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October Newsletter Quiz

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(@andy)
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Quiz

A client comes to you and wants you to perform notary service on a document. Upon examination you determine that the document is a Power of Attorney. Which of the following would be the correct procedure for the notary?

    A. Ask for identification from the signer, fill out the journal and have the signer place a thumb print in the journal

    B. Determine if the person in front of you is the principal (giver of the power) or the attorney-in-fact (the receiver of the power). If the client is the principal you would proceed with the acknowledgement.

    C. Tell the client that the state does not allow notaries public to perform notary service on the document because it says "attorney" on the document and only an attorney is allowed to do this.

    D. Just sign and seal the document because the contents of the document are none of your business.

The correct answer is B. Only the principal needs to appear before you to execute an original POA.

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(@Anonymous 1187)
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Wouldn't "A" be correct too? Identification would tell you who is in front of you - and in CA a thumbprint is required on POA signings.

So "A" and "B"both apply IMO

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(@Anonymous 1263)
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Unless you personally know the person requesting notary service on a POA and know them to be the principal named in it (and if your state permits personal-knowledge identification), then and only then would Option A be correct.

Even still, Option B is more accurate than Option A in that it postulates matching principal to person in the first place.

There are rules, and then there are opinions. Notaries are governed by rules. -LWB

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(@Anonymous 1187)
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@LWB wrote:

Unless you personally know the person requesting notary service on a POA and know them to be the principal named in it (and if your state permits personal-knowledge identification), then and only then would Option A be correct.

Even still, Option B is more accurate than Option A in that it postulates matching principal to person in the first place.

There are rules, and then there are opinions. Notaries are governed by rules. -LWB

And how better to match principal to person/signer than by asking for identification?

Here in FL the first thing we do with ANY document signing is make sure the document is complete (no blanks)....THEN identify the signer. How do you identify? Acceptable forms of ID pursuant to statute.

I still think common sense prevails - if John Jones comes to you for notarization services and you see it's a POA, the first thing you do is ask for ID. By seeing the ID you can figure out if he's the principal or the proposed attorney-in-fact.

JMHO

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(@Anonymous 1263)
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I disagree Linda, b/c option A has the notary performing service without establishing that the person identified is in fact the principal. It's all in the details. -LWB

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