Can I Get A Witness!

Does my document need a witness?  Why doesn’t the notary know?

It depends on who wrote the document!  There is seldom a standard answer.  The easiest way to find out if your document needs a witness is to READ YOUR DOCUMENT.  If there is a space for witnesses, you probably need witnesses.  Although some documents may instruct EITHER a witness or two OR a notary public, it never hurts to go ahead and have the document notarized.  In the state of Tennessee having the document notarized makes the document self-proving; in other words if the document is contested in court the witnesses will not have to be located and called in to court*.

Before scheduling an appointment with our notary, make sure that the document you are signing doesn’t require witnesses. If it does it is YOUR responsibility to have witnesses 18 or older ready when we arrive. We do not provide witnesses. In general the witnesses must:

1. Be 18 years of age or older **

2. Have and be willing to have recorded their GOVERNMENT issued photo ID. (Driver’s License, ID ONLY Card, Passport, etc.) *

3. Must not be NAMED or BENEFIT from the signing of the document. For example, someone who will be named Attorney in Fact (person who has power of attorney over the signer) in the document cannot witness the document. In general it is best to not allow immediate family members (spouse, children, etc.) to sign. *

Keep in mind that hospital, nursing home and doctor’s office staff are generally prohibited from signing as a witness by their employer’s policy.

If your document requires witnesses and they are not available at your appointment time we will have to charge the travel fee or wait for witnesses to arrive at the rate of $15 per 15 minutes starting 15 minutes past the original appointment time. If the notary has another appointment and is unable to wait, the appointment will have to be rescheduled and the travel fee must be paid.

Travel fees are always due whether a document is notarized or not. We still have fuel and time associated with coming out to your location that must be reimbursed.

* This is not meant to be construed as legal advice.  Always consult an attorney regarding the implications of executing legal documents.
** In certain cases (extreme circumstances) exceptions are allowed, but require additional paperwork and procedure.