Each Notary Public holds a public trust. We must always strive to perform our tasks to the best of our abilities. Our first and most important job is to create the first public record of documents. We do this with our Notarial Journal. Before we even touch the document we completely enter our needed information first.
As the gatekeepers, we are charged with detecting and deterring fraud. We must hold each item up for scrutiny and assure ourselves that they are valid, accurate and complete.
We must be assured that the signer is aware, coherent and has the authority to sign the document. Through communication you learn to evaluate these factors.
It is this confidence that gives us respect. Confidence in knowing how to perform a unique task for the public. The power, as an impartial witness, to acknowledge or swear in signers on a document; makes us a valuable member of the legal, financial and industrial worlds.
We also give signers confidence that by completing the Statement of Particulars, we assure them that no one else can be fraudulently added later.
Each time we view new documents, we learn more. Often a little time spent in research, helps us in the future. If we do not know what to do, we ask someone. We have resources, we just need to ask.
We must note the date and time of each signing and of each document presented. By providing ID, verifying the address and signing in your Journal, the client assists with the process. We visually scan the document to spot blanks and gather the information to enter in the Journal. By performing these steps, we show the signer that we are not just a “Rubber Stamp.” We must educate our clients as to how and what important service we provide.
We must calmly take our time to gather all the needed information, take the time to communicate with the signer so there is NO question about the understanding. Perhaps we must find a bilingual Notary to perform those notarial acts with a non-English person.
We listen actively to the signer, ask questions, DO NOT give answers and spend the time needed to prudently and properly complete each act. We are the professional they have come to, to complete the document.
Created ©2001 Roberta Scherrer
Notary Public of Modesto CA