Does the Notary Need to Watch Me Fill Out the Paperwork?

This is a common question. Notaries are not concerned with the content of a document. We are only concerned with positively identifying the SIGNER of the document and their willingness to sign. We cannot notarize if the signers is being coerced or forced in to signing.

You could write a statement claiming you rule the world and we can notarize it. We are not charged with the duty of validating the content of a document, just that you are who you say you are and you signed, swore to or acknowledged signing the document. Whether or not it is valid or truthful is between the signer and the person or entity requesting the document or a judge.

Being dishonest or untruthful in the notarized document is considered perjury and could potentially carry the same offense and punishment as lying in court under oath.

A notarized document does not guarantee in any way that the statements in a document are true, only that the signer’s identity has been verified by the notary and that the directives of the notary certificate have been followed, i.e. that the signature has been acknowledged by the signer or the signer has answered in the affirmative to a verbally issued oath.

If your document says “sworn to” and the notary has not had you raise your hand and ask if the statements are true, find another notary. They have not properly performed the jurat. Should the issue end up in court, that could be a technicality that could void the document.

  • I am not an attorney and the above is not intended as legal advice. I may not give or receive payment for legal advice.