What is a Notary Public?
A Notary Public is a responsible person
of proven integrity
appointed by the state government
to serve the public as an impartial witness
to the signing of important documents and administer
A notary is considered a public official and must
follow specific rules and regulations set up by the
What services do Notaries perform?
Notaries are commissioned by the Secretary of State
as a public officer qualified and bonded under the
laws of a particular jurisdiction for the
performance of notarial acts, usually in connection
with the execution of some document.
What are Common
Types of Notarization?
Acknowledgment - Positive identification
of signer by notary
Jurat - Notary compels signer to tell the
Oaths/Affirmations - Administered to signer
Why is it necessary to have my documents Notarized?
To prevent or discourage fraud. The Notary
Public is needed to certify the identity of document
signers, administer oaths and affirmations and act
as impartial witnesses.
As an impartial
witness (the Notary) ensures that the signers of
documents are who they say they are and not
impostors. The Notary makes sure that signers have
entered into agreements knowingly and willingly.
What identification do I need?
We will need to see a current document that has a
photograph, physical description and a signature.
All signers must provide current, legal photo ID,
preferably a state-issued driver or non-driver ID or
U.S. Passport. Acceptable ID is that which is
current or has been issued within five years,
contains a photograph and description of the person
named on it, shall be signed by the person, shall
bear a serial or other identifying number, and in
the event that the document is a passport, shall
have been stamped by the United States Immigration
and Naturalization Service.
Does my document need to be notarized?
Some real estate deeds, affidavits, and other
documents may not be legally binding unless they are
Is notarization required by law?
For many documents, yes. Certain affidavits, real
estate deeds and other documents may not be legally
binding unless they are properly notarized.
Can I have any document notarized?
The notarized document must contain:
-text committing the signer in some way
-an original signature of the document
-a notary’s certificate which appears on
or attached to the document.
Does notarization mean that a document is "true"
or "legal" ?
No. Notaries are not responsible for the
accuracy or legality of documents they notarize.
Notaries certify the identity of signers. The
signers are responsible for the content of the
Can a Notary Public advise of
the accuracy or legality of documents?
Notary Publics are prohibited by law from rendering
legal advice of any nature during or in conjunction
with a Notarial Act. If you have any questions,
please consult an attorney PRIOR to contacting a
May a Notary refuse to services?
A Notary is a public official who should not refuse
service based on race, nationality, religion,
lifestyle or because the client is not a client or
customer. A Notary may refuse to serve someone if
they are uncertain of a signer's identity,
willingness, or general competence, or suspects
What are the
qualification of a
Each state has its own qualifications and
expectations. In California, a
notary applicant must meet the following
- Must be at least 18 years of age
- Must be a resident of the state
- Possess integrity
What is the maximum
signature fee a notary can charge?
All notarization fees are based on the California
statutory code, with a maximum of $10.00 per
signature. Travel charges, copy fees, documentation
fees and service related fees are additional and are
separate fee from the notarization. No two
notarizations are exactly alike, some require hours
of preparation while others may require only the
completion of a simple form; fees may reflect this.
Fees are normally charged per person, per item, per
incident. To allow for expedient notarization
without incurring additional fees, please be certain
all documents are appropriately completed.