Notary FAQ’s

  • What is a Notary Public?

    A Notary Public is a public servant appointed by the State to act as an impartial witness in taking acknowledgments, administering oaths and affirmations, and performing other acts authorized by state law. Notaries lend credibility to the authenticity of certain sensitive signed documents through identification of the signer. A notarized document ensures to the public that its signer is the person who signed the document.

  • List Title 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 documents.

  • May a Notary give legal advice or draft legal documents?

    No. All states prohibit non-attorneys from practicing law.

  • Why do I need a Notary Public?

    This serves to help protect the public as well as the businesses themselves from illegal activity. Notarization acts as a balancing tool to help protect the public as well as the businesses from illegal and intentional fraudulent activities.

  • How are Notary fees determined?

    All notarization fees are based on the California Government Code 8211 which allows notaries to charge a maximum of $15 per each notarized signature.  Any additional fees must be disclosed separate from the notary service.

  • What is a "Mobile" notary public?

    A mobile notary public will come to your location or a mutual pre-determined location to notarize your documents. They offer convenient service hours outside of regular business hours. The State of California allows a notary to charge a travel fee in addition to the mandated $15.00 per signature fee.

  • What is a “Certified Notary Signing Agent”?

    A Certified Signing Agent has special expertise and training to conduct loan signings. The certification is often from a national organization such as the National Notary Association. The Signing Agent is hired as an independent contractor by a title, mortgage, or escrow office to ensure that the loan signing process is properly completed. Theresa Cruz Bookkeeping Services does not hold this distinction.

  • Can a document with blank lines be notarized?

    A notary public may not notarize a document that is incomplete (Government Section 8205). This is for the public’s protection from the widespread occurrence of fraud.

  • What Identification is required for notarization?

    Each signer must present at least one of the forms of ID listed below. The ID must be current or, if expired, have been issued within the last 5 years; contain the signer’s photograph, physical description, and signature; and bear a serial or other identifying number (Civil Code, Section 1185).

    Acceptable forms of Identification include:

    • Driver’s License of nondriver’s ID card issued by a U.S. state.
    • U.S. passport (physical description not required).
    • U.S. Military Identification Card that contains all required elements stated above, (The Common Access Card, CAC is not acceptable)
    • Driver’s License issued in Mexico or Canada.
    • Foreign passport that has been stamped by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
    • Inmate ID Issued by the California Department of Corrections.