How to make sure that the notarial service is not a scam

There are several activities that we have to attend to from time to time including getting your document notarized. Even though it sounds relatively easy to get a notarization, it also comes with certain risks. There are instances your documents could be notarized fraudulently and you will be surprised to come back home one day and notice that your property has been sold or put for sale. To avoid notary scam, you scan always find reliable notaries by reading reviews on to know those customers have complained of scamming them and avoiding such Notary Public.

What is a Notary Public?

The Notary Public is an officer and public servant that has the authorization to take depositions, take acknowledgements, administer oath, certify document copies that cannot be put in public records and protest instruments like notes and bills when permissible.

A formal oath of office is taken by a Notary Public to perform his duties faithfully. He or she is also required to submit a bond of $10,000 with the State’s Secretary. A Notary Public is expected to work as a neutral or disinterested party. He should also ensure that the person signing the documents knows what they are signing as well as its importance. They act as a third party that people in trade and commerce can rely on knowing that as far as the transaction is concerned, they do not have a personal state.

Dangers of Notary scam

When performing their duties, Notary Publics are personally liable when they are involved in fraud or negligence. This is where the $10,000 bond they submit comes in as it serves as the maximum that can be recovered by an injured party. The Notary Public could still be liable for other damages they have caused and could lead to suspension, revocation and/or criminal persecution.

Notary scams can include

  • Allowing the signing of a document without the presence of the Notary Public
  • Falsified stamps
  • Not acknowledging their documents.

Protecting yourself from scams

Several notary scam cases, especially in the real estate sector, starts with a Notary that have been paid some money to falsely acknowledge some documents. This happens occasionally as every document filed in the records of the country requires a stamp from a notary. The fact it is easy to get the stamp used by Notary Public and there is no system to verify if a notary is legitimate or not, notary scams have continued to thrive. There have been instances where several houses are claimed with forged notary stamps on fake deeds leaving the homeowners baffled and angry.

If you are a victim of a notary scam, you can contact a law firm to get justice for you through the courts and recover part or all of what you lost to the notary scam.

What you should look out for in a notary scam?

Certain things should not be carried out by Notary Publics and you should know about them. The prohibited acts are discussed below:

  • Certification of documents that can be recorded among public records.
  • Notarial certificate signing under other names that are not the commissioned name of the notary.
  • Identification cards issuance
  • Notarizing your signature
  • Charging more than is necessary for notary services
  • Using the ‘notario public’ or ‘notario’ phrases when advertising notary services. This is considering those who speak Spanish see notaries as licensed attorneys. The misinterpretation can be taken advantage of by some Notary Publics.
  • Giving advice, selecting, drafting or preparing legal documents
  • Performing legal services

It is also worthy of note that it is easy to become a Notary Public as you can become one by attending a few easy online courses. Hence, people who are deceitful or corrupt can become a notary public even though their goal is to scam people.

Related Posts