Training Requirements And Responsibilities Of Notary Publics

By: Tom Sample


Making the decision to get a new career or add on to an existing one is a great idea. But, for those who want to enter notary work, the road may be a little different from state to state. How to become a notary public in one locale may differ greatly with another.

In general, a notary public is a person who has been appointed by state officials to witness document signings and conduct oaths. Legal documents that must be notarized, for example, and even wedding ceremonies typically fall into a notary's realm of expertise. There can be a lot of other things that go along with the job as well.

The types of documents a notary is authorized to witness will also very from state to state, but generally entail any documents that must be legally witnessed to ensure their proper execution. The notary acts as an impartial witness to identify signers and to help ferret out imposters. The notary also tries to make sure all parties have entered into an agreement willingly and with an understanding of what is going on.

Many documents require a notary's seal for them to be considered legally binding. Inasmuch, the notary is a valuable asset to a community, a bank or other business. Many notaries also choose to open up their own offices, charging reasonable rates for their work.

Notaries are not lawyers, however. They are not meant to give legal advice or prepare documents. In fact, notaries are typically forbidden by law from preparing documents unless they happen to be a lawyer as well.

Making the decision to become a notary and actually earning the seal are very different things. Most states will require notaries to undergo specialized training to help them in their eventual work. Remember, notaries wear many hats - from impartial witnesses in legal proceedings to the person performing a wedding ceremony - so solid training is a must.

Once a person completes training, most states require the notary to be "appointed" by filling out an application and providing proof of bonding and other requirements. The states themselves generally supply only the appointment and specialized companies offer the rest for notaries. Applications are reviewed by the state and approved fairly quickly if all paperwork is in order.

Those wanting to undergo proper training for notary work should check their individual state requirements. There are courses offered, actual schools and even online locations where training can be provided. What is accepted by one state as proper training may not be accepted by another, however, so do check requirements before pursuing course work.

The work of a notary is generally not very difficult although dealing with people in a number of different circumstances will require some skill. The value of a notary for a community, company and even for creating a personal business is great. The work can be fun and rewarding and the services provided are always appreciated and needed.

The road to becoming a notary public may be a little unique in each state, but the value of the service is not.

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