mobile notaries.
It depends on the mobile notary who you will be working with, as some base their price on the number of notarial acts being performed as well as a travel fee. Check with a mobile notary about their fees, as there could be an additional cost depending on the state you live in.
Online notarization, also known as remote or virtual notarization, is when the notary is present for a remote notarization via audio-visual technology over the internet rather than physically present.
Though both rely on technology, online and electronic are different types of notarization. Online notarization is conducted completely online, including the web-cam presence of the notary. Electronic notarization, also known as eNotarization, involves documents that are notarized electronically, including an electronic signature, while the notary is still physically present.
Currently, 25 states have passed remote notarization laws though some may not have implemented the changes. Others will enact the changes quicker due to emergency circumstances, such as pandemics.
There’s no better way to ensure your papers are served efficiently and legally than by using a professional process server. ServeNow.com is a trusted network of local, pre-screened process servers and legal support professionals. To find a professional process server that can help you with notary services, please do a search for a city or zip code.