- September 30, 2020

What should I notarize?

Clients frequently ask us questions such as “Should I have this notarized?”
or “Do you know what I need notarized?”

Unfortunately it isn’t something that we can answer. Rather, we take our instructions about what to notarize from our clients, not the other way around. That is, we notarize documents that our clients tell us to notarize.

Whether or not the document needs to be notarized is not up to us. It’s up the client or whoever the client is submitting his/her documents to (i.e. the recipient). Therefore, it is best to ask the recipient whether the document needs to be notarized.

We often have to explain this to our clients. Sometimes the response we receive is “But you should know. You’re the notary. You deal with these documents all the time.”

This statement stems from a confusion. We are certainly experts at notarization. This means that we know the standards and rules we need to apply in order to correctly notarize a document. However, that does not mean that we can know what it is that needs to be notarized in your particular case.

There are several reasons for this:

1) We can’t know the requirements of every organization and third-party recipient to whom our clients send documents to. We see thousands of different kinds of documents every year and they are destined to thousands of different destinations and recipients, many of whom have different requirements. And some of these requirements change over time.

2) Even if we knew the requirements of every recipient, we might not know that in your particular case the recipient requires additional documentation. Keep in mind that there is no global standard for submitting documentation to a third party. It is NOT the responsibility of the notary to find out what applies in each particular case. This falls completely outside the scope of the service we provide.

3) Even if we knew the requirements of every possible recipient and we knew the special requirements in your particular case, we still would not be able to advise you. This is because at At Walk-In Notary we do not provide legal advice. This includes any advice that resembles legal advice, such as what it is that you should have notarized. This is the reason that our fees are a flat rate and much lower than that of a lawyer’s office. Legal advice costs money by the hour. It is not a service that we provide.

Therefore, if you do not know what you need notarized please find out by contacting the recipient. If you do know what you need notarized, instruct us to do so and we will notarize your document in minutes.

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