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Why Do Documents Need To Be Notarized?

Why Do Documents Need To Be Notarized?

notary public is termed as a third-party witness who are appointed not only the signature of a document but also for the assurance of the fact that all parties who signed did so willingly and under their own power. A notary public is specifically given a legal commission to witness signatures and they also place a notary seal on the signed documents. Although most of the official documents do not require notarized signatures, a notary seal is again preferred for it brings legal protection of authenticity and act according to the rules of evidence. The notarized signatures have the potential and power to save one’s money and to protect one in the court.

The Notarized Documents:

If taken technically, the notary publics notarize signatures, and not documents. The law is once required to notary seals on many types of contracts. The real estate deeds are believed to still carry on with notarized signatures. The American Society of Notaries are also believed to list the contracts, deeds, agreements and powers of attorney which can be taken as examples of frequently notarized documents.

Notary Authority:

The authority of a notarized signature can be derived from the notary public’s state or county commission which can be held as a reliable witness. If a person makes an oath which is a must to do, then all about a document’s contents, his declaration in front of the notary can lead to a penalty for deception. The federal courts and some state courts are available to accept the authenticity of a notarized signature. A notary public asserts that he had witnessed a claimant sign on a paper. The banks and post offices are also authorised to provide notary services. The court clerks, county commissioners and deputies perform notary services as well.

Legal Protection:

In the legal proceedings, a notarized signature duly confirms on behalf of the courts that the person whose signature appears on the document is, in fact, the same person who signed the official paper. The individuals who sign documents in the presence of a notary public assert that they are not forced to provide signatures and thus have wilfully signed. According to the American Society of Notaries, some document transactions, such as applications and affidavits, require the signers to swear an oath to the truth of a signed document’s contents. The proceedings before a notary public provides a legal protection if someone have to face certain contests for the validity of a signature in court.

Reasons for the documents being notarized:

The documents are notarized to prevent fraud and to ensure proper execution of the procedures. It is the whole and sole responsibility of the notary public to ensure that the signers have appeared before them and have conducted a proper identification process. The Notary Public governs the signing and insures that the documents are signed correctly. The notary makes sure that the signers are entering into agreements knowingly and willingly and not as a result of any forceful act.

The following elements should be taken into consideration for a document being notarized:-

  1. One has to text committing the signer in some way.
  2. An original signature of the signer is required, and not a photocopy (in case if a signature is required).
  3. A notarial “certificate”, may appear on the document itself or can also appear on an attachment.

When the witnessing a signature on a document is done, the following applies:

  1. In case if the notary certificate states that “subscribed and sworn/affirmed to me…”, then it is mandatory that it is always be signed in the notary’s presence.
  2. In case if the document has already been signed, the notary should necessarily ask the person to sign the document again, either above or below the previous signature.
  3. It is not required for an acknowledgment to be signed in one’s presence. The person who signed the document must appear before and acknowledge that they are the signer and that they signed it.

When one is having a document notarized, it means that the signature is official. It does not mean anything else in detail. One can get a notarized document that involves one in illegal activity, or one that is not enforceable under the state’s laws (and therefore seem to be useless). The notaries are not required to read through the document and evaluate it for anyone, nor will they alert the party to any problems; all they do is just verify that so-and-so signed a document belongs from such-and-such date.

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