Notary Service Los Angeles


What does a notary public do?

The National Notary Association defines a notary public as a state servant who is appointed by the government to sign important documents or administer oaths. Notary public is required to notarize any document that has an originator who needs to verify the authenticity of the signer. The notary public confirms the signature's identity and verifies that the person who is signing the document fully understands the content of the document and isn’t being forced to sign the documents against their own will. The role of a notary is to prevent the fraudulent signing of documents where an individual may have had their identity stolen and used to sign off on loans and other financial agreements. A notary will ask the person who is signing the document to confirm their identity and they will have to provide a driver’s license or government-issued ID card or other official forms of ID which includes a photo and signature along with some details about the individual.

Can a Notary help prepare a document?

A notary public cannot assist in the preparation of a document in any way as it important that they remain a neutral/ impartial part of the process. Their primary role is to act as a witness for the signing of an official document. If a notary were to assist in preparing the document this would be considered unlawful practice and they would likely lose their licence to practice as a notary public in that state. If he/she is unable to verify the identity of any prospective signer, a notary public can refuse to notarize. A notary public should also refuse to notarize documents in which they have a personal financial interest.

How does someone become a Notary?

Each state in the U.S has differing requirements for people looking to become a notary public. For example in the New York State, a notary public is required to renew their notary license every four years and the license is issued by the New York State Department of State on completion of an exam and paying a renewal fee. In New York State a notary cannot charge more than $20 per signature. To become a notary in Florida you must first take a 3-hour course, and be fully insured. Notaries are required to provide an "affidavit" of character and must be residents of Florida for the duration of their four year term as a Notary. For most services, Florida notaries can charge no more than $10. The state of California is one of hardest states in America to become a Notary public as prospective notaries have to overcome a 6-hour course, write a state exam and pass a background check. The notaries are required to be California residents and be at least 18 years old. For most services, the maximum fee set by California ranges between $5-20.

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