Ruth Kohler, a PAN customer service representative, now wishes she had gotten a customer’s signature in her register, particularly after she realized the customer is a famous Pittsburgh sports figure.
A Pittsburgh Penguins came to PAN’s offices to have several forms notarized. He provided the proper identification and Ruth completed the notarizations. After filling out her register entry for the transaction, Ruth showed his unusual last name to a colleague. Then she learned her customer’s true identity.
If only he had provided his “autograph” in her register.
But is getting a customer’s signature in the notarial register good practice?
“We have always taught notaries to follow the black and white letter of the Pennsylvania Notary Public Law,” said PAN President Marc L. Aronson.
While Section 15 of the Notary Public Law emphasizes that every notary “shall keep and maintain custody and control of an accurate chronological register,” and “each register shall contain the date of the act, character of the act, and the date and parties to the instrument and the amount of fees collected for the service,” the law says nothing about obtaining a customer’s signature in a notarial register.
“I don’t see any harm in having a customer sign the notary’s register,” Aronson added. “There are 12 states that recommend or require notaries to have their customers sign the notarial register. But in Pennsylvania, it’s not a violation of the law if notaries want to have their customers sign their registers.”