Notary News and Updates

Notarizing Someone’s Blood

From our tales of the bizarre comes a new story. One of which a notary had to notarize someone’s blood for authenticity.

Wait, Did You Say Notarizing Someone’s Blood

This is already the talk of the skate board industry. Skating legend Tony Hawk had blood removed so it can be added to paint. The paint would be used on a limited line of skateboards.

Those skateboards would then be sold at a high price to collectors of skateboards, as well as fans of bloody things.

We imagine the conversation went like this:

  1. Collect blood
  2. Mix blood into paint
  3. Paint neat designs with said blood.
  4. ???????
  5. PROFIT!

And at the end of the day, they needed a notary to certify the blood was authentic, and not some blood from someone pretending to be Tony Hawk.

But the real question is:

Did the notary ask for Tony’s signature in blood for their kid’s wall? We kid, we kid.

It is All for a Good Cause

If we can get serious for a moment.

This limited edition of one hundred skateboards helps a couple of charities, not the new vampire skateboarding team.

Ordered by bottled water company Liquid Death, proceeds will go to 5 Gyres, as well as Tony’s personal charity, The Skateboard Project.

100 of the fully notarized and bloody skateboards will be sold for $500 apiece.

And that is the story of person who was notarizing someone’s blood.

Notary Fees are Decreased in Mississippi

In a defeat to static notaries, Mississippi has passed a bill to lower notary fees in Mississippi.

The changes essentially make the maximum amount that can be charged for a signing to five dollars. That is five dollars a signature for documents notarized.

This may be a blow to storefront notaries, as the benefit of offering notarizations may have decreased as a different loss leader may offer more value.

A Move Towards Electronic and Mobile Signings

The interesting part of the bill eliminates the fee cap for both mobile and electronic signings.

Additional fees may be charged with services that go beyond the normal notarial act. This includes things like travel and digital fees like web streaming or video and doc storage. The only caveat is those fees must be agreed upon in advance.

The lowering of static fees, in conjunction with higher fees allowed for electronic and mobile signings, seems to pave the way for more remote signings in the state.

Here is the full text of the updated notary law.

This is a reminder we are not lawyers. We are not giving legal advice.

Attribution: We would like to thank By Rocky Vaughn, Sue Anna Joe, Dominique Pugh, Clay Moss, Kara Giles, and the Mississippi Department of Archives and History for the illustration of the Mississippi State Flag.

Remote Notarizations in New York Expired

We’ve talked quite a bit about temporary rules, and the temp rules for remote notarizations expired in New York.

Lost in the shuffle of the return to our national holiday, the rules allowing remote notarizations in the state of New York expired. All notaries in the state were alerted before the expiration started, but new rules are yet to be issued.

How We Got Here

Governor Cuomo signed an executive order in March of 2020 implementing emergency rules for remote notarization, as well as a slew of other things. All of these were stated to end in July 2021.

The order included things like remote notarization, travel restrictions, a state of emergency, among others. All of those have been rolled back, but only a few, like using online notaries are stuck in limbo. A couple of other orders have already been extended, including paid leave rules.

What is up Next for Remote Notarizations in New York

A bill has already been presented to the state Senate, where it has already passed committee. It is expected to be passed through the legislature and signed by the governor, but the exact timeline on that is unknown.

What is known is it will pass. What, if any, changes to the original order remain to be seen, as the bill could still go through some negotiations.

As we move forward it is important to stay on top of things. Expiring rules, new rules, updated rules are all coming, and they will be hard to keep track of.

States, Counties, Online Notarizations and Complications

New complications are as states move to go forward with online signings.

As states move to approve their versions of RON signings, it has come up across the country where specific county or local laws prohibit things like the way recordings are legally performed. This is now leading to a move to get specific counties to jump on board.

But, that is easier said than done, and certain states could have ongoing issues.

There are still limitations to the usefulness of RON, and it remains to be seen if these limitations will recede over time. While all counties in Oregon now accept electronic recording of documents notarized by the traditional in-person method, not all counties accept documents notarized by RON.

A Tad Bit Confusing

Maybe more than a tad.

The variety of laws regarding online signings and the variety of hurdles remain significant. While there is no doubt what direction we are headed in, the path to the destination may seem like the Wonderful Wizard of RON.

As we continue to travel the maze, we would recommend you get any training and/or licensing you need. You will need.

How Can You Avoid a Potentially Invalid Signing

To be honest, there is probably no perfect solution.

But, work with your clients, the ones who do business there. They cannot operate if the signing is invalid, so they are quite invested in the situation.

You can try to check by using a search engine, but that may be futile. Even if you find what you are looking for, does not mean you understand it.

But, we would recommend to know your area. Even if that means calling or going personally to ask. It may not be the core of your business, but it sure would seem that you know your business if and when it comes up. And if you are properly networking in the community, it will come up sooner or later.

Imagine being able to step in and rectify a problem before it starts. Now that kind of expertise and customer service will go a long way into making you their go to notary.

Make Sure to Notarize as You Go

Sometimes we all need a reminder, but make sure you notarize as you go.

Make sure you have all of your I’s dotted and your T’s crossed before you go to a signing.

Stamp on Site

Remember, as they always say the customer comes first, but in reality, the law comes first. Not having everything you need for a signing can make you afoul of the law.

We’ve been made aware of too many notaries who are not notarizing on the go.

You cannot wait until you get home to stamp a document!

Not only is this just plainly unprofessional, it leads to a host of problems for the notary, including the fact it is illegal.

Additional Issues Arise for Those Who Don’t Notarize as They Go

Time and money. Two of the things most of us cherish.

But, if we don’t notarize as we go, we lose both.

Not only do we lose the time of having to go back to make the signing legal, we also have to waste the time of our signers, who are probably not going to be happy about it. And they will and do complain about it.

Time is money you could have used to perform another signing or a myriad of other things that are more important to you than fixing a signing.

And that same time is money as well, for our signers.

Error Rate Rises

To be the best, you have to do the best while making your signers feel comfortable and happy.

We’ve talked about how to be a go to notary before, and getting our signings right the first time is a big step in the right direction.

Let’s face it. If your error rate goes up, the confidence your clients have in you wanes. Whether they are private clients, or a signing service such as ourselves, it moves you down the list of notaries they want to use.

Bad signings reflect badly on you, and will make your partners less likely to work with you in the future.

The Deadly Trifecta

Some things we never want:

  • Wasted Time
  • Wasted Money
  • Wasted Effort
  • Increased Error Rate
  • A Lack of Faith from our Clients

So, please, don’t wait until you get home. Get your signings right and notarize on the go.