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  • Kendra Marroquin

Breaking notary laws can get you into some hot water!

You know how breaking parking or littering laws might get you a small fine?

Well, breaking notary laws can land you in much hotter water—think jail time, losing your commission, or expensive lawsuits. Yikes!

That is why it is so important for notaries to stay on the right side of the law!

So, what exactly can get a notary in trouble? Let's break it down:

1. Entering False Information on a Notary Certificate

What does this mean?

Sometimes signers are in a rush and might ask a notary to backdate a notarization or list an absent signer as present. Tempting? Maybe. Legal? Absolutely not!

Why is it illegal?

Businesses and consumers rely on notarization to ensure document integrity. Falsifying info can enable fraud.

What are the consequences?

States like California and Georgia can slap a notary with misdemeanors and hefty fines for knowingly falsifying a certificate.

2. Failing to Require Personal Appearance

What does this mean?

Notarizing without the signer being physically present is a big no-no. For remote online notarizations, they must appear via approved audiovisual tech.

Why is it illegal?

Without personal appearance, a notary can't confirm the signer's identity or willingness to sign, opening doors to fraud and other crimes.

What are the consequences?

In places like Florida, a notary could face civil penalties up to $5,000, and in North Carolina, a notary's commission could be revoked.

3. Letting Someone Else Use Your Seal

What does this mean?

A notary seal is for notary use only—no sharing, even with family or colleagues.

Why is it illegal?

Unauthorized use can lead to fraudulent activities, and a notary could be held responsible.

What are the consequences?

In California, misuse of a notary seal can lead to misdemeanor charges and fines up to $1,500.

4. Charging an Improper Notary Fee

What does this mean?

Notaries should always stick to the fee limits set by their state. Overcharging is a big mistake.

Why is it illegal?

Fee regulations are there to prevent price gouging and ensure fairness.

What are the consequences?

Overcharging in Texas can result in criminal prosecution and revocation of a notary commission.

Bottom line?

Notaries need to stick to the rules and keep their notary practices legit. It's not just about avoiding trouble—it's about maintaining trust and integrity in the profession.


Keeping it legal!


Young lady making an X with her arms to indicate a no-go

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