If your name has appeared on the Secretary of State’s list of “bad notaries,” chances are, you’ve committed what’s become the Number One issue that gets notaries in trouble time and time again.
For many “bad” notaries, it’s that pesky personal appearance requirement.
Requiring your customers to appear in person before you, the notary, is a steadfast rule in the notarial world. Yet, there are notaries out there who flaunt this legality for the sake of convenience, for laziness or maybe because their bosses tell them otherwise.
Go to the Pennsylvania Notary Public Law manual, read any book on becoming a notary or take any notary education class and what’s one of the first things drummed into a notary’s brain?
Yes, that’s right. Your customers must appear personally before you for any notarization.
This is not brain surgery. It’s a very simple rule of law. How hard is it to tell a potential client:
“Sure, I can notarize that for you. Oh, I’m sorry. You cannot fax the document to me for notarization. You have to appear in person. That’s the law. What’s that? Your boss told you to fax it to me? Sorry. No can do. Please tell your boss that it is the law of this commonwealth that you appear in person before me. Oh, and don’t forget to bring current identification with you, such as a valid driver’s license. Yes. That’s the law, too. “
Honestly, it’s not difficult. Make the personal appearance requirement your own personal mantra. That will go a long way to preventing your name from appearing on any “bad notary” list.