What is the Role of a Notary Public?

The Role of a Notary Public

The main role of a notary public is to verify the identity of a person signing a document. The person signing a document must be present before the notary public, present a valid ID, and sign the document in front of the notary public. The notary public therefore certifies that the signer personally appeared before the notary on the indicated date and in the county. And verifies the identity of the signer. Lastly, certifies that the signer acknowledged executing the document.

Some documents also require the signer to take an oath of affirmation administered by the notary.

You can then legally assume that a notarized document was signed by the actual person in the presence of a notary public.

A notary public’s role is therefore to only certify who is signing a document. A common misconception is that a notary will have knowledge about the documents being signed. Most notaries will have general knowledge about common documents but are not allowed to give advise. Questions should always be directed to the document creator.


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