Handling Commercial Loan Documents as a Notary Signing Agent

Are you ready to handle commercial loans as a notary signing agent?  There are four standards to meet before you do so. Preparing to Handle Commercial Loans Know how to be a great notary. You must be extremely confident of how to handle any document that requires notarization.  It should go without saying that you need to know every element of a notarial certificate and be able to recite and write out the language that goes in your state’s certificates of acknowledgment and jurats (for individuals)  from memory.  You should have at least $100,000 in errors and omissions insurance (in my opinion) and should be familiar with how to handle complex entity notarial certificates.  You must take formal notary training and...


Can I notarize this document?

Today, we are focusing on confusing and unfamiliar documents that notaries are requested to notarize.  We are going in this direction today because after polling several new notaries this month, I learned that many would like to know how to handle documents they have never heard of--the crazy ones...the ones that are not in loan document packages.   I ran across one that made me scratch my head, so we will take a look at it.  Its purpose is to say who gets my DNA results from a genealogy company when I die.  It is called a Beneficiary of DNA Information, and it is pictured in the image below.   By analyzing this document, we will answer common questions asked by new notaries, for...


Posted By Category: E & O, Featured, Loan Signing Agent, TrainingComments: 4
Notary Marketing Letters

How to Write Notary Marketing Letters

The biggest notary buzz this week is “Where can I find a form marketing letter to send out for soliciting business from  ______?”  The blank usually contains title companies, doctors, or attorneys most often, but occasionally there are other business professionals mentioned.   Below is a tip sheet I have prepared for you.  But, before we go into tips and techniques, here's my best heartfelt advice: Be brave -- write your letter.  You may be surprised at how empowered you will be after you take that step.  As a business owner, this is a skill that you will need to use regularly. It's the first of many steps out of your comfort zone.  So, we'll get through this first one together. Make the letter short...


Split Signings

3 Steps to Handling “Split Signing” Appointments

A "split signing"  is a type of notary signing appointment.  Being signed are real estate  or loan documents--the reason is it referred to as a split signing is because all of the signers can't attend at the same time. Therefore, a transaction that would normally require one appointment will require at least two appointments. Today, our example signers will be siblings--Jack Smith and Jill Jones.  Jack are Jill are co-owners who are selling property that was left to them in equal shares by a deceased relative. Here are three complicating factors --  Jill lives Dallas, Texas. Jack lives in Madison, Wisconsin. The property is in Houston. Unfortunately, when the documents were drawn up, the attorneys who drafted the documents for sellers Jack and...


Why Every Notary Needs Training

Why EVERY Notary Needs Training

This week’s tips are for notaries who may be at risk of  losing relationships with hiring parties because of errors in their notarial acts, losing their commissions--or worse--may inadvertently perform a criminal act. Because life gets busy and is full of more pressing and interesting matters, notary laws are not top priority to many notaries--I understand that!  Unfortunately, the result is that too many notaries haven't developed proper skills.  They don't know what they can do and what they can't.There are pitfalls to avoid, but untrained notaries don't see them.  They are  performing notarial acts as if blindfolded, unaware of the risks and pitfalls that await them and the public for whom they notarize.  Pressures to Perform Unlawful Acts Just this week,...


Use Caution when Notarizing for Elections and Political Candidates

Normally, I like to share notary tips and fun strategies for you to use in your business. But, on occasion, I feel obligated to share a warning, especially for those who are just getting started.   If you are new and haven't taken a training course, please do that before you begin seeking work--especially before handling election forms.  If you think that's unnecessary and old fashioned, please continue reading! Candidate and election forms are treacherous. New notaries without training should consider referring requests to perform notarial acts for political candidates and relating to election affidavits to more experienced notaries.  Please don't do it before taking a basic notary course and purchasing errors and omissions (E&O) insurance.  Notarial errors related to elections will...


Top 10 Things a New Notary Must Know

Top 10 Things that a New Notary Must Know

Are you a new notary public?  Do you feel as if you are -- Swimming around in murky notary laws that are too complicated? Trying to learn rules stuffed with terms that you do not understand? Attempting to make sense of confusing notary group discussions?  Unable to get a straight answer on anything? Drowning from information overload? If so, take this to heart:  You can't learn it all at once.  You really can't!  Don't make yourself feel bad because you don't know it all. Let's slow down and take your move into the notary world one small step at a time.  Today, I want to go over the barest requirements and most basic skills you need to learn before you slap the Mobile Notary sign on your car and drive...


Master Complicated Notarial Certificates

5-Step Plan to Master Complicated Certificates

Today's newsletter is about how to master complicated notarial certificates.  Why should you care about this? Most notaries want this knowledge because complicated notarial certificates are the types attached to commercial loan documents and commercial real estate transactional documents. Real Situation Last week, a notary  reached out for assistance with completing the blanks of a certificate of acknowledgment--the words and blanks looked completely unfamiliar to her.   She shared with us a great example of what I consider to be a "complicated" notarial certificate, and it's been included below.   There are so many blanks in the certificate that even a seasoned notary would be puzzled!  In fact,  it's likely that few lawyers could unravel the notarial certificate in the example below without...


Success

New to the Notary Business? A Simple Plan to Start You Off

Did you become a notary so that you could use your notary commission to develop a business? Are you having trouble sorting out all that you need to learn? If you are feeling overwhelmed and need to know where to start, this article is definitely for you! I know this is much longer than our usual articles, but I want to reach out to new notaries who are looking for a pathway to starting a notary business. I read your comments in the virtual notary hangouts and realize that one problem you are having is that you heard about this great opportunity, but have no clue where to start. I have observed:  New notaries are spending far more than I...


Posted By Category: Featured, Notary Business, TrainingComments: 1

Fun Facts About Notary Certificates

Is this statement true or false? Notary certificates are no big deal -- just do what you can to fill them out correctly and move on. However, this is often how a new notary perceives notarial certificates.   I remember that I was no different!  That's why we are going to talk a bit about notarial certificates this week.  Hopefully, you will read a fact or two that you did not know or have not considered in the past.   Please keep in mind as you read that this is not legal advice and notary laws differ from state to state. Fact #1 - Notarial certificates outlive the notary. The purpose of a notarial certificate is to memorialize forever who appeared before the notary on what...


Certified Copy

How to “Notarize” Copies – The Certified Copy Dilemma

Many new notaries have contacted me over the years to ask how to produce correctly "notarized copies" of important identification documents such as driver licenses, government-issued identification cards, foreign or U.S. passports.  Let's first discuss what the term "notarized copy” actually means.  The citizen is referring to the act of certifying a copy of an original document as being an exact copy of the original. Suppose a fictional notary named Tom Teller has been approached by a citizen requesting a notarized copy of a U.S. Passport.  The citizen, another fictional character named Mrs. Lola Longmire, knows what she wants and she intends to have it her way:  Lola Longmire expects Tom to make a copy of her ID and stamp the copy...


Notary Seal

How to Become a Notary

How to Become a Notary Public Becoming a notary public is a relatively simple process, depending on which state you live in. Notary training is only required in a handful of states such as California, Colorado and Pennsylvania. A few additional states require notary exams, like Connecticut and New York.   Step 1: Notary Education While not required in most states to become a notary, we recommend notary education for all notaries public, especially new notaries.  Many states publish notary laws or a simplified notary handbook.  While helpful, many times this basic guide falls short of the many difficult situations a notary may encounter each day.  Our state-specific online notary training courses cover these important topics and more:   How much can I charge? How much...