Welcome to Notary Public Central's most frequently asked questions. Here you will find answers to many common questions people have asked over the years regarding Notary Public procedures and clarification of proper document execution. If you do not see what your looking for, please e-mail us at Notary@NotaryPublicCentral.Com
Please note the answers provided below DO NOT represent any form of legal advice.
1. Q. I am qualified in Nassau County but would like to use my stamp in another County. How may I go about doing this and is there a fee involved?
2. Q. I am moving and need to change my address with the County Clerk. I call but only get a recorded message. Could you tell me what to do?
3. Q. I live in Queens and originally became a Notary for my place of employment. I no longer work there. Do I have to turn over my Notary Public Commission?
4. Q. I just moved to Long Island (temporarily) from New Jersey. I work in Manhattan. I still have a New Jersey license but have a checking account and credit card bills with my new address. Will I be able to take the test on Long Island?
5. Q. I recently got married. Do I have to change my name on my Notary Public Commission?
6. Q. Can a NY State Notary Public notarize a Power of Attorney for a maternal or parental parent giving the other parent the Power of Attorney? As I understand the law, as long as the child who is the notary has no vested interest on or in a document he or she can notarize it for a relative.
7. Q. Someone asked me to notarize something and I didn't have my stamp. Can I do that or do I need my stamp to notarize?
8. Q. I am a legal resident of the US and I have a Green Card but I am not a US Citizen yet. Do I qualify to be a commissioned Notary Public?
9. Q.I have two A misdemeanors on my record one is for Criminal Possession of a Stolen Property and the other is for Petit Larceny. They are from 2003. I am in the process of applying for a Certificate of Relief from Civil Disabilities. Please advise me if I would be able to become a notary?
10. Q. I took your course and passed that test, thank you. I recently found out my job is relocating me to California. Is my commission good in California or do I need to retake the exam for that State?
11. I'm confused/what am I missing on this?: You’re supposed to have a notarial cert (prepared by an attorney I assume) for any document or you’re not supposed to notarize. However: my husband says he wrote a letter and took it to a Notary Public who notarized it. There are notary stamps with affidavit and acknowledgement wording which apparently I can buy. Per your course pack there’s going to be instances when a Jurat or acknowledgement need correct wording or additional wording but how do I change it without practicing law?
Please verify that I’ve got this correct: in NYS I could refuse any subscribing witness per Professional Choice and it would not be official misconduct.
been notarizing and have confidence in what I’m doing. Today my first deed
walked in the door – person had an old (maybe 30 years old) MTA disability
(cannot speak) photo ID card. I declined to notarize because of some blank
spaces on the deed and also because the MTA is a quasi gov’t agency – it’s a
public trust operated by a board appointed by the Governor; also declined
because the ID obviously didn’t have an expiration date. My question regards the
MTA as a State or gov’t agency. Any advice for me?
13. Q. I have a question regarding notarizing a sworn affidavit that indicates on the document “seal”. In addition to the seal, am I to also to use my Notary stamp?
14. Q. I want to know how I can tell the difference between acknowledgment and affidavit when I look at the document?
15. Q. I was wondering if you knew how long it takes to get your commission number from the State? I sent in my application 3 weeks ago and still have not received anything.
16. Q. I just wanted to know what I should do in case I lose my stamp. The stamp expires in July, 2006. The last time I remember using it was March 15th 2006, and I haven't seen it since, any light you could shed on this matter would be helpful.
17. Q.I passed the test and when I got my commission number, I took it to work to laminate it. I have since misplaced it and if that wasn't bad enough, I also had my mother's card with her commission number and misplaced THAT too!!! What should I do? I am so distraught over losing these cards.
18. Q. Is it
true that now even if I am a Bronx county notary, I can notarize documents
anywhere in NYS? That is, without having to apply in each cities' county clerk
Also, I found a notary on the web who met with me yesterday and took me to a home equity loan closing. He seemed very good. He said that he will train me so I can do loan closings and that I will be working under his signing agent license. The fee I would get paid for each closing would be $90-$100. He said that he works with Citibank and other banks. He is a 3rd party. He also
said that there are 4 other people working for him. Also, he said he would take me to meet the bank next week.
I'm new to all this. I just received my notary commission last Now and am in the learning phase. What is his benefit in me working "under" him? He said I would be an independent worker. Like a contractor I guess.
What do you think of this?
19. Q. An employee with the Village who took your course gave me your email address so that I might pose a question. A local business person notarizes forms for his business and he signs as John J Doe but his stamp reads Doe J John. Is this an acceptable practice?
20. Q. I work for a bank and have had several requests to notarize photocopies of passports, drivers licenses, marriage certificates and birth certificates. Is it okay to notarize photocopies and if so what is the best way to do this?
21. Q. If someone I know has a petition signed by several people (lets say 20 for example), Can I notarize ALL of those signatures if he swears that he saw all of them sign it? Also, do I have to stamp/sign it 20 times or can I write something at the bottom indicating that John Doe swears that he saw all of the above individuals sign this document? If I cannot do either of the above 2 things, what do you recommend that I do in this situation?
24. Q. I would like to know something; when I send in the Notary Public Application Instructions form, do I put in the same name as the receipt of the Examination Application? I signed Jane D. Doe-Smith. I wanted to know if I could get my stamp with just my married name. (Example: Jane D. Doe). Please let me know.
25. Q. I am a graduating senior at the University of
Delaware. My friend asked me if I could notarize his expungement papers 25. Q. I am a graduating senior at
the University of Delaware. My friend asked me if I could notarize his
expungement papers from a court in Delaware.
from a court in Delaware.
As a NY notary do I have jurisdiction to do so? Also I never bought a tempered seal, do I need one to notarize expungement papers?
As a NY notary do I have jurisdiction to do so? Also I never bought a
tempered seal, do I need one to notarize expungement papers?
25. Q. I am a graduating senior at
the University of Delaware. My friend asked me if I could notarize his
expungement papers from a court in Delaware.
26 Q. I received my "pass" slip in the mail and sent it to the Sec. of State along with my application for my notary card about a week ago. Is it possible to notarize something before I have my card? Is there a department I can contact that will give me my notary number and expiration date prior to me receiving the card?
27. Q. Falsely acting as a notary public, is this a felony or a misdemeanor?
28. Q. Is a notarized document
1) Presumptive evidence in court
2) Direct evidence in court
29. Q. What is the difference between Bill of Sale and Chattel Paper. I know they both pertain to personal property?
Q. I am a notary for NY state. Am I allowed to notarize a Canadian passport? And if so can I notarize a passport that is for a minor child with the mother as signing agent for them?
Q. I took the notary course with you a few months ago. I have a paper that I am notarizing but there is no room for me to stamp. I am not sure what to do in this situation.
Q. If an employee terminates employment and the employer paid for that employees notary exam and for their seal/stamp, can the employer require the employee to turn in the seal/stamp and or notary card?
Q. Must the Jurat be written on every paper I sign and stamp? From time to time people come to me to notarize a photo copy, if I write “Exact Copy” on the paper, sign and stamp it, is this ok?
Q. In NYS can a notary public notarize something for a relative? Like Aunt, Uncle, Cousin, Mother, Father, husband, child, etc…..
Q. IF I LIVE IN NY CAN I GET SOMETHING NOTARIZED IN NJ?
As a New York Notary Public, your jurisdiction (where you are allowed to notarize) is any County within New York State. If you would like to apply for another commission in a separate county you may do this, although it is not required. There will be a $10 filing fee in addition to a $5.00 fee for an Issuance of Certificate of Official Character.
When a Notary Public changes their place or residence, they need to notify the Department of State within 5 business days of your scheduled move date. You may contact the Department of State directly by calling 1-518-474-4429 (press #1 after first recording and #7 after second recording). Also, you may visit the local county clerk's office where your commission is on file and fill out the "change of address form". The fee for an address change is $10.
Absolutely not! When you become a Notary, you are considered a Public Officer. The commission belongs solely to you. You do not need to forfeit your commission if you leave your place of employment, regardless of who paid for it. Your commission is good as long as you keep a New York State residence. P.S. It is a great credential to have on your resume.
Yes, you qualify based on either your place or residence (NY) or place of employment (NY). Since your place of employment hasn't changed I would probably apply under your business address until you are settled and decide where you will be setting up a permanent residence. You could always apply for an address change later on. Just remember your commission may only be used in NY State.
No, it is not required that you change your name on your Notary Public Commission. You may add your married name in parentheses after your maiden name on your signature and stamp, however it is not required. If you do however wish to officially change your name then you may file a name change form with the Department of State by calling 1-518-474-4429 (press #1 after first recording and #7 after second recording). You may also visit the local county clerk's office where your commission is on file and fill out a "name change form". The fee for a name change is $10.
While it is true that a Notary may notarize documents for relatives in which they have no (Financial, Emotional or Beneficial) interest in, they have to be very careful. I am not authorized to give legal advice, however, if the document in question could come up for question by another family member or relative I would recommend that you do not notarize it. Especially if it has to do with (Estate, Property or Divorce proceedings). If you would like to call the NYS Department of State to confirm their number is: 1-518-474-4429 (wait for the recording to speak and then press 1 listen for next recording and then press 7 for the Notary Division).
Yes, you could notarize without having your official stamp with you. What you need to do is handwrite in BLACK ink beneath your signature the following EXACTLY as it appears replacing only what is in parentheses with your info:
Notary Public, State of New York
Commission #: (Enter Commission #)
Qualified in (Enter County Name)
My Commission Expires: (Enter Full month, date and year)
Sure, as long as you have a US resident alien card you qualify to become a NY State commissioned Notary Public.
There is a possibility that you may not qualify. After you pass the New York State Notary Exam, the State does their own background check on your character. If they find reason to believe you may not be a good candidate, they may reject your application. The fact that you are applying for a "Certificate or Relief from Civil Disabilities" may actually help, however the ultimate decision lies in the State Department's hands. I cannot guarantee you one way or the other.
Your New York State Notary Commission is non-transferable. You may only use your commission in New York State. If you are moving out of state, you need to apply for another commission in that State. Some states require a test others do not. Your best bet is to contact the following Department for California:
Office of Secretary of State
Notary Public Section
P.O. Box 942877
Sacramento, CA 94277-0001
I would have done the same thing. I don't
believe that ID card would of been sufficient for you to Notarize with. The
only type of ID card issued by State or Gov't we can accept is generally:
or Pistol Permit and things of that nature....
Although the MTA is a Gov't Agency, he/she was probably showing you a work identification card whereby there would be no expiration contained on it and therefore, not a legitimate form of ID. Because ID must contain those 4 elements to be acceptable: Signature, Physical Description, Photo and Expiration.
You did the right thing. In addition that fact that that you could not verbally communicate with him/her renders it null/void as well. Unfortunately, that person is probably going to have to go to the County Clerk, an Attorney or Court House for some additional help.
Yes, if a seal is required it would be in conjunction with the Notary Ink Stamp. The Stamp is always necessary, the seal is the secondary requirement if a document calls for one.
Acknowledgments contain a "Notary Certificate" (Acknowledged to.....) and are types of documents that do not require an "Oath" because the signer is not swearing to the contents of this document. They are simply asked, "if the document was freely signed for the purposes stated in the document". They must positively respond and be positively identified by you the Notary.
Affidavits on the other hand contain "Jurat" wording: (Sworn to before me.....) and with this document you must administer an "Oath" to the signer (do you solemnly swear that the contents of this affidavit subscribed by you is correct and true?). They also must be positively identified by you the Notary and positively respond with a yes in order for you to effectuate this document.
It generally takes approximately 30 days from the day the State Department receives it. You can actually find out if it has been uploaded before you even receive your card. Simply visit my site at www.NotaryPublicCentral.Com and click "Commission Verification" to see if it is posted yet. It will be listed here before you actually reeive your card and than you could order your stamp.
First thing you should do
is report it to the Secretary of State:
518-474-4429. If you still have your Commission Card, you can always get
another stamp made up. If you need to notarize in the meantime you could
handwrite the information that belongs on your stamp in black ink under your
If the stamp was ordered through me I would of had my sticker on it which
has our contact information in the event it was lost I would of received a
call. I haven't heard from anyone, therefore it may be that it is lost
somewhere around the house. Perhaps you left it in an attaché case or
All you need to do is call the Department of State (518) 474-4429 (option 1 and 7) and let them know you lost your cards and they will issue you a form to apply for a Duplicate Card. Make sure they send you 2 forms. I believe it will cost you $10/card, and it will bear the same number as your old ones. This is a fraud prevention measure. Then your good to go.
notarizing in other Counties, yes this is true. You may
notarize in any County within NYS. You do not need to apply for a certificate in each county.
As for the Notary Signing Agent, sounds pretty lucrative. This gentleman is probably quite busy with work and as such needs to sub-contract work to other notaries. He probably gets paid a fee from the Bank and passes some of it on to you. He probably has too many closings to handle and that is why he employes others. I would recommend you get familiar with the process
of closings ie: documents etc... When you feel comfortable and know that you can trust this gentleman, I don't see anything wrong with making some extra cash. However, I do not understand the part about you working under his license? There is no such License to work under unless he is referring to a Title Closer. There is no interest involvement here aside from the fact that
he is paying you for your time.
Whether or not that would be acceptable would be a determination of the Department of State or authorizing agent of the specific documents in question. However, I can tell you that as a New York Notary, your stamp should read the same way you sign. John J. Doe. It is the name which appears on your Notary Commissioning Card. There may have been an error by the printer wherein John J. Doe gave a copy of the commissioning card to the printer (On the commissioning card the names reads Doe, John J.) and that is why the stamp may have been made up that way. I stronly suggest this gets corrected or John J. Doe could be facing defective document issues.
Absolutely no to all of the items listed below. These documents need to be certified and certification can only be done by the issuing agency. Photocopies of documents such as these, even when notarized, will not be acceptable documents.
What your purporting is something known as a Subscribing Witness Situation. * I would recommend that John Doe have an Affidavit drawn up (not by you) stating that he witnessed all the signatures being executed and you Notarize this Affidavit with the Petition attached to it. If you were to perform that Subscribing Witness situation you wouldn't have to stamp 20 times because you didn't witness the 20 people signing only one (John Doe). The document would require 1 Notarization. However, remember with a Subscribing Witness situation, John Doe cannot benefit (financially, emotionally, or otherwise), he cannot be a party to the instrument if he is acting as the subscribing witness.
As for your application, you should fill it out to read the name that you use and that is on your other forms of identification. Your stamp must read the exact way it appears on your commission card. Your commission card name will appear with the name that you apply with. Therefore, if Jane D. Doe is the name that you go by and your identification matches this name then there should be no problem with you applying with that name.
Delaware is not a County that falls within New York
jurisdiction. Therefore, you cannot notarize these documents if you were in
Delaware. If however you are in New York and your friend comes to visit
with these papers you could perform the notarization with Venue being
properly filled to read
State of New York, County of (where ever you are at the time of notarization).
The expungement papers in general is not a document that I am familiar with (but I am guessing it has something to do with a case being thrown out of
court). I do not see any reason why you couldn't notarize this for your friend if you have absolutely no interest whatsoever. If this document
requires a seal it should be noted on the form. If it is not apparent on the face of the form, you should have your friend ask the Court if a Seal is
required. I am guessing that it will due to the fact that you are a New York Notary and this document will be considered "out of state" due to the
fact that the County where it is being filed is Delaware and you are a New York Notary, it may require a seal. If you do not have a seal and the document requires one, you could obtain a Certificate from the County Clerk's Office officiating your signature.
As for notarizing prior to receiving you number, unfortunately we cannot do that because you need your commission # in order to notarize. You could periodically check my Commission Verification link on www.NotaryPublicCentral.Com . I usually takes approximately 30 days from the date they receive it to receive your commission number.
Holding yourself out to be something you are not is
considered a misdemeanor charge (Subsection 140).
Chattel paper is something like a Promissory Note where there is a SECURITY INTEREST involvement. Whereas Bill of Sale involves the transferring of TITLE.
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