Some Americans don’t know what the role of a notary is, until they need one. Of course, when you buy, sell, have a refinance or reverse mortgage done a notary is required to be present while you sign your loan docs. On another note it maybe during a time of a critical situation where you need to have a form notarized. Although there are many different types of notary signings, I want to spend some time on three of the more popular signings that need a notary present. Not everyone is aware of certain guidelines for different type of notarial signings.

If you have a loved one in a hospital or assisted living facility you just might need a notary. Certain hospitals and assisted living facilities may provide Advanced Directive forms, which include Living Wills, Durable Power of Attorney for both medical and financial affairs. There are a few things to consider before you make arrangements for a notary to be present. First you must make sure that the signer is aware and free of any medications that make the signer drowsy or incapable of signing. If the notary arrives and finds the signer incapable of singing, the notary will call off the singing. The signer must be alert and coherent to sign any form that needs a notary seal. This protects not only the signer, but the notary as well. Power of Attorney (POA) is another form that is often seen in Hospitals and Assisted Living facilities. A power of attorney is a document drafted by a professional attorney that allows you to appoint a person or organization (called attorney-in-fact) to manage the affairs if the person shall become unable to do so. A POA is valid and signed only when the person mental capacity maybe questioned. If need be a doctor can verify in writing that the person is competent to sign the POA.

Jails and correctional facilities are another main location for a notary to be present. This may sound a little strange, but yes, there are a few times where inmates need to have a document signed and notarized. Before you make arrangements to have a notary come out there are a few things to know. Make sure your documents have the same name as it is recorded by the Sheriff’s department. The names must match and make sure you have the correct booking number. You will also need to be in possession of the inmates valid ID. If you do not have the ID in your possession you will need to check with the facility if two credible witnesses can be used for verification of the inmate.

Currently California is the only state that allows notaries to accept an inmate identification card issued by the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation as identification of the inmate. Make note that certain jails have specific days and times that notaries can be allowed to see inmates. Always check with the facility first. You just want to make sure you have all your ducks in a line before making arrangements for a notary to visit the jails/correctional facility.

Traveling can be a nightmare sometimes. Make sure to have everything together before you get dropped off at the airport. Airport emergencies are not something you plan for especially if you are traveling with a minor. If a child under the age of 18 is traveling internationally with only one parent or with someone who is not a parent or legal guardian, U.S. Customs and Border Protection strongly recommends that the accompanying adult have a note from the non-traveling parent(s) acknowledging and giving permission to let the minor travel. This note must be notarized by a notary. Not many people know this and arrive at the airport unprepared.

In many instances we are prepared and aware of what we need to do and to get done. Sometimes not all the steps or requirements are spelled out for you. Therefore, I have written this article so that we can all be prepared and not miss a crucial step when needing a document notarized by a notary. There are many circumstances that may arise, and we don’t have the time to run around in search of the rules and guidelines to having certain documents notarized. No matter if you need a notary in a hospital, jail, or airport there is one key thing to remember…make sure your signer(s) are aware and alert before having a notary come out. You don’t want the notary to call off the singing if the signer(s) are incoherent. This one rule will save you time and money. Website: